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10 Real Estate Terms You Should Know

For those who don’t work in the real estate industry, some of the terms used can be confusing, especially for first-time home buyers. Here’s a list of the 10 most searched real estate terms.

1. Amortization — Repayment of a mortgage over the loan term through monthly installments of principal and interest.

2. Closing Costs — Fees associated with the purchase of a home that are due at the end of the sales transaction.

3. Comps — Homes in a given area that have sold within the past several months that a real estate agent uses to determine a home’s value.

4. Contingencies — Conditions written into a home purchase contract that protect the buyer should issues arise

5. Debt-to-Income Ratio (DTI) — A ratio that compares a home buyer’s expenses to gross income.

6. Earnest Money — A security deposit made by the buyer to assure the seller of the buyer’s intent to purchase.

7. Equity — A percentage of the home’s value owned by the homeowner.

8. In Escrow — A period of time (typically 30 days or more) after a buyer has made an offer on a home and a seller has accepted.

9. Pre-Approval — A thorough assessment of a borrower’s income, assets, and other data to determine a loan amount they would qualify for.

10. Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) — A monthly cost for buyers who put down less than 20%, which insures the lender in case of a mortgage default.


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