Real Estate Dictionary



C HORIZON
The horizon (layer) of the Earth below the A and B horizons. Called the substratum, it is usually not affected by rain, change of temperature, or other surface conditions.
C.A.E.(CERTIFIED ASSESSMENT EVALUATOR)
An assessor who, through the completion of required courses, experience, and examination, has earned this designation by the International Association of Assessing Officers.
CABINET WORK
Any interior carpentry which will be seen and must be finished with skill and care. One who does this work is called a cabinet maker or, more commonly, a finish carpenter.
CADASTRE
Inventory of real property in a community for tax and assessment purposes.
CAISSON
A watertight chamber in which men work underwater, or in an open excavation where loose soil or sand cave in on the workers. It may also be filled with concrete after it is used, and become a support.
CAL-VET LOANS
Real estate loans available to armed forces veterans from California, at low interest rates.
CALIFORNIA RANCH ARCHITECTURE
A sprawling, one story, ranch-style building, lending itself to interior flexibility in floor plan design.
CALL
In metes and bounds description, the angle and distance of a given line or arc. Each call is usually preceeded by the word "then" or "thence". Example:N 22% E 100' (1st call), thence N 80% E 100' (2nd call). (2) To demand payment due to default. Also used when a loan payment is not large enough to amortize the loan. Example: A mortgage payment requiring 20 years to pay in full but for a term of 5 years would be referred to as a 20-year amortization with a 5- year call.
CALL DATE
Originally a term used when a bond is redeemed prior to maturity, it is now also used in describing mortgages. [See Call(2)].
CALL LOAN
A loan payable upon demand.
CALL OPTION
A clause in a note and mortgage allowing the lender to demand full payment of the loan before the full term.
CAMBER
A slight bending or arching to a convex angle. Used to prevent beams, girders, flooring, ship decks, timbers, and similar load- bearing members, from taking a concave shape.
CAMINO
A Spanish word meaning highway.
CAMPANILE
A free standing bell tower.
CANAL
(1) A man made waterway used to connect bodies of water for navigation. (2) An irrigation waterway.
CANCELLATION CLAUSE
A clause in a lease or other contract, setting forth the conditions under which each party may cancel or terminate the agreement. The conditions may be as simple as giving notice or complex and require payment by the party desiring to cancel.
CANDLE
A measure of light, being the luminous intensity of a 7/8 inch sperm candle burning at 120 grains per hour. An international candle is based on the burning of platinum.
CANDLE HOUR
A measure of light, equal to one candle burning for one hour.
CANDLE POWER
The intensity of a light, expressed in candles.
CANTILEVER
A structural support which itself is supported at one end only and bears its load through its material strength and rigidity.
CANTILEVER BRIDGE
A bridge formed by two cantilevered members extending toward each other and connecting each other or a suspended span.
CAP
(1) A maximum amount of charge. Example: An Adjustable Rate Mortgage with a 5% rate cap could not adjust the interest rate by more than 5%. (2) A fitting used to seal, such as by a plumber to seal (cap) a pipe end. (3) A cornice, lintel, or top of a structure member such as a column.
CAP (PAYMENT)
See: Payment cap.
CAP RATE (APPRAISAL)
See: Capitalization Rate.
CAPACITY
One's ability to carry on normal business transactions. Lack of capacity may be natural (unsound mind) or simply by law (a minor). Restrictions may be full or partial.
CAPE COD HOUSE
An adaption of the New England cottage. May be one or two stories with sloping roof, usually with dormer windows, cornices, and of frame painted white.
CAPITA
Literally, heads. Commonly, persons individually. See also: Per Capita.
CAPITAL
Money used to create income, either as investment in a business or income property.
CAPITAL ASSETS
Assets of a permanent nature used to produce income, such as machinery, buildings, equipment, land, etc. Must be distinguished from inventory. A machine which makes pencils, for example, would be a capital asset to pencil manufacturer, but inventory to the company whose business is to sell such machines.
CAPITAL EXPENDITURES
Money spent on improvements such as land, buildings, machinery, and similar major expenditures which are not inventory.
CAPITAL GAIN
Gain realized from the sale of a capital asset. The difference between the purchase and sale price less allowable deductions, plus depreciation.
CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT
See: Capital Expenditure.
CAPITAL LOSS
Loss from the sale of a capital asset. The difference between the purchase and sale price plus allowable deductions, less depreciation.
CAPITAL STOCK
A general term referring to the stock a corporation may issue, the amount actually subscribed by shareholders, the value of the company, liability to the shareholders, etc.
CAPITALIZATION
Determining a present value of income property by taking the annual net income (either known or estimated) and discounting by using a rate of return commonly acceptable to buyers of similar properties. For example: Net income of a property is $10,000 per year. Capitalizing at a rate of 10%, the property would be worth $100,000.
CAPITALIZATION APPROACH
See: Income Approach.
CAPITALIZATION RATE
The percentage (acceptable to an average buyer) used to determine the value of income property through capitalization.
CAPITALIZE
To determine the present money value of future income, whether estimated or fixed.
CAPITALIZED VALUE
The value of the property after use of the capitalization approach of appraisal.
CAPRICIOUS VALUE
In appraisal, a value based on whim or emotion and not reflective of the fair market value.
CAPTURE RATE
The comparison of the rate of sales or leases of real estate developments in a given market area.
CAR
California Association of Realtors.
CAR FLOAT BRIDGE
The connection (bridge) used to transfer railroad cars to or from land and a barge. The bridge must be vertically mobil to adjust to changing water levels.
CARAVAN
An inspection of newly listed properties, either by the entire sales staff of an office or by sales personnel from more than one office in conjunction with a multiple listing group. Generally conducted on a regular basis.
CARPORT
A roof supported by pillars or cantilevered which shelters a car. May either extend from a structure (usually a house) or be constructed separately (often to accommodate several cars).
CARRYBACK LOAN
See: Purchase Money Mortgage (1).
CARRYING CHARGES
The costs involved in keeping a property which is intended to produce income (either by sale or rent) but has not yet done so.
CARRYOVER BASIS
The tax basis in a tax deferred exchange which is transferred (carried over) from the property given up to the property acquired.
CASE
(1) An external framework of a structure. (2) A court action.
CASE LAW
See: Common Law.
CASEMENT WINDOW
A window hinged at its sides, allowing it to swing open vertically.
CASH
(1) Money or (2) its equivalent (checks, bank notes, etc.). Ready money.
CASH ACCOUNTING
See: Accrual Accounting.
CASH ASSETS
Money which is available to meet the requirements of operating a business.
CASH DISCOUNT
A discount from a billed amount if paid within a certain period.
CASH EQUIVALENCY ANALYSIS
An appraisal technique by which the price of comparable properties selling at different financing terms are adjusted to find market value. The theory is that terms less advantageous to the seller will cause a higher sale price; cash being most advantageous to the seller.
CASH FLOW
In investment property, the actual cash the investor will receive after deduction of operation expenses and debt service (loan payment) from his gross income.
CASH FLOW RATE
See: Cash-On-Cash.
CASH ON HAND STATEMENT
A statement of cash on hand which the buyer intends to apply to closing costs, impounds, and down payment. Also shows the source of the money (savings, gift, etc.).
CASH OUT
To take the entire amount of a seller's equity in cash rather than to retain some interest in the property, such as a purchase money mortgage or deed of trust. Also loosely used when paying off anyone having an interest in property, thereby ending the interest.
CASH RENT
A term used in farm rental to distinguish between money rent and rent paid by giving a portion of the crop to the owner (share crop).
CASH RESERVES
An amount of money sometimes required by a lender to be held in reserve in addition to the down payment and closing costs.
CASH SALE
A sale for full payment in cash, as opposed to a credit sale. A payment by check is considered cash. May be qualified, as "cash to new loan", "cash to existing loan", etc.
