Real Estate Glossary - 41 Important Real Estate Terms And Definitions

Home Builder with Long Island Cash Home Buyer



Real Estate Glossary

Real Estate Glossary

Please contact us with any questions you may have concerning the following 41 important Real Estate Terms And Definitions. At RE/MAX Wittney Estates we are committed to making the home buying and selling process a stress free and positive experience for all parties. 

1. Abstract of Title  ...  History of a parcel of real estate, compiled from public record, listing transfers of ownership and claims against the property.

2. Acknowledgement ...  Formal declaration before a public official that one has signed a document.

3. Adjustable Rate Mortgage  ...  A loan whose interest rate is changed periodically to keep pace with current interest rates.

4. Amortization  ... Gradual payment of a dept through regular installments that cover both interest and principal.

5. Appraisal ...  Estimate of value of real estate, presumably by an expert.

6. Appreciation ... Increase in value or worth of property.

7. Assumable Mortgage ... A loan that may be passed to the next owner of the property.

8. Balloon Loan ... A mortgage in which a large portion of the borrowed principal is repaid in a single payment at the end of the loan period.

9.Balloon Payment  ...  Final payment on a balloon loan.

10. Bill of Sale ... Written document transferring personal property.

11. Buydown  ... The payment of additional points to a mortgage lender in return for a lower interest rate on the loan.

12. Cap  ... Limit (typically about 2%) by which an adjustable rate loan might be raised at any one time.

13. Ceiling .... Also known as a lifetime cap, limit beyond which an adjustable mortgage rate may never be raised.

14. Certificate of Occupancy .... Document issued by local government agency stating that property meets standards for occupancy.

15. Closing ... Conclusion of a real estate sale, at which time title is transferred and necessary funds change hands.

16. Closing Costs ... One-time charges paid by buyer and seller on the day property changes hands.

17.Closing Statement ... Statement prepared for buyer and seller listing debits and credits, completed by the person in charge of the closing.

18. Commitment Letter ... Written promise to grant a mortgage loan.

19. C. M. A.  ...   Comparative Market Analysis   Method used by brokers to determine the current market value of a property. 

20. Contract ... Legally enforceable agreement to do, or not to do a particular thing.

30. Conventional Mortgage ... Loan arranged between lender and borrower with no governmental guarantee or insurance.

31. Deed  ... Formal written document transferring title to real estate; a new deed is used for each transfer.

32.Earnest Money  ... Buyer’s “good faith” deposit accompany purchase offer.

33. Easement ... A permanent right to use another’s property (telephone lines, common driveway, footpath etc.)

34. Escrow  ...  Funds given to a third party to be held pending some occurrence; may refer to earnest money, funds collected by a lender for the payment of taxes and insurance charges, funds withheld at closing to insure uncompleted repairs.

34. FHA Mortgage ...  Loan made by a local lending institution and insured by the FHA, with the borrower paying the premium.

35. Lien  ... A claim against property for the payment of a debt.

36. Negative Amortization ... Arrangement under which the shortfall in mortgage payment is added to the amount borrowed.

37. PITI ... Abbreviation for principal, interest, taxes and insurance, often lumped together in a monthly payment.

38. PMI ... Private mortgage insurance.

39. Point ... One percent of a new mortgage being placed, paid in a one-time lump sum to the lender.

40. Survey ... Map made by a licensed surveyor who measures the land and charts its bounds.

42. Title Insurance ... Policy protecting the insured against loss or damage due to defects in title.

43.Title Search ... Check of the public records, usually at the local courthouse, to make sure that no adverse claims affect the value of the title.

44. VA ... Veterans’ Administration, which guarantees a veteran’s mortgage so that a lender is willing to make the loan with little or no down payment.

45. Zoning ... Laws of local government establishing building codes and regulations on usage of property.

Wittney Estates has been serving Long Island home buyers and home sellers since 1984. With sales in excess of 3 billion dollars home buyers and sellers may relax with confidence knowing that our proven track record will successfully resolve all their real estate needs. 


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Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker

Wow that is almost an A-Z list.  Great information to pass on to ones clients.  Thanks for sharing.

Dec 25, 2013 09:08 PM #1
Beth and Richard Witt
Long Island Cash Home Buyer - Huntington, NY
Long Island Cash Home Buyer 516-330-6940

You are so welcome... Happy Day

Dec 25, 2013 09:09 PM #2
Larry Lawfer
YourStories Realty Group powered by Castles Unlimited® - Newton, MA
"I listen for a living." It's all about you.

What a useful collection of terms. Thanks for posting these. Wishing you a happy, healthy and prosperous new year.

Dec 25, 2013 09:57 PM #3
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

This is good reading for first time home buyers. And, it may be helpful for some new agents.

Enjoy the holidays!

Dec 25, 2013 10:25 PM #4
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

The terms we use in real estate can be a bit daunting, and great explanation!

Dec 25, 2013 10:41 PM #5
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO
Great list. One thing we have to remember is not to speak over our clients and customers heads. We use these terms everyday. They don't. We couldn't presume to step into their business and know what they are talking about, and we need to treat them the same way.
Dec 26, 2013 12:09 PM #6
Florida Tolbert Team Keller Williams Advantage
Keller Williams Advantage III Realty in Lake Nona - Orlando, FL
Keller Williams Land Division Specialist

That's a lot of vocabulary to know and many great agents know them all. 

Dec 26, 2013 12:31 PM #7
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

Love all the further explaintion links you incorporated into this post.  Happy New Year.

Dec 27, 2013 04:42 AM #8
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

Beth, It has to be confusing to the public because it is confusing to me. Have a great weekend.

Dec 27, 2013 11:40 AM #9
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

Good information for consumers. Anyone looking to buy or sell a home in your area should call you.

Dec 27, 2013 09:07 PM #10
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Beth and Richard Witt

Long Island Cash Home Buyer 516-330-6940
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