Real estate is the term used to describe real property that includes any land, structure, building or vacant land, together with its accompanying natural resources like water, minerals or vegetation; and immovable, personal property of the above nature. The term has various other meanings in common parlance. For example, in United States, real estate includes real estate owned by a United States citizen, but not limited to his/her residence. Real estate also refers to any land, structure, building or vacant land, that is under the exclusive right of the United States to use for such purpose. In Canada, real estate also refers to any real estate owned by Canadian companies.
As per the laws of several countries, the term real estate includes all real property that is permanently attached to the earth (meaning it cannot be changed). Permanent attachment can be either due to the soil retaining its permanent state, or due to the soil being permanently connected to the earth by a fixed or permanent physical structure. In the case of permanent attachments, the real property purchased within one year of purchasing would be termed as permanently attached to real estate. Generally, real estate includes any building constructed after July 1, 1947, on any public lands or on private lands acquired for such purpose, including vacant land or any land intended to be used for hydro-electricity, desalination, forestry or agricultural purposes.
Another important distinction between real estate and real property is that, real property does not include under its wings any man-made constructions. Man-made structures include houses, buildings, bridges, malls, hotels, shops, apartment complexes, shopping complexes, industrial complexes, office complexes, shopping plazas, toll booths, underground piping, pipelines, parking lots, streets, roads, railroads and highways, reservoirs and others. Within the same concept, however, man-made structures do not include the structures or areas listed above. So, if you are planning to buy a piece of real estate, make sure that it does not encompass any such structures or areas. In fact, an analysis of the current structure would help you understand the purpose of the piece of real estate.
A simple analysis of real estate consists of three major components: location (type), accessibility (type) and value (price). The location refers to the geographical positioning of the property. It is said to be ‘location independent’ when a piece of real estate does not have any permanent attachments and can be easily shifted from one place to another. On the other hand, accessibility refers to the accessibility of the land. It is said to be ‘permanently attached’ when a man-made structure is permanently attached to the land (built below the surface). And lastly, the value refers to the price of the land (which is affected by the location, accessibility, etc.)
The major categories of real estate are single family homes, multiple-unit homes, businesses (such as retail outlets, office complexes, industrial estates), agricultural land, forests and man-made constructions. Almost everywhere there is a demand for some kind of real estate. But, the demand for certain kinds of real estate (like ‘single family houses’, ‘multi-structure buildings’ etc.) vary from place to place.
So, basically, from the above discussion it is evident that there are many different types of real estate. However, it would be safe to say that the most popular and widely used type of real estate is ‘Residential Real Estate Market’. The residential real estate market is comprised of various different types of housing such as apartments, bungalows, condominiums, houses, mobile homes, rent-to-own properties and land. With residential real estate market there are almost innumerable numbers of investment opportunities.