Real Estate Glossary

Hazard insurance:

Insurance coverage that provides coverage for physical damage to a property from fire, wind, vandalism or other hazards.



Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM):

A type of mortgage that enables older homeowners to convert the equity they have in their homes into cash, using a variety of payment options to address their specific financial needs. Unlike traditional home equity loans, 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. Sometimes called a reverse mortgage or a negative amortization mortgage.



Home equity line of credit:

A mortgage loan – usually in a subordinate position – that allows the borrower to obtain multiple advances of the loan proceeds up to an amount that represents a specified percentage of the borrower's equity in a property.



Home inspection:

A thorough inspection that evaluates the structural and mechanical condition of a particular property. A satisfactory home inspection is often included as a contingency by the purchaser. Contrast with appraisal.



Homeowners' association (HOA):

A nonprofit association that manages the common areas of a planned unit development (PUD) or condominium project. In a condominium project, it has no ownership interest in the common elements. In a PUD project, it usually holds title to the common elements.



Homeowners' association dues:

A monthly or quarterly fee paid to a homeowners' association to pay for operating expenses.



Homeowner's insurance:

An insurance policy that combines personal liability insurance and hazard insurance coverage for a dwelling and its contents required by lenders as a means of safeguarding the security for a loan.



Homeowner's warranty (HOW):

A type of insurance that covers repairs to specified parts of a house for a specific period of time. It may be provided by the builder or property seller as a condition of the sale; the costs of which are included in the purchase price.



Housing expense ratio:

The percentage of gross monthly income that goes toward paying housing expenses such as rent or a mortgage. If you earn $4,500 (gross) and your house expense is $1,500, you have a 33 percent housing ratio (1,500 is one third of 4,500).



HUD median income:

Median family income for a particular county or metropolitan statistical area (MSA), as estimated by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Used for mortgage qualification purposes.



HUD-1 statement:

A closing document that provides an itemized listing of the funds that are payable at closing. Items that appear on the statement include real estate commissions, loan fees, points, and initial escrow amounts. A separate number within a standardized numbering system represents each item on the statement. The totals at the bottom of the HUD-1 statement define the seller's net proceeds and the buyer's net payment at closing. The blank form for the statement is published by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The HUD-1 statement is also known as the "closing statement," "RESPA" or "settlement sheet."


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