Real Estate Glossary

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Rate and Term Refinance: A refinance transaction which is not intended to put cash in the hand of the borrower. Instead, the new balance is calculated to cover the balance due on the current loan and any costs associated with obtaining the new mortgage. 

Rate Lock: A lender's commitment to a borrower that guarantees a specified interest rate for a specified period of time at a specific cost.

Ratification: The adoption or approval of an act performed on behalf of a person without previous authorization.

Real Estate Broker: A person licensed to negotiate and transact the sale of real estate. 

Real Estate Investment Trust: A special arrangement under Federal and State law whereby investors may pool funds for investments in real estate and mortgages and yet escape corporation taxes; requires one hundred persons or more.

Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act: A consumer protection law that requires lenders to give borrowers advance notice of closing costs.

Real Property: Refers to the right to own land and improvements. Commonly used interchangeably with Real Estate and Realty

Realtor: A real estate agent, broker or an associate who holds active membership in a local real estate board that is affiliated with the National Association of Realtors.

Reconveyance: The transfer of the title of land from one person to the immediately preceding owner. This instrument is commonly used in California when the performance or debt is satisfied under a deed of trust and the trustee conveys the title he has held back to the owner.

Recorder: The public official who keeps records of transactions that affect real property in the area.

Recording: The act of entering in the public records, the written record of title to real property, and essentially making it a public record.

Redemption: The buying back of one's property after it has been lost through foreclosure through payment of delinquent taxes after sale to the State.

Refinance Transaction: The process of paying off one loan by obtaining a new loan using the same property as security, usually done to secure better interest rates.

Registrar of Deeds: The public official who keeps records of transactions that affect real property in the area.

Remaining Balance: The outstanding balance of principal on a mortgage. The principal balance does not include interest or any other charges; the amount of principal that has not yet been repaid. 

Rent Loss Insurance: Insurance that protects a landlord against loss of rent or rental value due to fire or other casualty that renders the leased premises unavailable for use and as a result of which the tenant is excused from paying rent. 

Repayment Plan: An arrangement made to repay delinquent installments or advances. 

Replacement Reserve Fund: A fund set aside for replacement of common property in a condominium, PUD, or cooperative project -- particularly that which has a short life expectancy, such as carpeting, furniture, etc. 

Rescission of Contract: Annulling a contract by mutual consent from both parties as if there had not been a contract.

Restriction: Limitations on the use or occupancy of real estate contained in a deed or in local ordinances pertaining to land use.

Reverse Annuity Mortgage: A loan that enables older home owners to convert the equity they have in their homes into cash, usually in the form of monthly payments. A borrower does not qualify on the basis of income but on the value of his or her home. In addition, the loan does not have to be repaid until the borrower no longer occupies the property. 

Reversion: The right to future possession or enjoyment by the person or his heirs, creating the preceding estate. 

Reversionary Interest: A type of interest a person may have in lands or other property upon the termination of the preceding estate. 

Revolving Debt: Debt owned on an account that the borrower can repeatedly use and pay back without having to reapply every time credit is used. Credit cards are the most common type of revolving debt. 

Right of First Refusal: A provision in an agreement that requires the owner of a property to give another party the first opportunity to purchase or lease the property before he or she offers it for sale or lease to others. 

Right of Survivorship: Right to acquire the interest of a deceased joint owner. Distinguishing characteristic of a Joint Tenancy Deed. 

Right to Egress: The right to leave designated premises. 

Right to Ingress: The right to enter designated premises. 

Right of Way: A privilege operating as an easement upon land where the owner agrees to give another person the right to pass over his land.