Real estate glossary T-Z

Basic Terms Used for Mortgage & Real Estate Transactions

Terms: A – F ~ G – M ~ N – S ~ T – Z

Real estate and mortgage transactions may involve other terms. In the event you don’t understand some of these terms, ask for help from your RealtorĀ®, Lender or Attorney.

Click on the first letter of the term you want defined to jump to that alphabetical category.

T ~ U ~ V ~ W ~ X ~ Y ~ Z

Tax Lien

Lien for nonpayment of taxes

Tax Sale

The consequence when taxes are not paid for. The property is put on auction by the government for public sale.

Teaser Rate

A mortgage with a low starting interest rate normally used to attract prospective borrowers.

Tenancy for Years

The amount of time a lease is enacted for (8 months, 3 years, etc.).

Tenancy in Common

Two or more people sharing the same residency and share the same belief of survivorship. In this case, if one of the residents shall decease the major beneficiary of the deceased person will inherit the ownership of the residency.

Tenancy in Severalty

A single owner of the property.

Time Share

Usually used in vacation properties. Ownership of the property is usually by a group of people and only for a specified interval in the lease.


Evidence of ownership. Showing the owner of the property and that they are in lawful possession.

Title Insurance

A policy usually for the buyer and the lender. The insurance policy is created as protection from loss and damage caused by problems in the title.

Title Report

A document containing all information pertaining to the title’s condition. The information included on this document is: mortgages, liens, easements, covenants, restrictions, and other problems that may be seen.

Title Search

A search conducted to conclude the ownership of property.

Town House

Homes that are generally of the two story nature and attached side-by-side to one another. Commonly found in planned unit developments (PUDs).


Land that is subdivided for the use of a development or other needs.

Transfer Tax

After the sale of property taxes are taken out and divided between the state, county, city, and other government agencies.

Truth in Lending

Federal Regulation Z defines truth in lending.


A background check given to a future loaner based on the criteria of assets, credit, income, employment, etc. of a potential borrower.

Unencumbered Property

Real estate with a free and clear title.

Unimproved Property

Undeveloped land.

Unrecorded Deed

A transfer of title from one party to another without recording.

Vacation Home

Second home.

VA Loan (U.S. Veterans Administration)

Allows veterans to receive a loan without putting money down and is guaranteed by the U.S. Veterans Administration.

Variable Rate Mortgage

Adjustable Rate Mortgage

Verification of Deposit (VOD)

Verification of account balance and history. This information must be verified through the borrower’s bank.

Verification of Employment

Verification that a borrower is employed. The documents states the starting date, job title, salary, and probability of future employment.


The voluntary surrender of responsibility or privilege.

Warranty Deed

A deed to property containing a warranty of a clear marketable title.

Wraparound Mortgage

The addition of a new loan to the already existing loan.

Zero Lot Line

A group of homes where the individual unit is a separate lot but the homes are attached to another (town homes).


Areas in which are categorized as either residential, commercial, or agricultural. The zoning areas are usually monitored by the city or county.