CASH-ON-CASH
The amount of cash received compared to the amount of cash invested. Also called the Equity Dividend Rate, Cash Flow Rate or Equity Capitalization Rate.
CASH-OUT REFINANCE
A new mortgage loan that pays off any existing debts on the property and still gives the borrower cash.
CASHIER'S CHECK
A check drawn by a bank on itself rather than on an account of a depositor. A cashier's check is generally acceptable to close a sale without waiting for the check to clear.
CASING
The exterior surface or covering of a building such as aluminum siding, a roof, etc.
CATTLE GUARD
A grill or grating placed in the ground over which cattle will not cross.
CATWALK
A narrow, elevated walkway along a wall, girders, or over a stage or other area where it may be necessary for a person to go for operation or repair.
CAUSEWAY
A raised roadbed over lowlands. See also: Levee.
CAVAEDIUM
An atrium, courtyard.
CAVEAT
"Let Him Beware" - A formal notice to a court or officer, given by an interested party, asking that the court suspend proceedings until deciding on the merits of the caveat.
CAVEAT EMPTOR
"Let the buyer beware". Legal maxim stating that the buyer takes the risk regarding quality or condition of the item purchased, unless protected by warranty or there is misrepresentation. Modernly, consumer protection laws have placed more responsibility for disclosure on the seller and broker.
CAVITY WALL
Refers to a brick or stone wall which is actually built as two separate walls, joined only at the top and ends, and so "hollow". Also called a hollow wall.
CC&R'S (COVENANTS, CONDITIONS, AND RESTRICTIONS)
A term used in some areas to describe the restrictive limitations which may be placed on property. In other areas, simply called restrictions.
CEILING
(1) The overhead interior lining of a room, building, etc. (2) A maximum amount.
CELLAR
A storage room or group of rooms, usually under a building, which are used for storage.
CEMENT
A mineral powder which, when mixed with water and allowed to set will dry hard and can be used in construction as floors, walls, etc.
CEMENT BLOCK
A building block, composed of cement, and usually hollow. See also: Cinder Block.
CEMETERY
Large parcels of land used for burying deceased persons. May be public or private, the private usually being of a specific religious denomination.
CENTRAL ASSESSMENT
An assessment of property under one ownership but located in more than one assessment district. Used for railroads and public utilities to stabilize the assessment value.
CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT
An area of a city where most of the major businesses are located. The "downtown" area.
CENTRAL CITY
(1) The downtown area of a major city. (2) A city which is central to a metropolitan area containing many cities. The name of the central city is used for the whole area. For example: Los Angeles metropolitan area.
CERCLA (COMPREHENSIVE ENVIRONMENTAL RESPONSE, COMPENSATION, AND LIABILITY ACT)
See which.
CERTIFICATE
A writing, either from a court or other public body, giving assurances of existing conditions or facts, and giving rights or creating obligations.
CERTIFICATE BACKED MORTGAGE
A variation of the buydown. The seller purchases a savings certificate (usually with the proceeds of the sale) from the lender. The lender sets the buyer's interest rate below market (generally 2 percent above the certificate rate). Should the seller withdraw the certificate funds, the buyer's rate goes to market rate.
CERTIFICATE OF DEPOSIT (C.D.)
A specific sum of money deposited into a savings institution for a specified time period, and bearing a higher rate of interest than a passbook account if left to maturity. Does not have withdrawal privileges as does a passbook account. Also called a time certificate of deposit (T.C.D.)
CERTIFICATE OF DEPOSIT INDEX
One of the many indices that may be used for interest rate changes in an adjustable rate mortgage.
CERTIFICATE OF ELIGIBILITY
A certificate obtained by a veteran from a Veteran's Administration office which states that the veteran is eligible for a V.A. insured loan. There is a list of requirements (when and how long the veteran served, type of discharge, etc.) which also may be obtained from the V.A. office.
CERTIFICATE OF OCCUPANCY
A certificate issued by a local building department to a builder or renovator, stating that the building is in proper condition to be occupied.
CERTIFICATE OF PURCHASE
See: Certificate of Sale.
CERTIFICATE OF REASONABLE VALUE
A certificate giving the estimate of value on which to base a loan guaranteed by the Veterans Administration.
CERTIFICATE OF REDEMPTION
Evidence of redeeming (buying back) a property by the owner after losing it through a judicial sale. The time limit for redemption is set by statute.
CERTIFICATE OF SALE
Certificate issued to the buyer at a judicial sale (such as a tax sale), which will entitle the buyer to a deed upon confirmation of the sale by the court or if the land is not redeemed within a specified time.
CERTIFICATE OF TITLE
In areas where attorneys examine abstracts or chains of title, a written opinion, executed by the examining attorney, stating that title is vested as stated in the abstract.
CERTIFICATE OF VETERAN STATUS
The evidence of eligibility given to a veteran by the VA. The certificate gives the veteran status to obtain certain loans with less money down.
CERTIFIED CHECK
A personal check drawn by an individual which is certified (guaranteed) to be good. The bank holds the funds to pay the certified check and will not pay any other checks drawn on the account if such payment would impede payment of the certified check. The bank also will not honor a stop payment of a certified check.
CERTIFIED COMMERCIAL INVESTMENT MEMBER (CCIM)
A designation conferred by the Commercial Investment Real Estate Institute, an affiliate of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS. The designation recognizes expertise in many different areas including commercial real estate sales, leasing, property management, appraisal, development, lending and investment counseling.
CERTIFIED COPY
A true copy, attested to be true by the office holding the original.
CERTIFIED MORTGAGE BANKER (CMB)
A designation conferred by the Mortgage Bankers Association of America (MBA) to employees of its member companies after experience, educational and testing requirements have been met.
CERTIFIED PROPERTY MANAGER (CPM)
A professional awarded to real estate managers by the Institute of designation Real-Estate Management,an affiliate of the National Association of Realtors. Address: Institute of Real Estate Management 430 North Michigan Avenue Chicago, IL 60611
CERTIFIED PUBLIC ACCOUNTANT (CPA)
A designation awarded to accountants by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) after completing the required education and passing a national exam. Only CPA's may audit HUD programs unless registered before 1970.
CERTIFIED REAL ESTATE BROKERAGE MANAGER (CRB)
A designation conferred by the Real Estate Brokerage Managers Council upon a brokerage owner or manager who is an expert in the field.
CERTIFIED RESIDENDIAL SPECIALIST (CRS)
A designation conferred by The Council of Residential Specialists upon those who have successfully completed the required courses and are experts in residential real estate transactions.
CERTIORARI
An appellate review of the complete record of a lower court action, rather then simply a review of an appeal for judicial error.
CESSPOOL
A pit or pool which holds raw sewage.
CESTUI QUE TRUST
One having an equitable interest in property, legal title being vested in a trustee.
CESTUI QUE VIE
The person whose life is used to determine the length of an estate based on a life in being.
CHAIN
See: Chain Of Title; Chains And Links.
CHAIN OF TITLE
The chronological order of conveyancing of a parcel of land, from the original owner (usually the government) to the present owner.
CHAIN STORE
A store belonging to a series of similar stores under central ownership and management, and striving for uniformity in design, inventory, and service.
CHAINS AND LINKS
Measurements. In real estate measurements (surveying) a chain is 66' long or 100 links, each link being 7.92". The measurement may change when used in fields other than surveying.
CHANGE
The principle that no physical or economic condition remains the same.
CHANGE FREQUENCY
The time between adjustments of interest and payment on a adjustable rate mortgage.
CHANGE OF NAME
When there is a name change of a party appearing on a document (deed, etc.), it may be reflected in several ways, such as (1) Mary Smith, a married woman, W.A.T.A. (who acquired title as) Mary Jones, an unmarried woman. (2) Mary Smith AKA (also known as) Mary Jones. (3) Mary Smith, formerly Mary Jones. (4) Mary Smith, alias Mary Jones. Each may be applicable in different circumstances (how and why the name was changed).
