Real estate is a vital part of our economy, providing jobs in construction, home

improvement, lending, insurance and more. It also is a significant investment

vehicle, bringing in income and offering tax benefits. Real estate can be complex

and involves numerous legal considerations, making it important to work with

experts in the industry.

Whether you’re interested in buying your first suburban house or investing in a high rise

office building in a bustling metropolitan area, it is essential to understand the

nuances of this industry. This guide will help you learn the basics, including the

different types of property, key players and common terms used in the real estate

industry. For more

According to the National Association of Realtors, the real estate industry

contributes about $3.7 trillion to the U.S. economy and employs more than 8 million

people. It’s one of the most popular ways to invest money, with returns often higher

than those from stocks and bonds. The value of real estate is often a leading

indicator of the health of an economy, with rising prices indicating a growing

economy and falling prices indicating a cooling one.

The real estate market can be divided into residential, commercial, industrial and

vacant land. Residential real estate includes single-family homes, condos and

apartment buildings. Commercial real estate includes strip malls, shopping centers,

hospitals and office buildings. Industrial real estate includes manufacturing buildings

and warehouses. Vacant land includes undeveloped property and agricultural lands

such as farms, ranches and timberland.

As demand for housing continued to rise even during the pandemic, new

construction of single-family homes reached record highs in 2020. This trend is

expected to continue as more young people move out of big cities and search for

affordable housing in suburbs. Meanwhile, the rental market has been in decline

across major metropolitan areas during the pandemic, presenting real estate

investors with opportunities to purchase struggling properties and prepare them for

renters to return once the epidemic is over.

Investors can choose to buy property and hold on to it as an investment, or they

may opt to sell their property in order to take advantage of rising prices or other

factors that influence the market. Real estate transactions involve many specialized

considerations, including inspections, negotiation and contracts. This guide will

provide you with the information you need to enter this industry, whether as a

buyer, seller, agent or investor.

Real estate is defined as any physical property that has been improved or attached

to the land. This can include natural attachments, such as trees and ponds, or

artificial—or man-made—attachments such as a building or sidewalk.

Land that has these attachments is considered “improved,” while land without them is considered “unimproved.” Real estate can be further classified as residential, commercial or

industrial. The most common type of real estate is residential, followed by

commercial and then industrial. Other types of real estate include agricultural,

vacant land and special purpose real estate, such as cemeteries, government

buildings and schools.