Real Estate Dictionary



G.I. LOAN
See: Veteran's Administration (V.A.) Loan.
GAA
See: General Accredited Appraiser.
GAAP
See: Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.
GABEL
Rent. A seldom used term.
GABLE
The exterior wall surface, triangular in shape, formed by the inclined edges of a ridged roof (gable roof).
GABLE ROOF
A ridged roof, having two sloping edges which, at the ends of the ridge, form a gable.
GAIN
Profit. Important for tax purposes when realized from the sale of a capital asset. See also: Capital Gain.
GALLERY
(1) A covered walkway, open on one side, running along an upper story of a building, either inside or outside. (2) The highest theater balcony, having the cheapest seats. (3) A building or portion of a building used for exhibits, such as an art gallery.
GALLON
A liquid measure of 231 cubic inches or 4 quarts. See also: Imperial Gallon.
GAMBREL ROOF
A ridged roof, each side having two slopes, the lower of which is more inclined.
GAP COMMITMENT
A commitment to loan the difference between the floor amount of a take out loan and the full amount. The commitment is issued to enable a construction lender to loan the full amount of a take out commitment, rather than only the floor amount. See also: Floor Loan; Take Out Loan.
GAP FINANCING
(1) Interim financing. (2) A loan between the floor amount and full amount of a take out loan. See: Gap Commitment.
GARAGE
A place to keep or repair motor vehicles; either a building adjacent or attached to a residence, or as a commercial enterprise.
GARBAGE DISPOSAL
A small tank with metal grinders, which is usually installed under the drain in a kitchen sink. The grinders pulverize discarded food into particles which may be washed into the sanitary sewer.
GARDEN
A small parcel of land used for growing fruits, vegetables, or flowers, which are usually not sold, but used by the grower.
GARDEN APARTMENTS
An apartment development consisting of two or more structures, surrounded by an abundance of lawns, plants, flowers, etc., giving a garden-like atmosphere.
GARN-ST. GERMAN ACT OF 1982
An act which, among other things, provides that a lender may not enforce a due-on-sale clause when the property passes by will to a relative of the decedent who occupies the property.
GARNISH
To bring garnishment proceedings.
GARNISHEE
The person against whom a garnishment is issued. The party holding funds of the debtor and not the debtor.
GARNISHMENT
A legal proceeding under which a person's money in control of another (such as salary) is taken for payment of a debt. The amount which may be taken is set by statute (usually as a percentage), and, in most states, a judgement is necessary before garnishment.
GARRET
See: Attic.
GAS STATION
See: Service Station.
GAZEBO
An open structure, usually in the garden of a "summer house" where one may sit and enjoy the view. Also called a belvedere.
GEM
See: Growing Equity Mortgage.
GENERAL ACCREDITED APPRAISER
A designation awarded by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS to a member who is a state certified General Appraiser and has the required additional experience and tested education.
GENERAL BENEFITS
In condemnation, benefits accruing to property not taken, but which benefits are caused by the taking.
GENERAL CONTRACTOR
One who contracts for the construction of an entire building or project, rather than for a portion of the work. The general contractor hires subcontractors, such as plumbing contractors, electrical contractors, etc., coordinates all work, and is responsible for payment to the said subcontractors.
GENERAL INDEX (G.I.)
A title insurance company term for the books used to find liens against individuals which may effect real property, but which are not recorded against the property being insured, such as liens against a buyer.
GENERAL LIEN
(1) A lien such as a tax lien or judgment lien which attaches to all property of the debtor rather than the lien of, for example, a trust deed, which attaches only to specific property. (2) The right of a creditor to hold, personal property of a debtor for payment of a debt not associated with the property being held. Must be done under an agreement since against general precepts of law.
GENERAL MORTGAGE
See: Blanket Mortgage.
GENERAL OVERHEAD COSTS
See: Indirect Construction Cost.
GENERAL PARTNER
A member of a partnership who has authority to bind the partnership and shares in the profits and losses. A partnership must have at least one general partner and may have more, as well as limited partners.
GENERAL PARTNERSHIP
A partnership made up of general partners, without special (limited) partners. See also: Limited Partnership; Partnership.
