Realty Terms

DEEP WATER: Deep water is ocean access! Deep Water access is descriptive of a home or lot on a canal with access to the ocean via an Inlet. Older homes on these highly desirable lots are often razed by new owners or builders and replaced with newer models. Some prized lots are "sporting" a third house on the site in less than 40 years!
DRAW BRIDGE: A bridge over a waterway which opens to allow tall boats to pass. Draw bridges are necessary so that large powerboats and sailboats can dock inland. Some bridges open on a schedule while for others, boaters must call for openings on their VHF radio or cell phones.

FIXED BRIDGE: A bridge spanning a waterway which does not open in any way. Boats docked inland of fixed bridges must of suitable size to navigate under them. Consideration must be given to the height of the boat and the tide. The city has information available on the mean clearage at high and low tides for most fixed bridges. Since all canals west of Federal Highway empty into the Hillsboro River which flows east to the Intracoastal, boaters in these areas must consider the Federal Highway fixed bridge.

"No Fixed Bridges" describes property offering ocean access under drawbridges, a necessary condition for ocean going sailboats and larger vessels.

EUROPEAN-STYLE CABINETS: Frameless cabinets without knobs
GRAND ROOM: Formal living room and dining room combined into one area.
GREAT ROOM: Kitchen, breakfast nook, and family room combined in one area

ICW or INTRACOASTAL WATERWAY: System of inland and coastal waterways connecting canals, lakes, rivers and bays along the Atlantic coast of the United States. The system extends from Massachusetts to the Florida Keys and is managed locally by The Florida Inland Navigation District. In Florida, the ICW separates the beach areas from the "mainland" and provides a "highway" for pleasure craft. In Boca Raton, two highways (Spanish River Blvd., and Palmetto Park Road) and one street (Camino Real) cross the Intracoastal
LANAI: a roofed patio.

MORNING ROOM: Niche or kitchenette in the master suite; may consist of cabinets, sink, coffee maker, mini-refrigerator, and microwave. Very popular in newer upscale townhomes where the master suite is upstairs. 

PUD: Planned Unit Development. Most of Boca Raton's developments are PUDs. The developer subdivides the parcel, carefully planning the neighborhood amenities. The building of homes may proceed in phases: for instance, nearly all the lots will be sold in Phase I before the developer opens lots in Phase II for purchase. This assures a more orderly building process and is cost effective.


POD,: A developers term for a group of home lots on a street or cul de sac. A builder might buy a POD in a developers community on which to build his/her series of homes. 

ROMAN SHOWER: A walk-in shower, large enough for two, that has an entrance on each side; may connect his-and-her bathrooms in the master suite. 

SATURNIA MARBLE: or "Saturnia": A marble from the Saturnia region in Italy, now very popular as a floor surface in upscale Florida homes. Usually light in color, "natural looking" and unpolished.

SUMMER KITCHEN: an area on the patio that includes a barbeque grill, sink and possibly a small refrigerator

TRAY CEILING: A flat ceiling with the center portion raised; often found in the master bedroom and in dining areas.

VERANDA: A long covered porch or walkway between two parts of residence.

VOLUME CEILING: A high ceiling, usually 12 to 14 feet or more. Popular in the current market. Popular with home builders because it gives the feel of spaciousness to rooms with relatively small square footage. Some east Boca renovators will literally "raise the roof" on an older dwelling and add an impressive entry door.

VILLA: Realtors define this as an attached one story home connected to the next home by a common wall. A villa may be modest or quite elaborate in an expensive country club community. In a larger sense, a villa could be a smaller home on a zero lot line. (See Gracious Patio Homes). How small? Its all relative! 

WAINSCOT: Trimwork or paneling on the lower part of an interior wall; generally enriches the decor.

WOOD DESTROYING ORGANISMS: Termites and fungi that destroy wood. Vulnerable areas on Florida homes include any wood trim, fascia and soffits, trusses holding up roofs, and interior baseboards. Buyers will have home inspectors search diligently for evidence of such organisms and any resulting damage before closing on a home purchase. Generally it is the sellers obligation to rid the property of such pests and repair the damage before closing on the home. When inspectors find termite infestation, tenting may be recommended. A a gas poisonous to the insects is pumped through the house. Tents are removed and residents may return in two to three days.
Good News: not likely to see a bug in the house for six to twelve months!

YAMATO: Name of the colony of Japanese farmers who attempted to grow pineapples and other crops in the early 1900s in the Boca/Delray area. Their legacy includes Morikami Park.

ZERO-LOT: Also referred to as "zero-lot line", a term used to describe a space-saving method of single-family home construction in which one side of the home is built on the lot line. The exterior wall on the zero-lot line has few or no windows due to the proximity of the neighboring home.

 Z-LOT: Variation of the zero-lot line home design whereby the outside walls extend across the full lot in zig-zag or Z-fashion. Ingenious use of the wall fountains, landscaping, and glass brick provide privacy in an attractive setting.