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  Subsidized second mortgage:

An alternative financing option for low- and moderate- income households that also includes a down payment and a first mortgage, with funds for the second mortgage provided by city, county, or state housing agencies, foundations, or nonprofit corporations. Payment on the second mortgage is often deferred, carries no or low interest rates, and part of the debt may be forgiven for each year the family remains in the home.


A drawing showing the legal boundaries of a property, it's fixtures, and any easements or encroachments.

Tenancy by entirety:

A type of joint ownership of a property available only to a husband and wife.

Tenancy in common:

A type of joint ownership in a property without right of survivorship.


A legal document establishing the right of ownership.

Title company:

A company that specializes in title searches and insuring title to property.

Title insurance:

Insurance to protect the lender (lender's policy) or the buyer (buyer's policy) against loss arising from disputes over ownership of a property.

Title search:

A check of the title records to ensure that the seller is the legal owner of the property and that there are no liens or other claims outstanding.

Transfer tax:

State or local tax payable when title passes from one owner to another.


A federal law that requires lenders to full disclose, in writing, the terms and conditions of a mortgage, including the APR and other charges.


The process of evaluating a loan application to determine the risk involved for the lender.


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