CHANGE ORDER
In construction, a written instruction to alter the original construction plan.
CHANNEL
(1) An open or closed duct or conduit. (2) A gutter, furrow, or groove. (3) The deepest part of a natural waterway through which the main current flows, and which affords the best passageway for ships.
CHANNELIZATION
The term used to describe traffic direction. Traffic is "channeled" by use of one way streets, signs directing turns, island barriers, etc.
CHAPEL
(1) A place of worship apart from a church, such as a hospital chapel, college chapel, etc. Generally for a small group. (2) A portion of a church secondary and subordinate to the main alter.
CHARGE-OFF
The unpaid balance of a loan that a lender writes off as a bad debt.
CHATTEL
Personal property.
CHATTEL MORTGAGE
A lien on personal property. Also called a security interest or financing statement.
CHATTEL REAL
All estates in real property less than fee estates, such as a lease.
CHECK ROW
A method of planting rows of plants on intersecting lines, forming a "checkerboard" effect. Used for corn, tomatoes, and other vegetables.
CHECK VALVE
A valve to prevent backup of material being carried through a pipe or other conduit.
CHILD CARE STATEMENT
A statement by a working husband and wife showing the amount paid for child care and to whom paid.
CHIMNEY
Any passage through which smoke from a fire passes. Most commonly the passage, constructed of brick, from a fireplace to above the roof of a building.
CHIMNEY BACK
The back wall or lining of a fireplace or furnace chimney.
CHIMNEY FLASHING
See: Flashing.
CHIMNEY POT
An earthenware or metal pipe or deflector, projecting from the top of the chimney to increase draft and reduce and disperse smoke.
CHOSE IN ACTION
A right to an action for recovery of a debt or to possession of anything held by another. The right to possession rather than possession.
CHOSE IN POSSESSION
Something in possession, rather than the right to possession.
CHURCH
A public place of worship, usually Christian worship. See also: Synagogue; Temple.
CID
See: Common Interest Development.
CIENAGA
A Spanish word meaning a swamp or marsh, formed by hillside springs.
CINDER BLOCK
A building block composed of cinders (ashes) and cement, which does not have the weight or strength of a cement block.
CIRCLEHEAD WINDOW
A semicircular window, usually above a door, which has no moving parts and is used as a decoration as well as to admit light.
CIRCUIT BREAKER
An electrical device which has taken the place of the fuse in most buildings. The circuit is broken (electricity shut-off) when there is an overload. The circuit breaker can be reset rather than replaced as a fuse must be.
CIRCULATION PATTERN
The regular traffic pattern, as from a residential area to a business district and back.
CIRCUMFERENTIAL HIGHWAY
A highway which arcs around the central business district of a city. Also called a belt highway or by-pass.
CISTERN
A tank used for storing rain water for use in areas where there is no water brought to the property by plumbing.
CITY
Technically, a municipal corporation having voting by represen-tatives to operate its functions, rather than direct voting, as in a town. Commonly, any large incorporated town is called a city.
CITY PLAN
See; Master Plan .
CIVIL ACTION
Any action which is not a criminal action.
CIVIL LAW
(1) Roman Law. The legal system derived from the Romans which is prevalent in most of the non-English speaking countries, and, to some degree, in Louisiana. Differs from Common Law of England, from which United States Law is derived. (2) Any laws which are not criminal laws.
CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964
An act passed to strengthen the Civil Rights Act of 1866. The act, among other things, prohibits discrimination in housing.
CLAIM
An assertion of some right or demand.
CLAPBOARD
Narrow boards used as siding for frame houses, and having one edge thicker than the other. The boards run horizontally with the thicker edge overlapping the thinner edge.
CLARIFIER
Underground system of tanks with filters or chemical agents designed to remove or neutralize harmful wastes from water before emptying said water into a sewer or septic tank.
CLASS ACTION
An action brought on behalf of a group of people having a similar claim. Has become increasingly popular in the consumer movement, and is a strong weapon against unfair pricing when the price of overcharging in one instance would be too minor to bring suit.
CLASSIFIED LOAN
A substandard loan which a bank should not have made.
CLASSIFIED PROPERTY TAX
Property tax which varies in rate depending on the use (zoning classification) of the property.
CLEAN ROOM
A room specially designed to have a controlled atmosphere, for health reasons or experimentation accuracy, such as a germ free room or a dust free room.
CLEAN WATER ACT
A federal act, first adopted in 1977, to stop pollution of waterways and protect wildlife and recreational areas.
CLEAR HEADWAY
The height of the lowest overhead framing member (usually the top of the door frame) as measured from the floor.
CLEAR LUMBER
High quality lumber "clear" of most defects, particularly knots.
CLEAR SPAN
An interior area which does not use columns or posts to hold up the roof, thereby creating a large, open area with maximum visibility and use of the floor space.
CLEAR TITLE
See: Free and Clear.
CLEARANCE
(1) The removal of structures from an area for urban renewal. (2) The maximum height of a vehicle which may safely pass under a bridge or through a tunnel.
CLERESTORY
A wall or portion of a wall to which the roof attaches at a higher level than the other walls or portions of a wall of a building. Generally found in church construction and contains windows.
CLERESTORY WINDOW
Window in a clerestory.
CLIENT
Traditionally one who employs an attorney. Has loosely been used to refer to the principal of a real estate agent, insurance agent, stock broker, etc.
CLOSE CORPORATION
(1) A corporation not allowing its shareholders to vote for directors or officers. (2) A corporation owned by a small group of shareholders and not having publicly traded stock. Commonly, and incorrectly, called a closed corporation.
CLOSED CORPORATION
See: Close Corporation.
CLOSED END MORTGAGE
A mortgage that does not allow the borrower to increase the amount borrowed over the term of the mortgage. See also: Open End Mortgage.
CLOSED END MUTUAL FUND
A fund (sometimes dealing in real estate or mortgages) which is not accepting new investors. The shares in the fund are bought and sold, either at a premium, par, or a discount, based on the success of the fund. The shares are not sold and redeemed through the fund but on the open market. The same technique is used with closed end trusts.
CLOSED MORTGAGE
See: Lock-in.
CLOSING
(1) In real estate sales, the final procedure in which documents are executed and/or recorded, and the sale (or loan) is completed. (2) A selling term meaning the point at which the client or customer is asked to agree to the sale or purchase and sign the contract. (3) The final call in a metes and bounds legal description which "closes" the boundaries of the property.
CLOSING COSTS
Expenses incidental to a sale of real estate, such as loan fees, title fees, appraisal fees, etc.
CLOSING STATEMENT
The statement which lists the financial settlement between buyer and seller, and also the costs each must pay. A separate statement for buyer and seller is sometimes prepared.
CLOUD
See: Cloud on Title.
CLOUD ON TITLE
An invalid encumbrance on real property, which, if valid, would affect the rights of the owner. For example: A sells lot 1, tract 1, to B. The deed is mistakenly drawn to read lot 2, tract 1. A cloud is created on lot 2 by the recording of the erroneous deed. The cloud may be removed by quitclaim deed, or, if necessary, by court action.
CLOVERLEAF
An intersection using loop shaped ramps and grade separation to accomplish the intersecting of traffic without signal lights or stop signs. When viewed from above, the shape of the intersection resembles a cloverleaf.
CLOVERLEAFING
A method of real estate canvassing by looping around a specific property (one listed or sold) in the shape of a cloverleaf, in order to obtain listings or buyers.
CLUSTER HOUSING
Building houses close together with little yard space and a large common area, rather than each house having a large yard. The density is usually greater in the cluster project.
