Real Estate Dictionary



F.H.A. (FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION)
A federal agency which insures first mortgages, enabling lenders to loan a very high percentage of the sale price.
FACADE
The main face or front elevation of a building.
FACE
(1) The front or facade of a structure See also: Facade. (2) The positioning of a structure, [as to front (face) the ocean]. (3) To surface or cover the front or outer surface of an object. (4) The outside or main appearance of the surface of an object.
FACE BRICK
A treated brick, usually glossy and of even quality, made for use as an exterior finish.
FACE VALUE
The value of notes, mortgages, etc., as stated on the face of the instrument, and not considering any discounting.
FACED WALL
A masonry wall, using different materials as a facing and backing, but with facing and backing bonded as one unit for load-bearing.
FACILITATOR
See: Qualified Intermediary.
FACTOR
(1) One who buys or sells goods in his own name, but acting as an agent for another. (2) One who buys accounts receivable at a discount.
FACTORING
Purchasing accounts receivable from a business at a discount.
FAIR CASH VALUE
See: Market Value.
FAIR CREDIT REPORTING ACT
A federal law giving one the right to see his or her credit report so that errors may be corrected. A lender refusing credit based on a credit report must inform the buyer which company issued the report. The buyer may see the report without charge if refused credit, or for a charge if just curious.
FAIR MARKET VALUE
Price that probably would be negotiated between a willing seller and willing buyer in a reasonable time. Usually arrived at by comparable sales in the area.
FAIR RENTAL
See: Economic Rent.
FAIR VALUE
The setting of a reasonable value by a court or board, for the establishment of public utility rates.
FAIRWAY
(1) The deepest part of a river or bay, through which boats travel. (2) A passageway kept open in a harbor or bay for boats to enter or exit. (3) A portion of a golf course, bounded on its width by the rough and on its length by the tee and the green.
FALLOW
(1) Land tilled and prepared for planting, but not planted. A method of soil conservation. (2) Land left idle which would ordinarily be planted.
FALSE ADVERTISING
In most instances when in connection with real estate, newspaper classified advertising which misrepresents the property, price or terms. A broker may have his or her license suspended or revoked if the offense is prolonged or deliberately fraudulent.
FAMILY ROOM
A room used informally for recreation, usually built off the kitchen.
FAN WINDOW
See: Circlehead Window.
FANNIE MAE
See: FNMA.
FARM
(1) A large parcel of land devoted to raising crops. (2) Land used for producing dairy products (dairy farm) or raising certain fish or animals, such as a lobster farm, oyster farm, etc. (3) A geographical area in which a real estate salesperson concentrates his or her business efforts (farms).
FARMER HOME ADMINISTRATION (FMHA)
The federal agency which makes, participates in, and insures loans for rural housing and farms.
FASCIA
A flat, long finishing band or board, used at the outer edge of a cornice, or to conceal rafter ends.
FAST FOOD RESTAURANT
A limited menu restaurant, offering quick service, low prices, and usually over-the-counter service rather than table service.
FATHOM
A measure of depths used at sea, being six feet.
FDIC
See: Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
FEASIBILITY SURVEY
A study of an area before construction of a project, to determine the probable financial success of the project.
FEDERAL DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION (FDIC)
The federal corporation which insures against loss of deposits in banks and, since 1989, in savings associations.
FEDERAL DISCOUNT RATE
The interest rate charged to member banks borrowing from the federal reserve bank(s).
FEDERAL FAIR HOUSING LAW
Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act which forbids discrimination in the sale or rental of residential property because of race, color, sex, religion or national origin.
FEDERAL HOME LOAN BANK BOARD
The board which chartered and regulated federal savings and loan associations, as well as controlled the system of Federal Home Loan Banks. The Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA) transferred regulation and chartering of thrifts to the Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS). (See: Office of Thrift Supervision).
FEDERAL HOME LOAN BANK SYSTEM
See: Federal Home Loan Banks.
FEDERAL HOME LOAN BANKS
Banks created under the Federal Home Loan Bank Act of 1932, in order to keep a permanent supply of money available for home financing. The banks are controlled by the Federal Home Loan Bank Board. Savings and loans, insurance companies, and other similar companies making long term mortgage loans may become members of the Federal Home Loan Bank System, and thus may borrow from one of the regional banks throughout the country.
