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


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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 Maybe there’s a misconception that someone who owns real estate is a millionaire and can afford to lose money. Leila Atassi, cleveland, "To solve our low-income housing crisis, the voucher system must work for landlords, too," 13 Jan. 2020 People buy and sell real estate for a variety of reasons. Michelle Sandlin, Houston Chronicle, "On the Move: HAR chair Nugent discusses opportunities for people moving to Houston — Part 1," 11 Jan. 2020 Fearing that Seton may be sold and its property used to develop real estate, the Daly City Council has passed a resolution to keep Seton and surrounding land zoned for hospital use. Catherine Ho,, "Bay Area hospital facing closure may have new buyer," 10 Jan. 2020 University Realty is a nonprofit entity that uses real estate to support ASU. Priscilla Totiyapungprasert, azcentral, "Forks up, ASU sports fans: College Bar in Tempe is reopening on Mill Avenue," 10 Jan. 2020 A few months later, a former Alabama colleague called offering a job selling commercial real estate. New York Times, "Dabo Swinney Has a Vision to Sell You," 10 Jan. 2020 Both sets of records list multiple real estate and financial metrics, including occupancy, income and expenses. Heather Vogell, ProPublica, "We Found Major Trump Tax Inconsistencies. New York’s Mayor Wants a Criminal Investigation.," 10 Jan. 2020 The second is to stalk all the enviable real estate, as well as get ideas for how to overhaul your space. Megan Stein, Country Living, "Where Is 'Love It Or List It' Filmed? The City Is a Surprisingly Reasonable Place to Live," 31 Dec. 2019 Said to be profitable The shopping center, including the Kmart's real estate, is owned by California businessman Joseph Choi, who purchased the property for $5.45 million in 2015, according to city assessor records. Jc Reindl, Detroit Free Press, "Kmart in Marshall, Michigan will be last store in state: Here's how it has survived," 25 Dec. 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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Time Traveler for real estate

Time Traveler

The first known use of real estate was circa 1642

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Statistics for real estate

Last Updated

16 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Real estate.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 19 January 2020.

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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

What made you want to look up real estate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to insert between existing elements

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