CLUSTER ZONING
Zoning allowing the construction of buildings closer together than normal (clustered) and then requiring the balance of the property to be kept as open space.
CLUSTERING
See: Cluster Housing.
CMB
See: Certified Mortgage Banker.
CMO
See Collateralized Mortgage Obligation.
CO-ADMINISTRATOR
One who shares the duties of administrator with one or more other administrators.
CO-EXECUTOR
One who shares the duties of executor with one or more other executors.
CO-MAKER
A surety (see which) under a loan. The co-maker is equally responsible for repayment as the borrower (maker).
CO-MORTGAGOR
One who signs a mortgage with another as borrower. The term is often applied to one who intends to guaranty the loan even though co-mortgagors have equal liability.
CO-OP
See: Cooperative apartment.
CO-ORDINATES
A general term encompassing a number of methods to determine the position of intersecting lines, planes, points, etc.
CO-OWNERSHIP
Ownership by two or more persons or entities. See also: Equitable Ownership; Legal Owner.
CO-SIGNATORY
See: Co-maker.
CO-TRUSTEE
One who shares the duties of trustee with one or more other trustees.
COAST
The seashore or land near it.
COASTAL COMMISSION
A commission set up to control construction in coastal areas.
CODE
A comprehensive set of laws drawn up to cover completely a given subject. Covers diverse subjects, such as the criminal code, and the building code.
CODE OF ETHICS
See: Ethics.
CODICIL
An addition to a will, which modifies the will by adding to it, subtracting from it, or clarifying it.
COFFERDAM
See: Caisson.
COFI (COST OF FUNDS INDEX)
One of the many indexes used to determine rate changes for an adjustable rate mortgage. COFI is considered a good index for the borrower.
COGNOVIT NOTE
A note in which a debtor confesses judgement in the event of nonpayment and waives all defenses.
COIGN, COIGNE
A cornerstone, usually differing in size (and sometimes material) from the rest of the wall, also spelled quoin.
COINSURANCE
A sharing of the risk of an insurance policy by more than one insurer. Usually one insurer is liable up to a certain amount; the other liable over that amount.
COINSURANCE CLAUSE
A requirement by an insurer that the property owner carry insurance equal to a specified percentage of the value of the property.
COLD CANVASS
Soliciting door to door or by phone without any previous contact. A good method for a salesperson to begin to establish a farm area. See: Farm (3).
COLLAPSIBLE CORPORATION
A corporation which is sold instead of its product, in order to create a capital gain rather than ordinary income for tax purposes. For example: A and B (persons) are real estate developers who want to build an office building to sell. They form a corporation which builds the building. Then, rather than selling the building, A and B sell the corporation, claiming capital gain on the stock profit. Federal tax laws regulate such transactions.
COLLAR TIE
See: Tie Beam.
COLLATERAL
By or at the side, additional or auxiliary. Mistakenly used to mean collateral security.
COLLATERAL ASSIGNMENT
An assignment of property as collateral security, and not with the intent to transfer ownership from assignor to assignee.
COLLATERAL HEIR
One not in a direct line of descent of inheritance. Example: A nephew, not a son.
COLLATERAL NOTE
A promissory note secured by specific property.
COLLATERAL SECURITY
Most commonly used to mean some security in addition to the personal obligation of the borrower.
COLLATERALIZED MORTGAGE OBLIGATION
A mortgage-backed security. CMOs are similar to mortgage-backed securities except that CMOs offer the option of short or long maturity. The future cash flows from a group of mortgages are split into varying length classes to satisfy the needs of investors who seek different maturity lengths. (See: Mortgage-Backed Securities).
COLLUSION
An agreement of two or more people to do something unlawful. Generally, an agreement between people who represent different interests and "sell out" these interests for personal gain.
COLONIAL ARCHITECTURE
Two story houses with windows divided into small panes, usually with shutters. The main facade is detailed and symmetrical, generally with a center entrance. Architecture following the style of New England colonial houses.
COLONNADE
Columns, regularly spaced, which support an architrave. See also: Peristyle; Portico.
COLOR OF TITLE
That which gives the appearance of good title, but actually contains some defect. For example: A conveyance given without the grantor having good title.
COLUMN
A large vertical support member of a structure. A pillar, usually cylindrical.
COLUMN FOOTINGS
The support bases for load-bearing columns. Generally composed of reinforced concrete.
COLUMN LOTS
Small lots for the placement of columns to support a structure, such as a billboard or other structure which has its largest parts not touching the ground.
COLUMN STEEL
Steel used inside a column for reinforcement.
COMBED PLYWOOD
An interior paneling, grooved as if by a comb.
COMBINATION ADVANCE REVERSE MORTGAGE
Under this arrangement, the borrower receives a lump sum. This is most commonly used to pay off an existing mortgage, make repairs on the property, or pay consumer debt. The balance of the loan is made in periodic (monthly) payments. See also: Reverse Mortgage.
COMBINATION DOOR
An outer door using interchangeable panels of glass and screen, depending on the weather.
COMBINATION SEWER
A sewer that is both a sanitary and storm sewer.
COMBINATION WINDOW
A window using interchangeable panels of glass and screen, depending on the weather.
COMMENSURATE PROPERTY
See: Base Property.
COMMERCIAL ACRE
See: Net Acre.
COMMERCIAL BANK
An institution for savings, loans, checking accounts, and other services not all of which are found in savings and loan institutions. Banks are generally more active in construction loans rather than long term real estate financing
COMMERCIAL BROKER
A licensed real estate broker specializing in improved commercial property or offices.
COMMERCIAL INESTMENT REAL ESTATE INSTITUTE
An affiliate of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS which strives to improve the level of competency of those engaged in Commercial-Investment real estate, and which confers the designation of Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM).
COMMERCIAL PAPER
Negotiable instruments used in the course of business, such as promissory notes, which are bought and sold (usually at a discount).
COMMERCIAL PROPERTY
Property which is zoned "commercial" (for business use). Property such as stores, restaurants, etc., falling between residential and industrial.
COMMINGLING
To mix funds held in trust with other funds. For example: A broker or builder mixes deposits (should be in a trust account) with his funds by putting the deposits in his general account. Although commingling is in itself a violation for which a broker may lose his license, it does not mean that, by commingling, the broker or builder intended to misappropriate the funds. See also: Conversion (2).
COMMISSION
An amount, usually as a percentage, paid to an agent (real estate broker) as compensation for his services. The amount to a real estate broker is generally a percentage of the sale price or total rental.
COMMISSION POINT
See: Point (2).
COMMITMENT
(1) Title insurance term for the preliminary report issued before the actual policy. Said report shows the condition of title and the steps necessary to complete the transfer of title as contemplated by the buyer and seller. (2) A written promise to make or insure a loan for a specified amount and on specified terms.
COMMITMENT FEE
A fee paid for a loan commitment. See: Commit-ment (2).
COMMITMENT LETTER
See: Commitment (2).
COMMON AREA
The area owned in common by the owners of condominiums or planned unit development homes in a subdivision.
COMMON AREA ASSESSMENTS
The levies (assessments) charged to owners of condominiums or planned unit developments for the cost of common area maintenance and home owner association costs.
COMMON BRICK
A brick having no special surface treatment, making each brick different in color. Used to describe a surface of bricks which are artificially treated so that each is different in color.
COMMON ELEMENTS
See: Common Area.
COMMON INTEREST DEVELOPMENT
A general term used to describe any type of clustered buildings with shared land ownership, such as condominiums and planned developments. CID's, as they are called, must have individual ownership or exclusive right to occupy, combined with shared ownership.
COMMON LAW
The body of laws, originated and developed in England, which was adopted by most states and still prevails if not superseded by statute. Also referred to as case law.
COMMON LAW MORTGAGE
Any mortgage which contains the elements of a mortgage according to the Common Law.