FEDERAL HOME LOAN MORTGAGE CORPORATION (THE MORTGAGE CORPORATION)
A semi-governmental purchaser of mortgages in the secondary market. The trading of mortgage securities (Participation Certificates) for mortgages in its guarantor program has been highly successful.
FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION
See: FHA.
FEDERAL NATIONAL MORTGAGE ASSOCIATION
See: FNMA.
FEDERAL RESERVE
The government banking agency that sets interest rates for borrowing among banks and regulates government monetary policy. The rates that banks pay for money will determine the rates they charge for loans.
FEDERAL REVENUE STAMPS
Also called IRS stamps. A transfer tax of $ .55 per $500, based on the sale price of real estate (less remaining loans). The tax ended as a federal tax and was taken up by most states with slight modifications in some areas. See also: Documentary Transfer Tax.
FEDERAL ROAD
See: Interstate Highway System.
FEDERAL SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION
A federally chartered institution for savings and home mortgages, under the regulation of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board.
FEDERAL SAVINGS AND LOAN INSURANCE CORPORATION (FSLIC)
A federal corporation which insured deposits of thrift (savings and loan) associations. The Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA) transferred all such insurance to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
FEDERAL TAX LIEN
A lien attaching to property for nonpayment of a federal tax (estate, income, etc.). A federal tax lien differs from other liens in that it is not automatically wiped out by foreclosing on a mortgage or trust deed recorded before the tax lien (except by judicial foreclosure).
FEDERALLY INSURED REVERSE MORTGAGE
A reverse mortgage guaranteed by the federal government; also called a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM).
FEE
(1) Modernly, and not in strict legal terms, synonymous with fee simple or "ownership". (2) A charge made by a landlord to a tenant, which is not refundable. For example: A cleaning deposit would be refunded if the tenant left the rented property reasonably clean. A cleaning fee would be a charge by the landlord for cleaning the rented property and would not be refunded regardless of the condition of the property.
FEE APPRAISER
An independent contractor, not an employee of the company requesting the appraisal.
FEE SIMPLE
An estate under which the owner is entitled to unrestricted powers to dispose of the property, and which can be left by will or inherited. Commonly, a synonym for ownership.
FEE SIMPLE ABSOLUTE
A term now used synonymously with fee simple.
FEE SIMPLE CONDITIONAL
See: Defeasible Title.
FEE SIMPLE DEFEASIBLE
See: Defeasible Title.
FEE TAIL
An estate of inheritance which specifies the descendants or classes or heirs of the devisee who may succeed to the said estate.
FELT
A fabric composed mainly of wool mixed with fur, hair, or synthetics, under heat and pressure.
FELT PAPER
A highly absorbent, porous paper, used with tar or asphalt as a roofing paper, or over studs as an insulation.
FEMA
See: Federal Emergency Management Agency.
FENCE
A barrier, usually to enclose one's property; may be made of wood, brick, wire, etc.
FENESTRATION
The decorative manner or plan of placing doors or windows in a structure.
FHA ESCAPE CLAUSE
A clause stating that the buyer (borrower) shall not be obligated to buy nor shall any deposit be lost if the appraisal is less than the agreed upon amount.
FHA MORTGAGE
A mortgage insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA).
FHA MORTGAGE INSURANCE
The protection that lenders receive in the event of foreclosure. The borrower pays the fee for the insurance.
FHLMC (FREDDIE MAC)
A federal agency purchasing first mortgages, both conventional and federally insured, from members of the Federal Reserve System, and the Federal Home Loan Bank System.
FIBER GLASS
Particles of glass spun into a form of insulation, or materials such as used in drapes.
FIBERBOARD
See: Insulation Board.
FICO (FAIR, ISAAC AND COMPANY, INC.) SCORE
A number which "scores" credit of a mortgage loan applicant or loan applicant for another purpose. The score is based on many factors, such as too much or too little credit, past delinquencies, bankruptcy and frequency of inquiries. There are many other factors. Lenders use the score to determine whether to make a loan and the score may also influence the interest rate charged. FAIR, ISAAC AND COMPANY, INC. also provides insurance scores and many other business services.
