real estate


Definition of real estate

1 : property in buildings and land
2 : space, capacity her desktop real estate the limited real estate on hard drives— Leonard Wiener

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Synonyms for real estate


capacity, complement, cubage, volume

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Examples of real estate in a Sentence

She works in real estate. the enormous difference in real estate between a high-definition disk and one in standard definition

Recent Examples on the Web

Sources identified the pilot to NBC News and the New York Times as Tim McCormack, who flew the helicopter for a real estate company. Jen Kirby, Vox, "Helicopter crash in Manhattan, New York: what we know," 11 June 2019 Sterling Suffolk Racecourse, the company that operates the track, sold the property to a real estate company that plans to redevelop it., "Vanderbilt pitcher Kumar Rocker tosses no-hitter," 9 June 2019 Rodriguez, elected in November at age 33, is president of a local real estate company and a military veteran with six children and a seventh on the way. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Oceanside council’s youngest member wants a raise, term limits and a full-time job," 6 June 2019 Sibcy Cline is the largest real estate company in the area and has earned many honors over the years. Sheila Vilvens,, "Top Workplaces Cincy: TQL, Sibcy Cline and Huff Realtors lead large division," 5 June 2019 The New York real estate company with a portfolio of trophy properties bought Harborplace in 2012 from General Growth Properties for $100 million. Lorraine Mirabella,, "Baltimore leaders meet Harborplace receivership with disappointment but hope for better future," 5 June 2019 Hendry works as a first vice president at the Indianapolis office of CBRE, Inc., a global commercial real estate company. Arika Herron, Indianapolis Star, "Turnover at Indiana State Board of Education continues as six-year member steps down," 4 June 2019 Advertising The social media posts came from users who claimed to work for a real estate company called Imobiliaria Muzema. Peter Prengaman, The Seattle Times, "Collapse of buildings in Rio kills 3 in militia-run area," 12 Apr. 2019 Photos posted to the real estate company’s Facebook also show off its rustic charm. Megan Stein, Country Living, "Carrie Underwood Is Selling the Nashville Mansion Where She Had Her Scary Accident," 10 Mar. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'real estate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of real estate

circa 1642, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for real estate

Last Updated

19 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for real estate

The first known use of real estate was circa 1642

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More Definitions for real estate

real estate


Financial Definition of real estate

What It Is

Real estate refers to land, as well as any physical property or improvements affixed to the land, including houses, buildings, landscaping, fencing, wells, etc.

How It Works

Vacant land and residential lots, plus the houses, outbuildings, decks, trees sewers and fixtures within the boundaries of the property are examples of real estate. Furniture, cars, paintings, jewelry and boats are examples of personal property rather than real estate.

There are a variety of ways to invest in real estate, ranging from real estate investment trusts (REITs) to buying rental property or multi-family housing.

For investors turned off by the idea of fixing plumbing and dealing with tenants, REITs offer the opportunity to participate directly in the ownership or financing of real estate projects. REITs are tradable interest (much like a share of stock) in a pool of real estate-related assets. REITs own, and often operate, income-producing real estate such as office buildings, apartments, shopping centers, warehouses and hotels. Many REITs specialize in one property type, such as offices, apartments or regional shopping malls.

Most investors buy REITs for their rich dividends, although those dividends are usually fully taxable. Keep in mind, though, that each real estate sector is affected by different economic cycles. Larger, diversified, or geographically dispersed REITs are less exposed to regional weakness and major economic cycles. On the other hand, smaller, more specialized REITs often provide the greatest growth potential.

Why It Matters

In addition to having real value that investors can touch, feel and understand, real estate can be an excellent diversification tool for investors. If you pay the right amount for your property, there's potential to reap steady, long-term returns as a landlord.

Portfolios containing real estate tend to outperform those without real estate over the long haul.  Investing in real estate can also offer reduced risk because the real estate market is not closely correlated with stock or bond markets.

[For information on real estate investment trusts, see our REITs definition.]

[InvestingAnswers Feature: Real Estate Investors' Top Strategies for Getting the Best Price on Rental Properties.]

Source: Investing Answers

real estate


English Language Learners Definition of real estate

chiefly US
: property consisting of buildings and land
: the business of selling land and buildings

real estate


Kids Definition of real estate

: property consisting of buildings and land

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real estate


Legal Definition of real estate

: real property at property

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Comments on real estate

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