COMMON OF ESTOVERS
See: Estovers.
COMMON STOCK
A share of ownership in a corporation.
COMMON WALL
See: Party Wall.
COMMUNITY APARTMENT
A form of common interest development under which title to the entire development is shared, with an exclusive right to occupy each unit given to the various title holders.
COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION
See: Home Owner's Association.
COMMUNITY HOME IMPROVEMENT MORTGAGE
A loan for low to moderate income buyers to borrow more than the usual 80% loan to value when a portion of the funds will be used to improve or make repairs on the property. The theory is that improvement of individual properties will benefit the whole community.
COMMUNITY PROPERTY
Property owned in common by a husband and wife, which is not separate property. A classification of property peculiar to certain states.
COMMUNITY REINVESTMENT ACT
Federal legislation of 1977 (and subsequent amendments) for the purpose of encouraging banks and thrifts (savings and loans) to make more loans in their local areas. The act created the National Consumer Cooperative Bank to make loans to local banks and thrifts for community investment (loans) and also to guarantee certain loans made in the local community.
COMMUNITY SECOND MORTGAGE
A junior mortgage subsidized by a state or local government agency or nonprofit organization enabling low to moderate income buyers to purchase a home with less of a down payment. The mortgage will have a below market interest rate and the principal may not have to be repaid if the buyer stays in the home for a certain period. The details of this type of loan vary by location.
COMMUNITY SHOPPING CENTER
An intermediate size shopping center. May contain a small department store and coordinated small shops. Larger than a neighborhood center and smaller than a regional center.
COMPACTION
The pressing together and joining of sedimentary layers of ground by the pressure of the weight of overlying layers. A report showing the density of the soil and its make-up is required in some areas before permits for construction will be issued.
COMPARABLES
Properties used as comparisons to determine the value of a specific property.
COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS
See: Market Value Approach.
COMPARATIVE MARKET ANALYSIS
See: Market Data Approach.
COMPARATIVE METHOD
A method of estimating replacement construction cost by comparing the property to be built with the cost per square foot or cost per cubic foot of a similar building.
COMPARISON METHOD
See: Market Data Approach.
COMPENSATING BALANCE
Funds deposited into a bank, savings and loan association, or other lending institution, to induce the lender to make a specific loan or establish a line of credit. The deposit may be made by the party desiring the loan, or a third party.
COMPENSATION
A payment to make amends for the abridgement of rights or an injury. In condemnation, the payment for the taking of a person's property without the owner's consent.
COMPENSATORY DAMAGES
Damages to cover a loss or injury and nothing more. See also: Exemplary Damages.
COMPETENT
Legally fit. Having the necessary age, ability, and authority to accomplish any given acts or duties.
COMPETITION
The appraisal principle that states that excess profits generate competition.
COMPETITIVE MARKET ANALYSIS (CMA)
See: Market Data Approach.
COMPLETION BOND
A bond protecting against failure to complete construction.
COMPONENT CONSTRUCTION
Also called modular construction or prefabrication. See also: Prefabrication.
COMPONENT DEPRECIATION
Allocating separate effective lives to components of a building and depreciating each separately.
COMPONENT PANEL
A modular (prefabricated) wall, fully finished, which is installed as a part of a building.
COMPOSITE RATE
A rate reflecting both the income flow of a building (or other depreciating asset) and the recapture of invested capital.
COMPOSITION
(1) A mixture of gravel and stones embedded in a heavy tar roof shingle, and called a "composition" roof. (2) A creditor's composition, (see which).
COMPOUND AMOUNT OF AN ANNUITY
The total amount at the end of a given period, including investment and reinvestment of the annuity payments.
COMPOUND AMOUNT OF AN INVESTED SUM
The total amount at the end of a given period, including the reinvestment of all interest plus the original amount invested.
COMPOUND INTEREST
Interest paid on accumulated interest as well as on the principal.
COMPOUND SLOPE
A slope composed of two or more separate slopes with different grade angles.
COMPREHENSIVE COMMUNITY PLAN
See: Master Plan.
COMPREHENSIVE ENVIRONMENTAL RESPONSE, COMPENSATION, AND LIABILITY ACT
The federal legislation which established the Superfund to hasten the cleanup of contaminated property. The strength of the act is that there is strict liability, joint and several liability, and liability is retroactive. See also: Joint and Several Liability; Strict Liability; Superfund.
COMPS
See: Comparables.
COMPUTER LISTING
A system of processing listings through a computer so that anyone belonging to the service may learn of the listing through a telephone call directly into the computer. The listings are coded by area, number of bedrooms, and other features of the property.
CONCAVE
Having an angle or curvature less than 180 degrees.
CONCEALED HEATING
See: Radiant Heating.
CONCESSION
A granting of a right, by government or privately, usually for use of land or area in a building to carry on a business.
CONCRETE
A cement mixture containing sand and gravel which is combined by mixing with water, poured to a desired shape, and hardens as it dries. See also: Poststressed Concrete; Prestressed Concrete; Reinforced Concrete.
CONCRETE (PLAIN)
A concrete which has not been prestressed, poststressed, or reinforced in any way except possibly to hinder shrinkage or expansion caused by temperature changes.
CONCRETE CONSTRUCTION
See: Architectural Concrete Construc-tion; Reinforced Concrete Construction.
CONCRETE SLAB FOUNDATION
A poured foundation consisting of concrete beams at the perimeter and center of a reinforced slab, which gives the slab support. See: Floating Slab; Monolithic Slab; Rebar.
CONCRETE TILT-UP
An inexpensive method of constructing walls by pouring concrete into forms flat on the ground, allowing to harden, then raising the forms by a crane or block and tackle to a vertical position, thereby forming the wall.
CONCRETION
A mineral mixture which forms, generally in rock of a different composition, various size grains or modules.
CONCURRENT EXCHANGE
An exchange of properties under section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Service Code that close (transfer) simultaneously.
CONDEMNATION
(1) The taking of private property for public use. Consent of the owner is not required but fair compensation must be paid. See also: Eminent Domain. (2) Declaring property unfit, usually for violations of health and/or safety codes.
CONDEMNATION VALUE
Market value paid upon condemnation.
CONDEMNEE
The owner of property taken by condemnation (eminent domain).
CONDEMNER
The party taking property by condemnation (eminent domain).
CONDENSATION
The forming of water on a barrier from warm air meeting cooler air, as in air conditioning units.
CONDENSATION DUCT
A duct which carries away the water given off by condensation from an air conditioning unit.
CONDITION
In real property law, some limiting restriction to a grant or conveyance of property, stating that upon the happening or not happening of a stated event, the estate shall be changed in some manner.
CONDITION PRECEDENT
A condition to be performed before an agreement becomes effective or some right vests or accrues.
CONDITION SUBSEQUENT
A condition following an agreement, the happening of which changes the estate.
CONDITIONAL COMMITMENT
A loan commitment given before a borrower (buyer) is obtained, and subject to approval of the buyer by the lender.
CONDITIONAL OFFER
An offer conditioned upon some event, such as the buyer being approved for a loan, an appraisal above a certain amount or a favorable termite report.
CONDITIONAL SALE OF REAL PROPERTY
See: Land Contract.
CONDITIONAL SALES CONTRACT
A sale in which the title to property or goods remains with the seller until the purchaser has fulfilled the terms of the contract, usually payment in full. See also: Land Contract.
CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT
Approval by the government body that controls zoning of a use not permitted by the zoning. The procedure is less complicated than applying for a change of zoning.
CONDOMINIUM
A structure of two or more units, the interior space of which are individually owned; the balance of the property (both land and building) is owned in common by the owners of the individual units. The size of each unit is measured from the interior surfaces (exclusive of paint or other finishes) of the exterior walls, floors, and ceiling. The balance of the property is called the common area.
