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Real Estate Words Glossary Archive


Qualification

Act of determining a potential buyer's needs, abilities, and urgency to buy and matching these with available properties.


Property tax

Assessment levied by city and county governments on real and personal property to generate the bulk of their operating revenues to pay for such public services as schools, libraries, and roads.


Property tax deductions

The Internal Revenue Service allows homeowners to claim as itemized personal deductions money paid for state and local realty taxes, as well as interest on debt secured by their homes. It also allows for the deduction of loan prepayment penalties, and the deduction of points on new loans.


Promissory note

A written promise to repay a debt on demand or at a stated time in the future.


Private mortgage insurance (PMI)

Required by most lenders for conventional loans with a down payment of less than 20 percent. Insurance is paid by the borrower and guarantees the lender will not lose money if the borrower defaults.


Principal

The amount of money borrowed; the amount of money still owed.


Prepayment penalty

Fee charged by the lender when a borrower repays the loan early.


Point

Fee charged by a lender to get additional revenue over the interest rate. A point is equal to one percent of the loan amount.


Plat

Map or survey showing the location and boundaries of individual properties and how they have been subdivided into lots and blocks.


Planned Unit Development (PUD)

Individually owned houses with community ownership of common areas, such as swimming pools and tennis courts.


PITI

Acronym for "principal, interest, taxes, and insurance." Frequently used to describe a loan payment that combines all four items.


Origination fee

A charge by the lender for granting and processing a new mortgage loan.


Option

The exclusive right to purchase or lease a property at a predetermined price or rent at some future time.


Open listing

Listing that gives a broker a nonexclusive right to find a buyer; the owner can still find a buyer himself and avoid a commission.


Offer

Oral or written proposal to buy a piece of property at a specified price.