Clause: Clause in a note or deed of trust which
"accelerates" or hastens the time when the
balance owed becomes due immediately upon the sale of the
land or when payment is overdue.
Amortization: The reduction of a loan by equal
installment payments over a given period of time
Appreciation: The increase in value such as the
increase in value of real property.
Assessed Value: Value placed on the real
property by the County Tax Assessor for tax purposes only.
Closing Costs: The costs to the buyer or seller,
or both, for loan fees, escrow fees, title insurance
policies and transfer of ownership charges.
Close of Escrow: The final procedure in which
documents are executed and recorded by the County
Condominium: A structure of 2 or more units, the
interior space of which is individually owned, the balance
of the property (including land and buildings) is owned in
common by the owners of the individual Units.
Cooperative Apartment: Also called a co-op. A
structure of 2 or more units in which the right to occupy
a unit is obtained by the purchase of stock in the
corporation which owns the building.
Counter Offer: An offer (instead of acceptance)
in response to an offer.
Deed: A written document by which the title to
the land is conveyed from one entity to another. Commonly
recorded at close of escrow.
Deed of Trust: A written document by which the
title to the property is conveyed to a trustee as security
for the repayment of a loan.
Default: Failure to fulfill a duty or promise,
or discharge an obligation such as the nonpayment of
Documentary Transfer Tax: A county and city tax
on the transfer of real property. The tax may attach
whenever the consideration given in a transaction exceeds
$100.00, exclusive of remaining liens and encumbrances.
Earnest Money: This is the deposit money given
to the real estate broker or given to the seller by the
potential buyer to show that he is serious about buying
the property. This money is applied against the down
payment but in certain circumstances may be forfeited if
the transaction does not go through.
Easement: A right or interest in the property
which entitles the holder thereof to some use, privilege
or benefit such as to place pole lines, pipe lines, or
Equity: The total value of the property less the
mortgage against it.
Exclusive Agent: The one and only real estate
broker contracted to sell a property within a given period
Exclusive Listing: An exclusive right in favor
of one real estate broker to sell a property within a
specified period of time. If the seller sells the property
himself within that period, he must pay the broker the
Fee Simple: An absolute ownership of land with
unrestricted rights of disposing of same.
Foreclosure: A procedure to deprive a person of
the right to redeem a mortgage when regular payments have
not been kept up. Foreclosure proceedings under a deed of
trust with power of sale include the public sale of the
property to satisfy the obligation.
Lien: A charge upon the property for the payment
of a debt.
Liquidated Damages: A definite amount of
damages, set forth in a contract, to be paid by the party
breaching the contract. A predetermined estimate of actual
damages from a breach.
Mechanic's Lien: A lien created by statute for
the purpose of securing priority of payment for the price
or value of work performed and materials furnished in
construction or repair of improvements to land, and which
attaches to the land as well as the improvements.
Mortgage: A written document by which land is
put up as security for the repayment of a loan.
Multiple Listing Service: Some real estate
brokers are members of an association in which they agree
to share certain listings and the sale commissions in
relations thereto with the other members.
Offer: A written promise to buy property at a
specific price and terms usually submitted on the Real
Estate Purchase Contract and Receipt for Deposit. When the
seller accepts the offer in writing, a contract is made,
providing all essential terms are covered.
Option to Purchase: The right to buy a property
at a given price within a specific period of time.
Planned Development Project: It differs from a
standard subdivision only in that it has in addition,
areas owned and used in common with the other owners of
separately owned lots.
Points: A one-time charge assessed by the
lending institution at the time the loan is made.
Preliminary Title Report: A report showing the
condition of title before a sale or loan transaction.
After completion of the transaction, a title insurance
policy is issued.
Realtor: A registered mark which identifies a
professional in real estate who subscribes to a strict
Code of Ethics as a member of the National Association of
Second Deed of Trust: When the loan secured by
the first deed of trust and the down payment do not add up
to the purchase price, a second loan secured by a second
deed trust is necessary. It usually carries a higher
interest rate and runs for a shorter period of time.
Set Back Line: Established building line to
regulate the distance from the street line at which
buildings, structures or improvements may be erected.
Title: A right to ownership of real property
Title Insurance: Evidence of title guaranteed by
the insurer in the form of a policy of title insurance. It
protects buyers and lenders against loss sustained by
reason of possible defects in the title to the property or
due to unforeseen occurrences.
Townhouse: Originally a house in a city as
opposed to a country estate. More recently the term is
applied to certain types of row houses, whether planned
unit developments or condominiums.