CONDOMINIUM CONVERSION
The changing of rental property (two or more units) to condominium ownership. Physical changes, as well as paperwork, may be necessary to conform to building and safety codes.
CONDOMINIUM MAP (PLAN)
A recorded map showing the condominium units and common area. The map includes both horizontal and vertical measurements of the units. It is important that the map agree with the declaration of restrictions (recorded at the same time).
CONDOMINIUM OWNER'S ASSOCIATION
See: Home Owner's Association(2).
CONDUCTION
Transmission of electricity or heat through a conductor.
CONDUCTOR
A material (usually metal) which can transmit electrical current or heat.
CONDUIT
A natural channel for the flow of water, or artificial channel, such as a pipe, used for conveying and protecting water, wires, or other materials.See Which: Real Estate Mortgage Investment Conduit.
CONDUIT SYSTEM
A system of metal casings (conduits) containing wiring and conductors.
CONDUIT, ELECTRICAL
A metal pipe, usually flexible, through which electrical wiring is installed.
CONFESSION OF JUDGMENT
The written, voluntary, submission of a debtor to a judgment by a creditor for a specified amount.
CONFIGURATION
Outline of a shape.
CONFIRMATION DEED
See: Rerecording.
CONFIRMATION OF SALE
See: Order Confirming Sale.
CONFORMING LOAN
A mortgage loan that follows the requirements for sale in the secondary market to FHLMC or FNMA.
CONFORMITY, PRINCIPLE OF
An appraisal term stating that general uniformity of structures in an area produces highest value.
CONGRUOUS
Suitable or appropriate. In appraisal, a property which conforms to the area.
CONSANGUINITY
Blood relationship, rather than legal relationship (through marriage).See also: Affinity.
CONSENT JUDGMENT
A written agreement between plaintiff and defendant to have a judgment entered and recorded. Although the court does no actual finding for one party or the other, the judgment, once approved by the court, is binding on both parties.
CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES
Damages created by a change in other property. An owner's right to compensation varies with state statutes. See also: Lateral Support: Inverse Condemnation.
CONSERVATION
(1) Care and preservation of natural resources. (2) Preservation, though zoning, of improved areas to maintain the quality of the area.
CONSERVATOR
A guardian, court appointed.
CONSIDERATION
Anything which is, legally, of value, and induces one to enter into a contract.
CONSOLIDATION
(1) The coming together, either through merger or partial ownership, of two or more companies. (2) The solidification of loose material or liquid, usually under pressure.
CONSTANT
See: Loan Constant.
CONSTANT PAYMENT LOAN
See: Interest Included Note.
CONSTRUCTION COST
The total cost of building, including overhead and profits as well as land, labor, and materials.
CONSTRUCTION LOAN
Short term financing of real estate construction. Generally followed by long term financing called a "take out" loan, issued upon completion of improvements.
CONSTRUCTIVE EVICTION
(1) Regarding a landlord and tenant relationship, constructive eviction is any act by the landlord which substantially interferes with the tenant's use and enjoyment of the leased property, but is not actual eviction. (2) The inability of the buyer to obtain possession because of a superior title of a third party. This constitutes a breach of the covenant of quiet enjoyment warranted by the seller.
CONSTRUCTIVE MORTGAGE
See: Equitable Mortgage.
CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE
Notice given by publishing in a newspaper, recording, or other method which legally notifies the parties involved, but may not actually notify them.
CONSTRUCTIVE RECEIPT
The controlling by the taxpayer of funds from the sale of the relinquished property under a 1031 exchange rather than direct reinvestment into the replacement property. This will cause the taxpayer to lose the tax free status.
CONSTRUCTIVE TRUST
A trust created by operation of law to change an inequitable situation. If one acquires title to property through fraud, the court will hold that the legal owner holds in trust for those who really should have ownership. Also called an involuntary trust.
CONSUMER LENDING
Loans made for personal property, such as automobiles, appliances, etc.
CONSUMER PRICE INDEX
See: Cost of Living Index.
CONSUMER REPORTING BUREAU
See: Credit Bureau.
CONTEMPORARY ARCHITECTURE
A general term encompassing any number of modern designs which do not conform to any traditional architectural styles.
CONTIGUOUS
Near or close to, whether actually touching or not. Generally refers to actual touching or bordering on.
CONTINGENCY
Commonly, the dependence upon a stated event which must occur before a contract is binding. For example: The sale of a house, contingent upon the buyer obtaining financing.
CONTINGENT BENEFICIARY
One who, under the terms of a will or trust, may or may not share in the estate upon the happening of an uncertain event. Example: A leaves property to B when B reaches 30, stipulating that if B dies before 30, property goes to C. C is the contingent beneficiary.
CONTINGENT FEES
Fees to be paid only in the event of a future occurrence. A broker's commission is paid only if the property is sold or leased (unless otherwise agreed upon). Attorneys (especially in negligence cases) may be paid based on winning the suit and collecting damages.
CONTINGENT INTEREST
An interest subject to the occurrence of a specified but uncertain event.
CONTINGENT REMAINDER
A remainder interest uncertain as to the persons in interest or the occurrence of an event. Example: A grants to B for life, then to the children of C. At the time of the grant C has no children but may have when B dies.
CONTOUR FURROWS
Furrows plowed laterally across a slope to control water running down the slope.
CONTOUR LINE
(1) A line showing the shape (outline) of a parcel of land or body of water. (2) A line on a topographical map connecting all portions of the property which have the same elevation.
CONTOUR MAP
A map which uses lines (most always curved) to outline the configuration and elevation of surface areas.
CONTRACT
A legally enforceable promise or agreement consisting of offer, acceptance and consideration or a legally acceptable consideration substitute.
CONTRACT FOR DEED
See: Land Contract.
CONTRACT OF SALE
In some areas of the country, synonymous with land contract. In other areas synonymous with purchase agreement.
CONTRACT RATE
The interest rate on a specific note as opposed to the market rate.
CONTRACT RENT
Rent paid under a lease. The actual rent as opposed to the market rental value of the property.
CONTRACTOR
See: General Contractor; Subcontractor.
CONTRACTOR'S OVERHEAD
Expenses over and above labor and materials, such as return on money invested, carrying costs of land, office expense, interest on loans, etc.
CONTRACTOR'S PROFIT
Price at which property is sold, less costs of land, labor and materials, and overhead.
CONTRACTUAL LIEN
A voluntary lien such as a mortgage or deed of trust.
CONTRIBUTION
(1) The right of one who pays a common liability to recover from the others who share the liability. Example: A, B and C own property. A pays the property tax. A may recover from B and C that portion which B and C should have paid. (2) Decreasing the gifts in a will to pay creditors of the estate or those entitled to a portion of the estate who have been omitted. See also: Abatement.
CONTROL
Referring to traffic, the term is used to indicate a traffic light or stop sign at an intersection, which slows (controls) traffic. A retail site, such as a gas station or fast food restaurant, prefers a corner location with control.
CONTROLLED ACCESS HIGHWAY
See: Limited Access Highway.
CONTROLS
In government projects such as urban renewal, the limits on use, density, and other limits which would be contained in zoning laws in a private venture.
CONVECTION
In heating, the motion created by the gravitational pull on air or water at different temperatures, and therefore, different densities.
CONVENTIONAL LOAN
A mortgage or deed of trust not obtained under a government insured program, (such as F.H.A. or V.A.).
CONVENTIONAL MORTGAGE
See: Conventional Loan.
CONVERSION
(1) A legal term referring to the "legal" changing from real to personal property (or vice versa), although there is no actual change in the property. (2) A taking of something for one's own use which was originally in his possession only to hold for the owner. (3) The changing of an apartment to a condominium.