GENERAL PLAN
See: Master Play.
GENERAL PLAN RESTRICTIONS
Restrictions imposed on an entire subdivision, usually by the developer. Also called a declaration of restrictions.
GENERAL POWER
See: Power of Attorney (1).
GENERAL WARRANTY DEED
A conveyancing instrument under which the grantor assumes liability for defects of title. Not needed when title insurance is purchased.
GENERALLY ACCEPTED ACCOUNTING PRINCIPLES
Accounting methods approved by the accounting profession and required in audits and reporting.
GEODETIC SYSTEM (THE UNITED STATES COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY SYSTEM)
A network of bench marks (surveyor's marks), located by longitude and latitude, covering the entire country. Originally, this system was used to locate federally owned land, and has since been extended nation-wide.
GEORGIAN ARCHITECTURE
A colonial style of architecture dating back to the eighteenth century. Characterized by first floor windows extending to the ground, its exterior placements (windows, doors, etc.) are simple and well balanced, yet formal in appearance.
GEORGIAN COLONIAL ARCHITECTURE
A more formal and elaborate form of Georgian Architecture.
GERRYMANDER
To divide an area into districts, against the obvious natural divisions, in order to accomplish an unlawful purpose. For example: To divide a school district to keep out certain people for reasons of race or religion; to divide a political voting district as to give power to a political party.
GIFT
A voluntary transfer of property without valuable consideration.
GIFT CAUSA MORTIS
A gift made in contemplation of death. The gift is conditioned upon the death of the donor and may be revoked before the donor's death.
GIFT DEED
A deed for nominal consideration.
GIFT LETTER
A letter to HUD from the donor (giver) stating that a gift of money has been made to the buyer in order to purchase specific property. The relationship of the donor and donee is stated, as well as the amount of the gift.
GIFT TAX
A federal and sometimes a state tax on inter vivos transfers without consideration.
GINGERBREAD WORK
Use of ornamentation in architecture, especially residential, which adds to emotional appeal, rather than functional value.
GINNIE MAE
See: GNMA.
GIRDER
(1) One of the heavy beams supporting flooring joists. (2) A metal framing member of a series of heavy supports for a building, bridge, etc.
GIRT
A horizontal bracing member, running between columns or other vertical members to stiffen the framing.
GLASS
A usually transparent or translucent substance, formed by the fusion of some silica, such as sand. Glass is colored by the addition of metallic oxides, and comes in a great variety of shapes and sizes.
GLASS BLOCK
A building block of hollow glass, used as a decorative wall, but not usually a bearing wall.
GLASS-WOOL INSULATION
Insulation made in sheets from glass fibers, covered with water resistant or asphalt treated paper.
GLAZE
To finish with a glossy surface.
GLAZED BRICK
A brick having a glazed (glossy) surface.
GLUE LAMINATED BEAMS
Beams composed of layers of wood, pressed and glued together, and used to support roof rafters.
GNMA (GINNIE MAE)
Government National Mortgage Association. A federal association, working with F.H.A., which offers special assistance in obtaining mortgages, and purchases mortgages in a secondary capacity.
GNMA (GOVERNMENT NATIONAL MORTGAGE ASSOCIATION) OPTIONS
A method of purchasing GNMA securities through "puts" and "calls". A GNMA Call Option is the right to buy GNMA securities at a specific yield for a specified time. A Put Option is the right to sell GNMA securities at a specific yield for a specified time. The buyer pays for the option and may exercise it, not exercise it, or sell it.
GNMA ISSUER
A mortgage lender qualified to participate in the Ginnie Mae Mortgage Backed Securities Program.
GNMA PASS-THROUGH CERTIFICATES
Mortgage-backed securities insured by the Government National Mortgage Association (GNMA). (See: Mortgage-backed Securities).
GOOD FAITH
Something done with good intentions, without knowledge of fraudulent circumstances, or reason to inquire further.
GOOD FAITH ESTIMATE
An estimate of all closing fees including pre-paid and escrow items as well as lender charges.
GOOD WILL
A salable asset of a business, based on its reputation rather than its physical assets.
GORE
A small parcel of land, usually triangular in shape, resulting from the failure of a legal description to join 2 tracts. (Also called: Hiatus).
