The Language of Real Estate – Learning Real Estate one word (or phrase) at a time…
A reduction or decrease in amount, degree, intensity, or worth. For example, a lessee usually is entitled to an abatement of rent during the time the premises are made uninhabitable by fire, flood, or other acts of God. Also, there may be an abatement of rent if the landlord fails to give the tenant possession at the beginning of the agreed-upon lease term.
When a defect is discovered in a seller’s title and the seller refuses to correct it before closing, the buyer can seek specific performance of the contract with an abatement from the purchase price because of the defect. For example, a buyer enters into a contract to purchase a $100,000 house. Before closing, a title search reveals that the sellers have not paid $5,000 in property taxes. The sellers refuse to pay the taxes and decide not to sell the property. The buyer could deposit $95,000 into court and force a sale of the property in an action for specific performance. The sellers would then pay the state the $5,000 in unpaid taxes to obtain clear title to the property.
Tax abatement occurs when there is tax reduction or cessation of an initial assessed valuation, such as an error in the tax assessment.
A summary abatement is the court-ordered destruction of premises that are considered unsafe or partially destroyed.
If a property owner is maintaining a nuisance, such as a chemical plant emitting harmful fumes, an abutting owner may bring an action to abate the nuisance.
An asbestos abatement plan outlines the method to handle the control of asbestos found in a property.
Abatement methods include removal by specially licensed asbestos abatement contractors; encapsulation of the asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) so that the fibers may not easily be released; enclosure by covering the ACMs with a protective wrap or jacket; or sealing off an area that contains the asbestos, such as a crawlspace.
Abatement is a term with various meanings depending on the context in which it is used.
Reduction or Decrease: In environmental contexts, abatement may involve efforts to reduce or eliminate pollution or emissions.
Legal Action: In legal contexts, abatement can refer to the suspension or termination of a legal proceeding.
Tax Relief: Abatement can also refer to a reduction or exemption from taxes. This can occur in various tax-related situations, such as property tax abatement for certain development projects or income tax abatement for specific income categories.
Pest Control: In the context of pest control, abatement refers to the reduction or elimination of pests or vermin, often through the use of various pest control methods.
Obstruction Removal: In construction or demolition, abatement can mean the removal of obstructions or hazards from a site before work begins. This may include removing hazardous materials like asbestos or lead-based paint.

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