FICTITIOUS DEED OF TRUST
See: Fictitious Instrument.
FICTITIOUS DOCUMENT
A document containing general provisions but not regarding specific property. The fictitious document is recorded in all counties of a state. Whenever the same type of document is recorded regarding specific property, the provisions of the fictitious document are incorporated by reference, saving both the costs of printing, and recording extra pages.
FICTITIOUS INSTRUMENT
An instrument (usually a mortgage or deed of trust) which is recorded not on specific property but to be incorporated by reference into future mortgages or deeds of trust. This is done by reference to the recording information of the fictitious instrument in the instrument recorded against specific property. This shortens the latter instrument and thereby cuts costs of printing, paper, recording, etc. The fictitious instrument contains general language applicable to any specific property.
FICTITIOUS MORTGAGE
See: Fictitious Instrument.
FICTITIOUS NAME
Commonly refers to a company name in a business not incorporated. The owner files a certificate of fictitious name. For example: Joe Smith (real name); Joe's Garage, (fictitious name). Also called a D.B.A. (doing business as).
FIDELITY BOND
Insurance covering an employer for loss caused by dishonest acts of specific employees.
FIDUCIARY
One acting in a relationship of trust, regarding financial transactions.
FIELD TILE
A series of tiles placed at the base of the superstructure to retard seepage of ground waters through the foundation. See also: Disposal Field.
FILL
(1) To supply an area with additional material (fill) to raise or obtain a uniform grade level. (2) The materials used for fill such as dirt, gravel, etc.
FINAL DECREE
A decree completely deciding all pending matters before a court, and obviating the need for further litigation.
FINANCIAL CORPORATION
A general term encompassing companies dealing in finance, such as banks, savings and loan associations, insurance companies, and similar companies.
FINANCIAL STATEMENT
An accounting statement showing assets and liabilities of a person or company. Used generally for large loans or other instances when the credit report (history of payment of debts) in itself is not sufficient.
FINANCING COSTS
The cost of interest and other charges involved in borrowing money to build or purchase real estate.
FINANCING STATEMENT
A recorded instrument, taking the place of personal property liens in some states. Used instead of chattel mortgages, inventory liens, pledges, etc.
FINDER'S FEE
A fee paid to someone who finds a buyer or property for a broker, buyer, etc. The term is sometimes used to attempt to pay a commission to an unlicensed person. Generally, a finder's fee is considered a commission and may only be paid to one who holds a real estate license.
FINISH FLOOR
The flooring over the subfloor, usually of hardwood, tile, or other finish on which one may walk. In some modern construction where carpeting is installed by the builder, plywood is used as a finish floor.
FINISH HARDWARE
See: Hardware.
FIRE INSURANCE
Insurance against loss or damage by fire to specific property. May also include other coverage.
FIRE ROCK
See: Igneous Rock.
FIRE SPRINKLER SYSTEM
See: Sprinkler System.
FIRE STOP
A means of preventing fire or smoke from traveling through a structure by filling concealed air spaces with fire-resistive materials.
FIRE WALL
A wall to divide parts of a building, and prevent the spread of fire. Should rise from basement level to a minimum of three feet above roof level, and all openings through the wall should be protected by fireproof doors.
FIRE-RESISTIVE
Able to withstand specified temperatures for a certain time, such as a one hour wall. Not fireproof.
FIREBACK
See: Chimney Back.
FIREBRICK
A brick specially made of clay which can be exposed to extremely high temperatures without damage. Used in furnaces, fireplaces, and similar high temperature areas.
FIREPLACE
A square, rectangular, or arched opening usually in a wall at the base of a chimney, lined with stone or masonry, and used for an open fire within a structure. Modernly, a decorative, more than necessary, part of a home.
FIREPROOF CONSTRUCTION
Having all exposed and load-bearing members of a noncombustible material, and structural members which can be injured by fire (such as iron or steel) protected by noncombustible materials.
FIRM COMMITMENT
See: Commitment (2); Conditional Commitment.
FIRST BOTTOM
The flood plain of a river or stream.