GOVERNMENT LOTS
Irregularly shaped parcels of land, usually fronting on water, which could not practically be divided into sections under government survey.
GOVERNMENT NATIONAL MORTGAGE ASSOCIATION
See: GNMA.
GOVERNMENT SURVEY
The survey from which our present system of townships, sections, etc., was developed.
GPM
See: Graduated Payment Mortgage.
GRACE PERIOD
A period of time past the due date for a payment (mortgage, insurance, etc.) during which time a payment may be made and not considered delinquent.
GRADE
The degree of the slope of land.
GRADE SEPARATION
A structure, such as a cloverleaf of a highway, enabling roads to intersect one over the other, obviating the need for a traffic light or stop sign.
GRADED LEASE
See: Step-Up Lease.
GRADED TAX
A property tax designed to promote local development by increasing the tax rate on land and decreasing it on improvements.
GRADIENT
The degree of the slope of land.
GRADUATED LEASE
A lease calling for a varying rental, usually based on periodic appraisal or simply the passage of time.
GRADUATED PAYMENT ADJUSTABLE MORTGAGE LOAN
A combination of a graduated payment mortgage and an adjustable mortgage. Monthly payments begin at less than the amount necessary to amortize the loan and increase over a maximum 10 year period. The payment increase is not predetermined but varies as the interest rate is adjusted based on the movement of a agreed upon index.
GRADUATED PAYMENT MORTGAGE
A mortgage or deed or trust calling for increasingly higher payments over the term of the loan. This allows the buyer low beginning payments. The payments then increase as (theoretically) the buyer's earnings increase. See also:G.E.M.
GRAIN
(1) The direction, size and arrangement of the fibers of wood, leather, etc. (2) Seeds from cereal plants, such as wheat, oats, corn, etc. (3) A small particle, such as a grain of sand. (4) A unit of weight equal to 1/7000th of a pound.
GRAIN ELEVATOR
(1) A structure for the processing and storage of grain. (2) Modern farm machinery used for loading and unloading grain.
GRAND LIST
The term used for the tax roll or assessment list in the New England states.
GRANDFATHER CLAUSE
The clause in a law permitting the continuation of a use, business, etc., which, when established, was permissible but, because of a change in the law, is now not permissible. See also: Nonconforming Use.
GRANT
To transfer an interest in real property; either the fee or a lesser interest, such as an easement.
GRANT DEED
One of the many types of deeds used to transfer real property. Contains warranties against prior conveyances or encumbrances. When title insurance is purchased, warranties in a deed are of little practical significance.
GRANTEE
One to whom a grant is made. Generally, the buyer.
GRANTOR
One who grants property or property rights.
GRANTOR-GRANTEE INDEX
The record of the passing of title to all the properties in a country as kept by the county recorder's office. Property is checked by tracing the names of the sellers and buyers (chain of title). Title companies usually have more efficient methods by keeping records according to property description, rather than people's names.
GRAPH
A diagram representing statistical data by the use of dots and lines to show a relationship among things.
GRAVEL
Loose rock about two millimeters in diameter, found in great quantity, and used for roadbeds, as a surface or under paving.
GRAVEL PIT
An excavation from which gravel is removed. See also:Borrow Pit.
GRAVEYARD
See: Cemetery.
GRAVITY FURNACE
A hot air furnace which circulates by the different weights of hot and cold air, rather than by a fan.
GREEN LUMBER
Unseasoned lumber, having a higher content of moisture than that of seasoned or air-dried lumber.
GREENBELT
A landscaped area surrounding a development to separate and protect it from a neighboring incompatible use, such as separating office buildings from an industrial park.
GRID
(1) A network of pipes (as for the distribution of water or gas). (2) A network of uniformly spaced horizontal lines, as on a map or chart, used for locating points by coordinates. (3) A chart used by insurance companies and lenders for rating property, risk of the borrower, neighbor-hood, etc.
GRIDIRON PATTERN (GRIDIRON PLAN)
A layout of streets in a subdivision or city which resembles a gridiron.
GROIN
(1) In architecture, the curved point at which arched ceilings or roofs meet or intersect each other. (2) A structure, usually of pilings, used to resist shifting of coastal sands.