CONVERTIBILITY CLAUSE
The provision in a convertible adjustable rate mortgage giving the borrower the option of changing to a fixed rate at specified times during the term of the mortgage.
CONVERTIBLE ADJUSTABLE RATE MORTGAGE
An adjustable rate mortgage that gives the borrower the option to change to a fixed rate at specified times during the term of the loan.
CONVERTIBLE MORTGAGE
A mortgage which enables the lender to take (convert to) an equity (ownership) position in the collateral security (real estate) as opposed to that of a lienholder.
CONVEX
Having an angle or curvature greater than 180 degrees.
CONVEY
To transfer title to property. See also: Conveyance.
CONVEYANCE
Transfer of title to land. Includes most instruments by which an interest in real estate is created, mortgaged, or assigned.
CONVEYANCE TAX
See: Transfer Tax.
COOP
A structure to shelter chickens.
COOPERATING BROKER
The broker who finds the buyer and so shares in the commission with the listing broker.
COOPERATION CLAUSE
A clause in the purchase agreements of both the relinquished and replacement properties in a 1031 exchange stating that the parties agree to do what is required (cooperate) by the IRS rules.
COOPERATIVE
See: Stock Cooperative.
COOPERATIVE APARTMENT
Also called a stock cooperative or a co-op. A structure of two 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. Difficult to obtain financing because there is not individual ownership of each unit. A forerunner of the condominium.
COPING
The top or "cap" of a wall, usually convex to permit the runoff of water.
COPSE
A small wooded area. A thicket of trees or bushes.
CORBEL
A timber or stone, set in and projecting from a wall, and used to support a load.
CORD
A measure, usually associated with cut wood. 128 cubic feet of cut wood, or a pile 4' high, 4' wide, and 8' long.
CORNER
Most commonly, the acute angle formed by intersecting streets or walls.
CORNER BEAD
A reinforcement placed in corners before plastering. Commonly a strip of iron with metal lath.
CORNER BOARDS
The boards (trim) covering the outside corners of a frame building.
CORNER BRACES
Braces nailed diagonally to the studs as a reinforcement at corners.
CORNER INFLUENCE
In appraisal, the effect on the value of a property because it is on a corner or near a corner.
CORNER LOT
A lot contiguous to two intersecting streets, and, for purposes of value, having access to both streets.
CORNICE
The "crowning" member of a wall. The top molding or facade, generally of a decorative nature.
CORPORATE RESOLUTION
An action taken by vote of the directors of a corporation. A title insurance company may require a corporate resolution before insuring a sale or loan made by a corporation.
CORPORATION
A general term encompassing any group of people "incorporating" by following certain statutory procedures. Most common type of corporation is a private one formed to carry on a business.
CORPOREAL
Concerning material objects or property, rather than non-material things, such as ideas. A machine would be corporeal; the patent for it would be incorporeal.
CORPOREAL PROPERTY
That property which can be touched. For example: A window (glass) is corporeal. The view through the window is incorporeal.
CORPUS
A body; of people, laws, etc.
CORRECTION DEED
See: Rerecording.
CORRECTION LINES
See: Standard Parallels.
CORRELATION
The use of different appraisal methods to reach an estimate of value of a property. The methods must be weighed as to relative value in each specific appraisal.
CORRIDOR
(1) A hallway or passageway. (2) A strip of land used as a passageway, such as an inland country's outlet to the sea, or between heavily populated areas.
COSIGNER
See: Co-Maker.
COST
Technically, the original amount paid for anything. The term is generally used as a synonym for value or the total amount invested, including expenses after the original purchase.
COST APPROACH
An appraisal method, estimating the replacement cost of a structure, less depreciation, plus land value.
COST ESTIMATING
(1) In construction, the expenditure of building based on a detailed cost of materials to be used. (2) In appraisal the term is general, referring to replacement cost, but not limited to a specific method of arriving at said cost.
COST OF FUNDS INDEX (COFI)
See: COFI.
COST OF LIVING ESCALATION
See: Escalation Clause (2).
COST OF LIVING INDEX
A government indicator of the increase or decrease of living costs for the average person on a monthly basis. See also: Escalation Clause (2).
COST OF OCCUPANCY
Cost (usually monthly) of a business to occupy its property exclusive of any costs of doing business.
COST OF REMODELING
Expense of alterations to raise the value of a property, rather than to make repairs.
COST OF REPAIRS
Expenses to maintain the value of a property by restoring the worn- out or broken parts of the structure.
COST RECOVERY
See: Depreciation (2).
COST-PLUS CONTRACT
A building contract setting the builder's profit at a set percentage of actual cost of labor and materials.
COTENANCY
A general term covering both joint tenancy and tenancy in common.
COTTAGE
Originally, a house with no surrounding land belonging to it. Modernly, a small house, perhaps used as a summer home.
COULOMB
A measure of electricity equal to a one second electrical charge in a current having a constant flow of one ampere.
COUNSELOR (COUNSELLOR)
(1) A lawyer. (2) One designated as a real estate counselor by the American Society of Real Estate Counselors. The designation indicates an extremely high standard of knowledge and experience on the part of the conferee.
COUNSELOR OF REAL ESTATE (CRE)
A designation conferred by the Counselors of Real Estate, an affiliated association of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS. The designation is not just for those in the real estate business but includes lawyers, accountants, financial firms, government employees and educators.
COUNSELORS OF REAL ESTATE
An association affiliated with the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS. Its members provide counseling in various aspects of real estate. The association offers publications and courses in counseling and confers the designation of Counselor of Real Estate.
COUNTER FLASHING
Flashing (tar substance) used on chimneys at the roofline to prevent entry of moisture, and cover the metal sheet flashing.
COUNTER OFFER
An offer (instead of acceptance) in response to an offer. For example: A offers to buy B's house for X dollars. B, in response, offers to sell to A at a higher price. B's offer to A is a counter offer.
COUNTER-LETTER
In civil law (Louisiana), when a deed is given to a lender as security, an agreement to reconvey (counter-letter) upon payment of a certain amount is given by the lender.
COUNTY
A political division within a state, usually encompassing one or more cities or towns. There are exceptions such as New York City which contains more than one county. Louisiana uses the word parrish instead of county; New York uses both borough and county, as in Kings County (the borough of Brooklyn).
COUNTY MORTGAGE
A mortgage placed on property by the county to secure aid given to indigent persons. Generally paid upon sale of the property. Also called an indigent mortgage.
COUNTY RECORDS
Public recorded documents by which notice is given of changes of title, liens, and other matters affecting real estate.
COUNTY ROAD
(1) A road lying entirely in one county. (2) Any road or portion of a road under the jurisdiction and maintenance of the county. (3) Loosely, any road not a federal or state road.
COURSE
(1) The path or direction of a river. (2) Something designed so that it must be used by following a certain direction, such as a golf course or race course. (3) A continuous row or layer of wood, bricks, masonry, etc.
COURSES AND DISTANCES
Terminology used in surveying, meaning metes and bounds. See also: Metes and Bounds.
COURT
(1) A totally uncovered space, wholly or partly surrounded by walls or buildings. (2) A blind alley, short street, or short cul de sac. (3) A courtroom.
COURTESY TO BROKERS
Willingness of a seller to pay a commission to any broker supplying a suitable buyer; or the willingness of a listing broker to share the commission with any broker supplying a suitable buyer.
COVE
(1) An arched, rather than square angle, meeting of a ceiling and wall. (2) An inlet or small bay.
COVE MOLDING
A small, concave faced molding, used to cover a narrow gap or angle.
COVENANT
Generally, almost any written agreement. Most commonly in real estate, assurances set forth (expressed) in a deed by the grantor or implied by law. Example: Covenant against encumbrances, covenant of right to convey, etc.