FIRST MORTGAGE
A mortgage having priority over all other voluntary liens against certain property.
FIRST PAYMENT DEFAULT
Failure of a borrower to make the first payment on the loan. May be grounds to investigate whether proper procedures were used in making the loan.
FIRST REFUSAL RIGHT
A right, usually given by an owner to a lessee, which gives the lessee a first chance to buy the property if the owner decides to sell. The owner must have a legitimate offer which the lessee can match or refuse. If the lessee refuses, the property can then be sold to the offeror.
FIRST USER
A tax term signifying the one who builds or buys property and is the first one to put the buildings to use. Certain tax (depreciation) advantages are given to the first user. The term concerns only depreciable property (improvements) and prior use of the land only (farming) would not be considered.
FISBO
See: For Sale By Owner.
FISCAL YEAR
An accounting year, which may be the calendar year, or any other one year period. The United States budget is based on a fiscal year from July 1, to June 30.
FIXED ASSETS
Permanent assets, necessary for the operation of a business, such as buildings, heavy machinery, etc.
FIXED EXPENSES
Property expenses not effected by use or occupancy. Example: Property taxes would be fixed while maintenance would vary with use and occupancy.
FIXED INSTALLMENT
A payment, usually monthly, not subject to change.
FIXED LIABILITY
A liability that will not mature during a company's fiscal period, such as a 20-year mortgage.
FIXED MONTHLY LOAN ADVANCES
Payments of the same amount that are made to a borrower each month under a reverse mortgage.
FIXED RATE MORTGAGE
A mortgage having a rate of interest which remains the same for the life of the mortgage.
FIXED WINDOW
A window which has no moveable parts, such as a picture window.
FIXTURES
Personal property which is attached to real property, and is legally treated as real property while it is so attached. Fixtures, not specifically excepted from an accepted offer to purchase, pass with the real estate.
FLAGSTONE
A decorative, flat, slate-like stone, used in walkways and patios, and processed in a variety of colors.
FLANGE
A projecting border, edge, rim, etc., used as a means of attachment to another object, as a method of adding strength, stability, etc.
FLANK
The side of any structure, hill, etc.
FLASHING
Sheet metal or similar material, used at different points in a structure to prevent water seepage, such as around vent pipes, chimneys, etc.
FLAT
A building containing a single living unit on each floor, and sometimes referred to by the number of units, such as two flat, four flat. Flats are no longer built, having given way to duplexes, fourplexes, etc.
FLAT COST
The direct cost of labor and materials used in construction of a project.
FLAT LEASE
See: Straight Lease.
FLAT ROOF
A roof having an almost level surface, except for either being slightly convex, to allow drainage towards it edges, or slightly concave, allowing water to drain at the center of the roof.
FLEXIBLE CONDUIT
A conduit that can flex (bend) to reach from another line (gas, electric, etc.) to the point of intended use.
FLEXIBLE INTEREST RATE
See: Variable Interest Rate.
FLEXIBLE LOAN INSURANCE PLAN
See: Pledged Account Loan.
FLEXIBLE RATE MORTGAGE
See: Adjustable Mortgage Loans.
FLIGHT PATTERN
The path (pattern of lights) used by airplanes for approaching and departing from an airport.
FLIP
Flexible Loan Insurance Plan. See: Pledged Account Loan.
FLITCH BEAM
A beam formed by two or more timbers, cut lengthwise, called flitches, between any two of which is placed a metal plate for additional strength, and all pieces are bolted together.
FLOAT
Funds in collection. The amount of a check in the possession of one bank but drawn on another is the float.
FLOATING RATE
See: Variable Interest Rate.
FLOATING SLAB
A concrete slab foundation where the slab and supporting beams are poured separately. See: Monolithic Slab.
FLOOD
An overflowing of a body of water from its normal boundaries, so that land usually dry is covered with water. May be a regular occurrence (sometimes even desirable for farming) or a disaster, if severe.
FLOOD CERTIFICATION
The determination by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) whether flood insurance is required and the degree of risk. Flood zones are rated as to risk and the cost of flood insurance varies accordingly.
