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Real Estate Words Glossary Archive


Trust deed

A document used in place of a mortgage in certain states; a third-party trustee, not the lender, holds the title to the property until the loan is paid out or defaulted. Also called a deed of trust.


Townhouse

Usually a two- or three-story dwelling with shared walls, or a living unit operating under the condominium or townhouse form of ownership.


Title search

A professional examination of public records to determine the chain of ownership of a particular piece of property and to note any liens, encumbrances, easements, restrictions, or other factors that might affect the title.


Title report

A statement of the current condition of title for a parcel of land.


Title insurance

An insurance policy that protects against any losses incurred because of defects in the title not listed in the title report or abstract.


Title

Actual ownership; the right of possession; also the evidence of ownership such as a deed or bill of sale.


Time-sharing

Part ownership of a property coupled with a right to exclusive use of it for a specified number of days per year.


Tenants in common

Style of ownership in which two or more persons purchase a property jointly, but with no right of survivorship and separate undivided interests. They are free to will their share to anyone they choose, a principal difference between this form of ownership and joint tenancy.


Tenancy by the entirety

A form of joint ownership reserved for married persons; right of survivorship exists and neither spouse has a disposable interest during the lifetime of the other.


Tax shelter

A realty investment that produces income-tax deductions for its owner.


Tax sale

A court-ordered sale of real property to raise money to cover delinquent taxes.


Tax rate

The rate at which real property is taxed in a tax district or county. For example, in a certain county, real property may be taxed at a rate of 55 mills (or 0.055) per dollar of assessed valuation.


Tax basis

The price paid for a property plus certain costs and expenses, such as closing costs, legal counsel, and a commission paid to help find the property.


Tax credit

An allowed deduction that can be subtracted from your income tax. If you are entitled to a $1,500 credit, and your income tax would otherwise be $10,000, the credit would reduce the tax due to $8,500.


Survey

An exact measurement of the size and boundaries of a piece of land by civil engineers or surveyors.