London Real Estate, Housing and Property Terms

Whether inconclusive about the kind of property you’re hunting for, frightened for not knowing everything that’s out there, or just simply curious, selection of real estate must be approached with a certain amount of respect and a good portion of base knowledge. This guide will aim to clarify all questions asked regarding the types of proprietorship possible to acquire at the capital city London (also trusted information fitting any other major city).

It’s not just about knowing what can or can’t be found. In a way, a modern perspective of ‘home’ is only as good as the details. They tend to speak for themselves as well. For example, the very definition of a chosen kind of property shows increasing similarity to another. Therefore, a person can come to the conclusion of choice, only due to understanding the rest – a choice defined by the method of exclusion. In present tense, modern London is landlord of a large variety types of property. Here they are enlisted, each with an exact definition:


A flat or apartment (the equivalent of the US ‘condominium‘ or the AU ‘unit‘) is usually on one floor, although it can be spread over a number of floors (in which case it’s generally called a duplex or maisonette). A block consisted of flats is an apartment building, high-rise tower block, a converted building (such as a factory or warehouse), or a large house converted into flats called ‘conversions‘, common throughout London. Loft flats are generally found in converted industrial buildings. They are often seen with double or triple height ‘cathedral’ ceilings. There are blocks and mansion flats with ornate fa├žades in central London, containing stylish and spacious Edwardian and Victorian flats built in the late 19th and early 20th century.


Traditionally a pretty, quaint house in the country, possibly with a thatched roof, although the name is used nowadays to comprise almost anything except a flat. Can be terraced or detached.

Detached House

An independent house, usually with its own front and/or rear garden and garage.


A flat that’s on two floors connected by a staircase – close to a maisonette with the exception of its own external entrance.


Short for ‘bedsitter’ – an abbreviation of ‘bed-sitting room’. A tiny flat with one room designed for both living and sleeping in. Often the existing bathroom or kitchen is not separate but shared.


Single storey detached or semi-detached house, popular with the elderly due to the absence of stairs.


These are popular in London. Modern houseboats are spacious and luxurious, only limited by your budget. They are also much cheaper than an equivalent-sized house or flat. However, there is one major drawback: finding a mooring – expensive and practically impossible with hundreds of people on the waiting list for each individual case.

Semi-detached House

A detached building containing two separate homes joined in the middle by a shared wall. They usually come with front and rear gardens and off-road lock up and/or parking garage.


Part of an apartment or house forming separate living accommodation, usually on two floors with its own external entrance.


Traditionally a penthouse has been a large luxury flat, top-floor-located on a high building, although nowadays describes any large (or not so large) luxury flat, which may or may not be located on the top floor of a building. Respectively can also be the top floor of a relatively low-rise building.

Mews House

A conversion from old stables, carriage houses or servants’ lodgings (17th to 19th century), the town equivalent of genuine cottage. Rather expensive but fairly common in central London.

Period Property

A property build before 1911, name after the period in which it was built as following: Georgian (1714-1830), William & Mary (1830-1837), Victorian (1837-1901) or Edwardian (1901-1910).

Terraced House

Usually two to five storey high houses, built in a row of three or more.


A modern building similar to a terraced house, though generally larger and often with an integral garage.

Mind you, buying a property does not conclude by choice alone. Before you can form a proper prediction or estimation of your own, you must take into account the following spendings on estate agent taxes and professional relocation assistance.