FLOOD INSURANCE
Insurance indemnifying against loss by flood damage. Required by lenders (usually banks) in areas designated (federally) as potential flood areas. The insurance is private but federally subsidized.
FLOOD PLAIN
The extent of the land adjoining a river, which, because of its level topography, would flood if the river overflowed its banks.
FLOOR
(1) The inside bottom or lowest horizontal surface of a room, on which one walks or stands. (2) The different levels (stories) in a building, such as main floor, second floor, etc.
FLOOR AREA RATIO
A term commonly used to indicate the allowable square footage of a building according to zoning requirements. The ratio is between the total floor area of the building and the lot or plot on which it is built. Example: a 50,000 square foot lot may have a maximum of 100,000 square feet of floor area. A ten story building, each story having 10,000 square feet of floor space, would be allowed. The floor area ratio would be two to one, expressed simply as 2.
FLOOR DRAINS
Sewer drains in the floor of a building, used where there may be a heavy accumulation of water, such as in a basement of a house, or where floors may be cleaned with a hose such as in an industrial building.
FLOOR FURNACE
A furnace placed directly below a floor, which has no ducts and heats only through a grill in the floor.
FLOOR HANGER
An iron, stirrup-like brace, used to support a floor joist.
FLOOR JOIST
A joist used to support flooring placed over it.
FLOOR LOAD
The live load in pounds per square foot, which a floor is capable of holding safely.
FLOOR LOAN
The lower of two amounts of a single take out loan. For example: A lender agrees to loan on an office building being constructed, in the amount of eighty percent of appraised value if the building is seventy-five percent occupied, but only seventy percent of appraised value if the building is less than seventy-five percent occupied. The lower amount is the floor loan.
FLOOR OF FOREST
The covering of the ground of a forest, composed of partially decomposed vegetation, twigs, etc. Also called duff.
FLOOR PLAN
The layout of a building or portion of a building (apartment, office, etc.) showing the size of the rooms and the purpose of each (bath, bedroom, etc.). A good floor plan should be very important to a builder, since it will be important to a buyer or tenant.
FLOOR TIME
A period during the working day when a specific salesperson is responsible for general inquiries (walk-in or telephone) regarding property in a brokerage office. This is generally established as a set, rotating number of hours per week for each salesperson. When a salesperson is "on the floor" he or she must be in the office or make arrangements with another salesperson to cover the floor during those hours.
FLOW TIDE
High tide. The highest tide under normal weather conditions, as determined by the phases of the moon.
FLOWAGE EASEMENT
Not an easement by agreement, but the common law servitude of land of a lower grade level to allow water from land of a higher level to flow across it.
FLUE
(1) The opening or passageway in a chimney through which smoke, gases, etc., pass from a building. (2) Any opening or passageway for the elimination of gases, fumes, etc.
FLUME
(1) A natural gorge or ravine, through which a stream flows. (2) An artificial channel, inclined as a chute, and used to hold running water on which logs are floated from one place to another.
FLUORESCENT LIGHTING
Tubular glass lights, the interior of which has a fluorescent coating. Light is produced by the action of a stream of electrons upon the coating.
FNMA (FANNIE MAE)
A private corporation dealing in the purchase of first mortgages, at discounts.
FNMA BUYDOWN
FNMA ( Federal National Mortgage Association) accepts loans containing a buy down provision on single family residential, owner occupied properties. A prepayment (points) will buy a lower rate of interest during the first one to five years of the loan. Restrictions apply as to the amount of the buydown and rise in payment amount as the loan progresses.
FOIA
See: Freedom Of Information Act.
FOOTING
A foot-like projection at the base of a foundation wall, column, pier, etc., used to secure, support, and help eliminate settling or shifting.
FOR SALE BY OWNER
An attempt to sell property without using an agent.
FORBEARANCE
The waiting for payment of a debt by a creditor after the debt becomes due.
FORCE MAJEURE (FRENCH)
A force which cannot be resisted. In other words, something beyond the control of the parties involved. Includes Acts of God (see which) and acts of man (riots, strikes, arson, etc.) Used primarily in insurance but may be extended to any type of performance contract, such as construction.
FORCED PRICE
The price paid at a forced sale.
