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Real Estate and Mortgage Terms Glossary

If you need a more in-depth understanding of a particular term, or have additional questions on any of these definitions, please contact us directly and we'll be happy to assist you.

Glossary Index

A | B | C | D | E | F | G-H | I-K | L | M | N | O | P-Q | R | S | T | U-Z


Terms starting with Letter R

RADON

A radioactive gas produced by the natural decay of other radioactive substances, which is suspected to be a cause of cancer. See Radon Disclosure.

RAFTER

A structural element of the roof, sloping from the peak to the outer walls.

RANCH HOUSE

An architectural style typified by a single-story, low-roof construction. Popular in the western U.S.

RATE LOCK

A guarantee from a lender of a specific interest rate for a period of time. See Locking Interest Rates.

RAW LAND

Any land which has not been developed.

REAL ESTATE

A piece of land and any improvements or fixtures located on that land.

REAL ESTATE AGENT

A licensed professional who facilitates the buying and selling of real estate.

REAL ESTATE SETTLEMENT PROCEDURES ACT (RESPA)

A federal law requiring lenders to give full disclosure of closing costs to borrowers.

REAL PROPERTY

Land, improvements and appurtenances, and the interest and benefits thereof. See Real Property.

REALTOR®

A real estate agent or broker who is a member of the National Association of Realtors.

RECEPTACLE

An electrical outlet to plug into.

RECORDER

A local government employee whose role it is to keep records of all real estate transactions within the jurisdiction.

RECORDING

The filing of a real estate transaction with the appropriate government agent (normally the Recorder of Deeds Office). A real estate transaction is considered final when it is recorded. See Title Insurance.

REDEMPTION

The mortgagor's right to pay off the mortgage loan balance to stop a foreclosure sale.

REDLINING

Discriminatory financing by a lending institution; Not lending in certain neighborhoods.

REFINANCE TRANSACTION

A new loan to pay off an existing loan. Typically to gain a lower interest rate or convert equity into cash.

REGISTER

Where air from a furnace or air conditioning system enters the room.

REGULATION Z

The Truth-in-lending portion of the Consumer Credit Protection Act of 1968. It requires complete disclosure of the total costs involved in most credit activities.

RELOCATION SERVICE

Any company or agency that assists corporate employees in relocating from one place to another. Services may include hiring and coordinating real estate agents, moving companies, utilities etc.

REMAINING BALANCE

The amount of principal, interest and other costs that has not yet been repaid.

REMAINING TERM

The amount of time remaining on the original amortization schedule.

REMODEL

An activity designed to improve the value or desirability of a property through rebuilding, refurbishing, redecorating or adding on to it.

REPAYMENT PLAN

A plan to repay delinquent payments, agreed upon between a lender and borrower, in an effort to avoid foreclosure.

REPLACEMENT RESERVE FUND

An account, or fund, setup for the replacement of short life items, such as carpeting, in the common areas of a cooperative property.

RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY

A piece of property whose highest and best use is the maintenance of a residence.

REVERSE ANNUITY MORTGAGE

A mortgage that secures periodic payments to elderly persons who have borrowed on the equity in their homes. The mortgage must be repaid when the property is sold or when the owner dies.

REVOLVING DEBT

A type of credit that allows the borrower/customer to make charges against a predetermined line of credit. The customer then pays monthly installments on the amount borrowed, plus interest.

RIDGE BOARD

The structural member of a roof where the rafters join at the top.

RIGHT OF FIRST REFUSAL

an agreement giving a person the first opportunity to buy or lease a property before the owner offers it for sale to others.

RIGHT OF SURVIVORSHIP

In joint tenancy, the right of survivors to acquire the interest of a deceased joint tenant.

ROOF PITCH

The degree of slope in a roof.

RURAL

An area outside of an established urban area or metropolitan district.

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Page Authored by Benjamin Dona of Gulf Coast Associates, Realtors