Do you know your gazumping from your gazundering?
The property market is full of jargon, and it can be tricky for buyers to understand the puzzling terms used by mortgage lenders, solicitors and surveyors.
Now Halifax has joined forces with Google to help homebuyers and remortgagors to get to grips with the convoluted language used in the property market, launching a new Jargon Buster. It aims to explain common but tricky terms in a way that is easy to understand, relatable and entertaining.
How it works
Consumers can access the Jargon Buster dictionary using Google Assistant on mobile devices and Google Home, by saying “Ok Google, let me speak to the Halifax Jargon Buster”. This means that users at any stage of the homebuying process can search for the mortgage term they are unsure about, and get a response with an analogy.
For example the Jargon Buster explains ‘gazumping’ like this:
● Analogy: It’s a bit like agreeing a price with someone who is selling their snooker table on eBay and turning up to find they’ve sold it to someone with a better offer.
● Definition: A seller of a property accepts an oral offer on the property from one potential buyer, but then accepts a higher offer from someone else.
Gazundering on the other hand, is when the buyer lowers their offer for a property right before exchange of contracts, leaving the seller feeling pressured to accept it, especially if they are in a property chain.
Tim Male, head of innovation and communications at Halifax, said: “Buying a home is usually the biggest financial commitment we make in a lifetime, and we know that mortgage and property market terms can feel difficult to grasp – with many people turning to Google for help.
“This felt like the perfect opportunity to join forces with Google to help people navigate the home buying process more confidently and get a step closer to their dream home.”
David Black, managing director, finance & services, Google UK, added: “We are excited to partner with The Halifax to provide the jargon buster through the Google Assistant, supporting consumers as they make their way through the sometimes confusing process of buying a home. Using our Actions on Google technology, Halifax can provide first-time buyers with home-buying information that’s entertaining and easy to understand.”
What’s on there?
More than 25 of the top Googled mortgage terms are currently featured on the Halifax Jargon Buster and others will continue to be added. Here are the top 10:
1. Stamp Duty
2. Buy-to-let mortgage
3. Help To Buy ISA
5. Interest only mortgage
6. Fixed mortgage
7. Account fee
8. Land Registry fees
9. Offset mortgage