FORCED SALE
A sale which is not the voluntary act of the owner, such as to satisfy a debt, whether of a mortgage, judgment, etc. The selling price under such a sale would not be considered market value.
FORCED VALUE
See: Forced Sale.
FORCED-AIR FURNACE
A furnace having a fan or blower which forces the warm air through the ducts, rather than having the air circulated by the action of gravity.
FORECLOSURE
A proceeding in or out of court, to extinguish all rights, title, and interest, of the owner(s) of property in order to sell the property to satisfy a lien against it.
FORECLOSURE SALE
A sale of property used as security for a debt, to satisfy said debt.
FOREIGN CORPORATION
A corporation incorporated in another state. In New York, for example, a Delaware corporation would be a foreign corporation. See also: Corporation; Domestic Corporation.
FORESHORE
The shore between the average line of the flow tide and the average line to the ebb tide.
FOREST
A large area of land, covered with a heavy growth of trees and underbrush.
FORFEITURE
The taking of an individual's property by a government, because the individual has committed a crime.
FORGERY
A false signature or material alteration with intent to defraud. The forged signature of the grantor will not pass title regardless of recording or lack of knowledge by the grantee or future grantees. Title insurance will insure against forgery. The word may extend beyond signatures (forged paintings, documents, etc.)
FORM CONTRACT
See: Formal Contract.
FORMAL CONTRACT
Any of three types of contracts. (1) Contracts under seal. (2) Contracts of record. (3) Negotiable instruments.
FORMICA
A synthetic material under a trade name. Mainly used for counter- tops in kitchens, bathrooms, etc. Other uses include paneling, facing of wallboards, etc., as a durable interior finish.
FORMS
(1) Restraints, such as plywood sheets, to control the shape of poured concrete until it hardens. (2) A general term meaning instruments which are not unique, but printed in quantity, usually with blank spaces to be filled in to identify specific facts.
FORWARD COMMITMENT
Provides the borrower with a locked-in loan rate. Used to allow owners of property to know their mortgage obligation before renting the property and builders to have the same knowledge before construction.
FOUNDATION
The part of a building which supports the superstructure, usually below ground level. See: Concrete Slab Foundation; Pier and Beam Foundation.
FOYER
The open area or hallway upon entering a building, such as in a theater or hotel; also found in many homes. See also: Lobby.
FRACTIONAL APPRAISAL
An appraisal of a portion of a property, such as the value of a leasehold interest, value of an improvement without land, etc.
FRACTIONAL INTEREST
See: Divided Interest.
FRACTIONAL PROPERTY
A part of a property considered separately from the whole property (usually for appraisal or insurance purposes).
FRACTIONAL RATE
See: Split Rate.
FRAME CONSTRUCTION
Type of construction in which the structural parts are of wood or are dependent on a wooden frame for support.
FRAME HOUSE
Commonly used to describe a wood sided house. See also: Wood Frame Construction.
FRAMING
The outer structural member of a building or part of a building, such as window framing, or the skeletal support of members of a building.
FRANCHISE
(1) A statutory right which could not be exercised in the absence of the statute, such as the statutes enabling persons to form a corporation. Since a corporation is created by the statute, it could not be formed except by the grant of the legislature. (2) A combination of individual ownership and central control. One may own a fast food restaurant, hotel, hardware store, etc., yet use the name of a national company. Each individual owner pays for the name use, advertising, and may be required to make certain purchases (napkins, buns, etc.) from the national company. The individual benefits from the name and advertising. The real estate brokerage business was slow to use the franchise method, but now has many companies operating in this manner.
FRAUD
A deception, intended to wrongfully obtain money or property from the reliance of another on the deceptive statements or acts, believing them to be true.
FREDDIE MAC
See: FHLMC.
FREE AND CLEAR
Real property against which there are no liens, especially voluntary liens (mortgages).
FREE RENT
An inducement for a tenant to lease space. The amount of time the tenant may occupy the property without paying rent is usually based on the supply and demand for space and the length of the lease.
FREE STANDING BUILDING
A building containing one business, rather than a row of stores or businesses with a common roof and side walls.
FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT
Law requiring the government to disclose certain information upon a proper request. One of the exemptions to the act is disclosure of geological and geophysical information, such as maps showing the location of oil wells.
