Seller Multiple Counter Offer: (SMCO) This is a document written by the Seller of a property who receives multiple offers, and therefore requests a Highest and Best from all buyers.
Prelim: A preliminary title report, which confirms ownership of a property and all liens against it.
Highest and Best: The highest price a Buyer is willing to pay for a property. Real Estate Agents on Bravo’s TV Show Million Dollar Listing call this a Best and Final.
MLS: Multiple Listing Service. Think of this as the Zillow for Real Estate Agents.
Special Assessments: Annual property taxes levied by the local government for a specific use, like sewer and water system improvements. As a rule of thumb, the newer home will have higher Special Assessments, but it very much varies by neighborhood.
CMA (Comparative Market Analysis): A list of comparable home sales used by agents to establish the FMV (Fair Market Value) of a home by comparing its features and amenities to other properties in the area.
Earnest Money Deposit (“Good Faith” Deposit): A deposit of (usually) 1% of the purchase price, given to Escrow by the buyer, used to demonstrate a commitment to purchase.
Seller Contribution: The portion of the closing costs that the seller pays to the buyer.