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- Abstract of judgment,law
The summary of a court judgment that creates a lien against a property when filed with the county recorder.
- Accelerated cost recovery system
A tax calculation that provides greater depreciation in the early years of ownership of real estate or personal property.
- Accelerated depreciation
A bookkeeping method that depreciates property faster in the early years of ownership.
- Acceleration clause
A provision that gives a lender the right to collect the balance of a loan if a borrower misses a payment.
The seller's written approval of a buyer's offer.
Any means by which a person can enter property.
The degree to which a building or site allows access to people with disabilities.
The gradual addition to the shore or bank of a waterway by deposits of sand or silt.
A written declaration affirming that a person acted voluntarily.
A measurement of land equal to 43,560 square feet.
- Acre foot
The volume of material needed to cover an acre of land one foot deep.
- Active solar system
A system that utilizes electric pumps or fans to transfer solar energy for storage or direct use.
- Actual age
The number of years a structure has been standing.
An addition or change to a contract.
- Additional principal payment
Extra money included in the monthly payment to help reduce the principal and shorten the term of the loan.
- Add-on interest
The interest a borrower pays on the principal for the duration of the loan.
- Adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM)
A loan with an interest rate that is periodically adjusted to reflect changes in a specified financial index.
- Adjusted cost basis
The cost of any improvements the seller makes to the property. Deducting the cost from the original sales price provides the profit or loss of a home when it is sold.
- Adjustment period
The amount of time between interest rate adjustments in an adjustable-rate mortgage.
A person given authority to manage and distribute the estate of someone who died without leaving a will.
- Administrator's deed
A legal document that an administrator of an estate uses to transfer property.
- Adverse possession
The acquisition of title to property through possession without the owner's consent for a certain period of time.
- Adverse use
The access and use of property without the owner's consent.
- Aeolian soil
Soil that is composed of materials deposited by the wind.
A person who makes a sworn statement.
A substitution for an oath granted to people based on religious reasons.
- A-frame design
An interior style that features a steeply peaked roofline and a ceiling that is open to the top rafters.
The relationship of trust that exists between sellers and buyers and their agents. The agency is formed through a written contract.
- Agency closing
The process by which a lender uses a title company or other firm as an agent to complete a loan.
A person licensed by the state to conduct real estate transactions.
- Agreed boundary
A compromise boundary to which property owners agree in order to resolve a dispute.
- Agreement of sale
A document the buyer initiates and the seller approves that details the price and terms of the transaction.
A recessed section of a room, such as a breakfast nook.
- Alienation clause
A provision that requires the borrower to pay the balance of the loan in a lump sum after the property is sold or transferred.
Mineral salt found in soil.
- Alkaline soil
Soil that contains a higher concentration of mineral salt than natural acid.
A lane behind a row of buildings or between two rows of buildings.
Budgets offered by builders of new homes for the purchase of carpeting and fixtures.
- Alternative mortgage
Any home loan that does not conform to a standard fixed-rate mortgage.
- Aluminum siding
A metal covering that provides an alternative to paint for owners of wood homes.
- Aluminum-clad windows
Wooden windows with aluminum covering the exterior.
Parks, swimming pools, health-club facilities, party rooms, bike paths, community centers and other enticements offered by builders of planned developments.
- American Society of Home Inspectors
The American Society of Home Inspectors is a professional association of independent home inspectors. Phone: (800) 743-2744.
- Americans with Disabilities Act
A law passed in 1990 that outlaws discrimination against a person with a disability in housing, public accommodations, employment, government services, transportation and telecommunications.
The process of paying the principal and interest on a loan through regularly scheduled installments.
- Amortization tables
Mathematical tables that lenders use to calculate a borrower's monthly payment.
The strength of an electrical current.
- Anchor bolt
A large steel bolt anchored in concrete and attached to a building to prevent the structure from moving.
Any kind of plant that must be planted every year.
- Annual mortgagor statement
A yearly statement to borrowers that details the remaining principal and amounts paid for taxes and interest.
- Annual Percentage Rate (APR)
The cost of the loan expressed as a yearly rate on the balance of the loan.
The payment of a fixed sum to an investor at regular intervals.
- Anticipatory breach
A communication that informs a party that the obligations of the original contract will not be fulfilled.
A document that details a potential borrower's income, debt and other obligations to determine credit worthiness.
- Application fee
The fee that a lender charges to process a loan application.
An opinion of the value of a property at a given point in time.
- Appraisal fee
The fee that an appraiser charges to estimate the market value of the property.
- Appraisal report
A detailed written report on the value of a property based on recent sales of comparable sites in the area.
- Appraised value
An opinion of the current market value of a property.
An increase in the value of a home or other property..
A method of resolving a dispute in which a third party renders a decision.
An area shaded by trees, shrubs or vines on a latticework structure.
A curved structure that supports weight over an area, such as a doorway.
A licensed professional who designs homes, buildings and other structures.
- Architectural fees
The fee an architect charges for services. In general, architects charge for their services by the hour, by the square foot, or by a percentage of the project budget.
A French measurement of land equal to .84625 acres.
A fire-resistant mineral used for insulation and home products that has been found to pose a health hazard.
- As-is condition
The purchase or sale of a property in its existing condition.
- Asking price
A seller's initial price for a property.
- Assessed value
A tax assessor's determination of the value of a home in order to calculate a tax base.
The estimated value of a piece of real estate or a levy placed on property in addition to taxes.
- Assessment rolls
A list of taxable property compiled by the assessor.
Items of value which include cash, real estate, securities and investments.
A person who transfers rights and interests of a property.
- Assumable mortgage
A mortgage that can be transferred to another borrower.
- Assumption clause
A provision that allows a buyer to take responsibility for the mortgage from a seller.
- Assumption fee
A fee the lender charges to process new records for a buyer who assumes an existing loan.
- Average price
The price of a home determined by totaling the sales prices of all houses sold in an area and dividing that number by the number of homes.
- Avigation easement
An easement over private property near an airport that limits the height of structures and trees.
- Awning windows
Single-sash windows that tilt outward and up.