GROSS
Total, with no allowances or deductions, such as gross acre, gross lease, gross income, gross sales, etc.
GROSS ACRE
An acre (43,560 sq. ft.). Distinguished from a net (usable) acre.
GROSS AREA
In building measurement, the outside dimensions determine the gross area, irrespective of the area inside actually usable or rentable.
GROSS EFFECTIVE INCOME
See: Adjusted Gross Income.
GROSS INCOME
The scheduled (total) income, either actual or estimated, derived from a business or property.
GROSS INCOME MULTIPLIER
A figure which, when multiplied by the annual gross income, will theoretically determine the market value. A general rule of thumb which varies with specific properties and areas.
GROSS LEASE
A lease which obligates the lessor to pay all or part of the expenses of the leased property, such as taxes, insurance, maintenance, utilities, etc.
GROSS NATIONAL PRODUCT (GNP)
The money value of all goods and services produced by a nation's economy for a given period of time.
GROSS PROFIT
The total profit before deductions. A general term which varies, depending upon accounting procedures.
GROSS RENT MULTIPLIER
The quotient of the sale price divided by the gross rent. Generally expressed as the monthly gross rent in a single family residential property and the yearly gross rent in multifamily units and commercial, office, or industrial property.
GROSS SALES
The total sales for a given time, before deductions for refunds, allowances, etc.
GROUND BEAM
A horizontal beam, very heavy and strong, installed at ground level to support and distribute the weight of that part of the building above the foundation.
GROUND FLOOR
See: Ground Level.
GROUND LEASE
A lease of vacant land, or land exclusive of any building on it. Usually a net lease.
GROUND LEVEL
Being at the level of the surrounding land, such as the ground floor of a building.
GROUND RENT
Rent paid for vacant land. If the property is improved, ground rent is that portion attributable to the land only.
GROUND WATER
Water in the subsoil or of a spring or shallow well.
GROUNDS
(1) The area surrounding a building which goes with and is of the same ownership as the building. The word would be used if the area were substantial, as opposed to a yard. (2) Strips of wood placed over the lath, to which molding is nailed.
GROUT
(1) Thin mortar used in masonry work to fill joints between bricks, blocks, tiles, etc. (2) A variety of plaster used to finish ceilings of superior quality.
GROWING CROP
A crop is considered "growing" from the time the seed is planted. It then stops being personal property and becomes part of the land passing with the fee unless specifically excepted.
GROWING EQUITY MORTGAGE (G.E.M.)
A fixed rate, graduated payment loan allowing low beginning payments and a shorter term because of higher payments as the loan progresses. Based on the theory of increasing income by the buyer and, therefore, ability to make higher future payments. When state law applies, usury laws in some states may not presently allow such loans when less than interest only payments create interest on interest.
GROYNE
See: Groin.
GUARANTEED MORTGAGE
See: Insured Mortgage.
GUARANTOR
One who makes a guaranty.
GUARANTY
Agreement to pay the debt or perform the obligation of another in the event the debt is not paid or obligation not performed. Differs from a surety agreement in that there must be a failure to pay or perform before the guaranty can be in effect.
GUARDIAN
One who is court appointed to manage the affairs of a minor or incompetent.
GUIDE MERIDIAN
See: Meridian.
GULLY EROSION
The formation of a gully by continued erosion through the soft topsoil (rill erosion) into the subsoil, where a more permanent channel is cut, separating areas and preventing the movement of animals, machinery, etc.
GUTTER
(1) A channel along the eaves to direct rainwater to a downspout. (2) The channel formed by the meeting of the street and curb, where rainwater runs to a sewer.
GYPSUM
An ingredient of plaster or cement; it is hydrated calcium sulphate.
GYPSUM BLOCKS
Building material used in non load-bearing walls and partitions, composed of a plaster type material.
GYPSUM PLASTER
A coarse plaster used as a basecoat, or for some exterior uses.
GYPSUM SHEATHING BOARDS
See: Gypsum Wallboard.
GYPSUM WALLBOARD
Commonly known as dry wall. A wallboard or gypsum (plaster) covered with a paper which can be painted or wallpapered.