FREEHOLD
An estate, at least of duration of a lifetime, or of fee.
FREEWAY
A highway with ramp entrances and exits only, all crossroads at a different grade level, and charging no tolls or fees.
FRENCH CURVE
A draftsman's tool used in drawing noncircular curves. Also called an irregular curve.
FREON
The gas added to a refrigerator or air conditioner, which produces cold.
FRESCO
A method of painting on a wall on wet plaster. The paint becomes part of the wall and remains much longer than if simply painted on a dry plaster wall.
FRIABLE
Easily reduced to powder or crumbled. Nonpliable.
FRONT
(1) The external portion (face) of a building, which usually contains the main entrance. See also: Facade. (2) That portion of land bordering on a river, ocean, street, etc.
FRONT ELEVATION
See: Elevation (2).
FRONT FOOT COST
A determination of the value of real property based on a value per foot as measured along the frontage of a parcel. Usually used with commercial property.
FRONT FOOTAGE
See: Frontage.
FRONTAGE
The linear measurement along the front of a parcel, that is, the portion facing a road, waterway, walkway, etc. that would be considered the most valuable measurement of the property.
FRONTAGE ROAD
See: Service Road.
FROSTLINE
The depth to which the soil freezes.
FRUCTUS INDUSTRIALES
Those things created by the labor (industry) of man rather than by nature alone. For example: a planted crop rather than an iron ore deposit. Important because Fructus Industriales is treated as personal property.See also: Emblements; Fructus Naturales.
FRUCTUS NATURALES
Produced by nature alone, such as trees (not planted by man), or minerals in the ground. Considered real property. See also: Emblements; Fructus Industriales.
FSBO
See: For Sale by Owner.
FSLIC
See: Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation.
FULL DISCLOSURE
In real estate: (1) revealing all the known facts which may affect the decision of a buyer or tenant. A broker must disclose known defects in the property for sale or lease. A builder must give to a potential buyer the facts of his new development (are there adequate school facilities?; sewer facilities?; an airport nearby?; etc.). (2) A broker cannot charge a commission to buyer and seller unless both know (disclosure) and agree.
FULLY AMORTIZING LOAN
A loan of equal, regular payments which cause the principal and interest to be completely paid by the due date.
FUNCTIONAL
The ability of anything to perform its intended use or purpose.
FUNCTIONAL OBSOLESCENCE
A type of depreciation (loss in value) to improvements because the design and/or materials are outdated. When economically feasible to correct, it is called "curable", when not "incurable".
FUNDS
Money available for a qualified purpose, such as loan funds for F.H.A. insured loans, conventional loan funds, etc.
FURLONG
A linear measure, one eighth of a mile, used in horse racing.
FURNACE
An enclosed heating device. Modernly, a box-shaped unit containing a burner, which is fed oil or gas through a pipe. The heat from the burning gas or oil is circulated, usually with the aid of a fan, through ducts to areas to be heated.
FURNITURE AND FIXTURES
An entry in an accounting statement, referring to those items considered depreciable, as business fixtures and furniture, rather than real property.
FURRING
Narrow strips of wood or metal which are applied to walls, floors, ceilings, etc., as a means of leveling the area before applying the surface boards or laths.
FUSE
A device to prevent the overloading of an electrical circuit, by containing a strip of metal which melts at relatively low heat and breaks the circuit. In modern construction, the fuse has been replaced by circuit breakers.
FUSE BOX
A metal box containing the main wiring and all electrical circuit connections, protected by fuses.
FUTURE ACQUIRED PROPERTY
Property acquired after a loan or sale. For example: A loan agreement may state that the loan is a lien on all property presently owned or which the borrower may acquire in the future. See also: After Acquired Property; After Acquired Title.
FUTURE ADVANCE CLAUSE
Also called an additional advance clause. A clause in a mortgage or deed of trust which allows the borrower to borrow additional sums at a future time, secured under the same instrument and by the same real property security. Contained in an open-end mortgage or deed of trust.
FUTURE INTEREST
A present interest, but only a future right to possession and enjoyment of the land, such as a remainder interest, reversionary interest, etc.