Why is an apartment called an apartment

Real estate ads: what abbreviations and technical terms mean

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EBK, Townhouse or FBH: Abbreviations and technical terms are often used in real estate advertisements. But not everyone understands them straight away. The most important terms and their meanings at a glance.

What does m. F., what does a. A. and what is a townhouse? Apartment advertisements are often provided with abbreviations and technical terms that laymen are not necessarily immediately familiar with.


Sometimes "exclusive townhouses" are sold in real estate ads. Basically, a townhouse is nothing more than a terraced house with several floors in an urban location. The houses often have large windows with French balconies. A small garden is often one of them.

Open house

Every now and then, open-house viewings are announced in real estate advertisements. This type of presentation actually comes from the USA, but is also becoming increasingly popular in Germany. What is meant is an open tour. The realtor announces a certain date at which anyone interested - without having to register in advance - can visit the apartment or house without obligation.

Basement, maisonette and penthouse

To describe where the apartment to be rented is located in the house, realtors often use the terms basement, maisonette or penthouse - because they sound more elegant. If an apartment is in the basement, it is a basement apartment or an apartment in the basement. In any case, the floor of the storey in which the apartment is located is below the surface of the earth. A duplex apartment, on the other hand, is usually on the top floor of a house. It extends over two floors, the second floor must be accessible via a staircase inside the apartment. A penthouse is a free-standing apartment on the roof of a residential building.

WM connection, TB and 1 ZKBB

As a rule, abbreviations are used in real estate advertisements for all possible descriptions - in order to accommodate as much text as possible in a small space. Some abbreviations are better known, others regularly raise questions. 1 ZKBB is not a secret code, but simply means that the property is a one-room apartment with a kitchen, bathroom and balcony. You can choose between the abbreviations 1 ZBB (a room with a bathroom and balcony) or 1 ZKBT (a room with a kitchen, bathroom and terrace).

If the real estate ad says something about a World Cup connection in the apartment, it has nothing to do with the World Cup. The apartment is equipped with a washing machine connection. Sometimes apartments also have a TB (daylight bathroom) - that is, a bathroom with windows.

By the way, if you are looking for a bathroom with a tub, you can definitely ignore all the ads that say DB. Because these bathrooms are only equipped with a shower.

The most important abbreviations at a glance

Property type 
1ZKBBOne-room apartment with kitchen, bathroom and balcony
DHHSemi-detached house
EFHdetached house
FROMOld building
NBNew building
TGUnderground parking space
SFBCEquipped kitchen
TBDaylight bath
m. F.with window
WM connectionWashing machine connection
Ga.-Ant.Garden share
FBHUnderfloor heating
FWDistrict heating
GOGas heating
NSPNight storage heating
ZHCentral heating
a. A.on demand
VBBasis for negotiation
WMrent including heating
KMCold rent


Stefanie Messelken

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