Like most industries, the world of real estate has a language all its own. Sometimes the terms used can be confusing, especially for first-time homebuyers. If you find a house for sale with a status listed as “sale pending,” “contingent,” or “under contract,” what does that mean, exactly? Is the house off the market, or can you still take a tour or make an offer? 

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The Mississippi River might seem like a huge barrier between Missouri and Illinois, but it’s actually less than a mile wide. The two states share a lot of traits, especially in terms of real estate. If you have ever considered buying a home across the river—whether that means going east into Illinois or west into Missouri—the real estate process is mostly the same. But there are a few differences worth noting.

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Like any industry, the world of real estate comes with its own rules and lingo. Since buying a house isn’t something most people do all the time, the process can seem confusing and mysterious. For first-time homebuyers, the fear of the unknown can create a lot of anxiety. But even someone who has bought numerous houses in the past might be concerned that things have changed since their last purchase—or because of the pandemic.

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