COVENANT NOT TO COMPETE
A promise (covenant) usually by a seller of a business, not to operate a competitive business after the sale. The more specific the restriction (time limit, distance, etc.), the more easily it is enforceable.
COVENANT OF QUIET ENJOYMENT
Usually inserted in leases or conveyances whereby lessor or grantor promises that the tenant or grantee shall enjoy possession of the premises in peace and without disturbance caused by defective title.
COVENANTS RUNNING WITH THE LAND
See: Running With The Land.
COVENANTS, CONDITIONS, AND RESTRICTIONS
See: CC&R's.
CPA
See: Certified Public Accountant.
CPM
See: Certified Property Manager.
CRA
See: Community Reinvestment Act.
CRADLE
(1) A framework or support, built to shield or protect its contents. (2) The path prepared to catch a falling tree to prevent damage to the tree.
CRAMDOWN
A term used in chapter 13 (wage earner restructuring debt) bankruptcy. A secured loan is reduced when the loan balance exceeds the reasonable value of the collateral security. The amount above that value becomes unsecured. Used mainly for personal property loans but now starting to be used for mortgage loans. A portion of the mortgage, if it exceeds the value of the property, can become an unsecured loan.
CRAWL SPACE
A space between the ground and the first floor of a structure (usually a house). Repair of utilities under the house may be made by a person crawling through the shallow space.
CRB
See: Certified Real Estate Brokerage Manager.
CREATIVE FINANCING
A general term which encompasses any method of financing property going beyond traditional real estate lending.
CREDIT
(1) The financial worthiness of a borrower. The history of whether this borrower has met financial obligations on time in the past. (2) An accounting term designating money received or receivable, as opposed to debit which is money payed or payable.
CREDIT BUREAU
A company that compiles information on a person's credit history. Also called a Consumer Reporting Bureau.
CREDIT BUREAU SCORE
A number representing the credit worthiness of a potential borrower.
CREDIT ENHANCEMENT
The requirement of additional collateral security, such as mortgage insurance, to protect a lender against loss.
CREDIT HISTORY
The past and present debts of a potential borrower. It is used to see if the person pays obligations as agreed and whether any past defaults have led to judgments or bankruptcy.
CREDIT LIFE INSURANCE
See: Mortgage Life Insurance.
CREDIT LINE REVERSE MORTGAGE
A maximum amount is established as a line of credit. The borrower can write checks up to this amount. This loan allows repayment and reborrowing during the life of the loan, but does not require repayment until the loan ends. This occurs either at the borrower's sale of the property or the borrower's death. See also: Reverse Mortgage.
CREDIT REPORT
A report on the past ability of a loan applicant to pay installment payments. Several national and local companies make such reports.
CREDIT REPOSITORY
See: Credit bureau.
CREDITOR
One who is owed money.
CREDITOR'S COMPOSITION
An agreement by creditors to take a portion of a debt as satisfaction for the total due. Generally done to avoid a debtor having to declare bankruptcy.
CREDITOR'S POSITION
(1) The portion of the value of property which is mortgaged, rather than the equity. (2) The portion of the value of property upon which a first mortgage could be obtained.
CREEK
(1) An inlet, going deeper into land than a cove. (2) A stream which empties into a river or bay.
CRICKET
A small, convex roof, placed on a larger roof or surface, to promote drainage in areas of the surface which have barriers to said drainage.
CROFT
An obsolete term referring to a small farm or area to be farmed.
CROP
A specific harvest in a single growing season, such as the corn crop, apple crop, etc.
CROP ROTATION
The planting of crops such as peas and beans (leguminous plants), which add nitrogen to the soil, on an alternating basis with crops such as corn, wheat, etc., which take nitrogen from the soil.
CROPLAND
(1) Any land suited for farming (the growing of crops). (2) Land upon which crops are actually grown or growing.
CROSS CONNECTING ROAD
A road connecting two parallel roads, usually at a right angle.
CROSS SECTION
The surface exposed by cutting at a right angle to an axis (usually the longer axis) of an object.
CROSS-BRIDGING
Strengthening a structure by bracing cross members between the joists, thereby spreading the weight over a larger area.
CROWN MOLDING
A large molding used on a cornice or to cover a wide gap or angle.
CRS
See: Certified Residential Specialist.
CRUISE
A surveying report showing the amount and type of timber in a given area or stand.
CRV
See: Certificate of Reasonable Value.
CUBIC CONTENT
The number of cubic feet in a building, measured from the exterior surfaces of the exterior walls and roof, and the interior surface of an unfinished floor or six inches below the finished surface of the floor.
CUBIC FEET PER MINUTE
An air flow measure used to grade the efficiency of ventilating fans.
CUBIC FOOT
See: Cubic Measure.
CUBIC FOOT COST
The cost of construction of a structure, divided by the number of cubic feet of the structure. See: Cubic Content.
CUBIC FOOT METHOD
See: Comparative Method.
CUBIC FOOT PER SECOND
A flow of water of one cubic foot per second. Used as a measurement term in determining the flow of a river or stream.
CUBIC INCH
See: Cubic Measure.
CUBIC MEASURE
A system of measuring volume or space by using cubic units. One cubic inch is 1 inch long by 1 inch wide by 1 inch high; 1728 cubic inches equals 1 cubic foot; 27 cubic feet equals 1 cubic yard.
CUBIC YARD
See: Cubic Measure.
CUL DE SAC
A street or ally open at one end only. Modernly, a street in a subdivision, open at one end, and having a large, rounded, closed end to facilitate U turns.
CULTURA
A parcel of land which can be cultivated.
CULTURAL FEATURES
A term denoting man made changes to land.
CULVERT
A waterway or drainage ditch which crosses under a road.
CUPOLA
(1) A structure, usually domelike, atop a roof. (2) A type of foundry furnace for melting iron.
CURABLE DEPRECIATION
Repairs which an owner of real estate should make to retain a high value, but which have not been made.
CURABLE FUNCTIONAL OBSOLESCENCE
See: Functional Obso-lescence.
CURABLE PHYSICAL DETERIORATION
See: Physical Deterioration.
CURB CUTS
The part of a curb which lowers to street level to form the apron of a driveway.
CURB LINE
The line between the right of way for automobiles (road) and the right of way for pedestrians (sidewalk).
CURRENT ASSETS
An accounting term meaning cash or those things which can be readily converted to cash, such as short term accounts receivable.
CURRENT LIABILITIES
Short term debts.
CURTAIL SCHEDULE
The schedule of partial principal payments (both amounts and due dates) to reduce and retire an indebtedness.
CURTAIN WALL
An outside wall which lends no structural support to a building, but acts merely to enclose.
CURTESY
A common law interest of a husband in the property of his deceased wife. Abolished in most states.
CURTILAGE
The grounds and secondary buildings surrounding a house which are commonly used in connection with the everyday use of the house.
CURVILINEAR
Having boundaries of curved lines; may refer to architecture, streets, etc.
CUSTODIAN
(1) One who is entrusted with the care and keeping of real or personal property. See also: Custody. (2) A janitor.
CUSTODY
The care and keeping of property (real or personal). For example: An escrow agent has custody of documents and funds until closing.
CUSTOM BUILDER
One who builds for a specific owner, designing the building to suit said owner's need, rather than building and then looking for a buyer.
CUSTOMER
A buyer of goods or services.
CUT-OVER LAND
Land from which the original growth has been cut away by logging.
CUTS
In construction, the excavation of land into a terrace or terraces, to control flooding, locate a highway, building, or affect the grade for some other purpose.
CY PRES
As nearly as possible. A doctrine used to carry out the intent of the donor when a specific charitable gift fails. Example: Land is left in a will to the X Blood Bank. When the will is probated, X Blood Bank no longer exists. The land is given to the Red Cross.
CYCLICAL MOVEMENT
A term in economics describing the business cycle of the national economy, from good to bad to good again.