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Term Definition
U.S. Department. of Housing and Urban De
The federal agency overseeing the Federal Housing Administration and various other housing and community development programs.

Underwriting
The application of formal guidelines that provides specific perameters and standards for determining whether a loan should be approved or not.

Undivided Interest
The ownership right to use and possession of a property that is being shared among multiple co-owners, and no one co-owner having exclusive claim to any portion of the property.

Unencumbered Property
A property owned free and clear.

Unilateral Contract
An obligation accepted by one party contingent on the performance of a second party, but without obligating the second party to perform the specific action.

Unimproved Property
Land that is undeveloped, without construction, and has no site preparation (raw land).

Unrealized Gain
The amount of money of current market value minus cost for an asset that is not sold.

Unrecorded Deed
An instrument that transfers title from one party (grantor) to another party (grantee) without having been recorded, and no public notice of the change in ownership having been made.

Urban Renewal
The redevelopment of deteriorated sections of a city, often by demolition and new construction, can be privately funded, but is usually in association with government renewal programs.

Usufruct
The right to use someone else's property, or income from someone else's property.

Usury
Charging an interest rate exceeding the amount permitted by state law.

Utility Easement
Using another's property to lay water, gas, sewer and/or electric lines.

V.A. Loan
A home loan that is guaranteed by the U.S. Veterans Administration under the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944. It was later expanded to compensate the lender in the event of a default.

Valuation
The estimated worth or price of something. An appraisal is an act of valuation.

Variable Interest Rate
The amount of interest charged by the lender, that is allowed to vary over the maturity of a loan, and typically adjusted to an appopriate index.

Variable Rate Mortgage
Long-term loan applied to property, which the interest rate may be adjusted on a six month basis for the terms spelled out in the loan, and according to certain restrictions.

Vendee
A real estate purchaser.

Vendee's Lien
A lien against a property that is under a contract of sale to secure the deposit money paid by the buyer.

Vendor
A real estate seller.

Veneer
A thin layer of wood or brick exterior that covers a less attractive and/or less expensive surface.

Waiver
The voluntary surrender or renunciation of a claim, right or privilege.

Warehouse Fee
A closing-cost fee showing the lender's cost of holding a borrower's loan before they sell it on the secondary mortgage market.

Warranty Deed
A deed that has a covenant that; the grantor will protect the grantee against any and all claims. It usually contains covenants ensuring good title, freedom from liens and encumbrances, and quiet enjoyment.

Wholesale
To put a property under contract with the intention of reselling it quickly for a profit.

Wild Deed
A deed improperly recorded.

Without Recourse
Words used in endorsing a note to waive personal liability of the debtor in repayment of the note(repossession of the asset the loan is against is the only recourse).

Wraparound Mortgage
A loan arrangement where an existing loan is maintained and an additional loan is created that is equal to or greater than the existing loan.

Writ of Execution
A court order that authorizes and directs an officer of the court (usually a sheriff) to carry out the judgment or decree of the court.

Yield
The measurement of an investment's rate of return.

Zero Lot Line
A cluster housing development in which individual houses are placed on separately platted lots, but the lots are attached to each other.

Zoning
The legal mechanism for local governments to regulate the use of privately owned real estate to prevent conflicting land uses(ex: houses next to skyscraper) and promote more organized development.

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