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Mortgage and Real Estate Glossary

Real Estate Definitions and Terms: L

Offers a Mortgage and Real Estate glossary for real estate and mortgage terms and definitions for home buyers, home sellers, and real estate consumers. Find expanded definitions of important real estate and mortgage home loan terms.

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Please select the first letter of the mortgage or real estate word you are looking for and then scroll the listing below to find that word.

Definitions and Terms: L

Last Updated - The Last Update column on a quotes results table tells you when the information was last provided by the lender to our site. We always place new listings at the top of each table so that you, the borrower, may have immediate access to the most timely information. Times provided are all Eastern Standard Time.

lease - A written agreement between a property owner and a tenant that stipulates the payment and conditions under which the tenant may possess the real estate for a specified period of time.

Leasehold Estate - An estate for a fixed length of time, established when a landlord gives up possession of real estate to a tenant, giving the tenant an equitable interest in the property, as defined by lease terms.

Lease Option - A rental agreement indicating a tenant's option to purchase a property. Monthly payments consists not only of rent, but an overage that can be applied towards a down payment on an already established amount.

Lease Purchase - Assists low- to moderate-income homebuyers in purchasing a home by allowing them to lease a home with an option to buy; the rent payment is made up of the monthly rental payment plus an additional amount that is credited to an account for use as a down payment.

Lender - The bank, mortgage company, or mortgage broker offering the loan. Many institutions only "originate" loans and then resell the obligation to third parties.

Leverage - Using someone else's money for the purchase of property.

Liability Insurance - Insurance that protects property owners against claims that alleges negligence or inappropriate action that resulted in bodily injury or property damage to another party.

LIBOR - The London Interbank Offered Rate Index (LIBOR) is an average of the interest rates that major international banks charge each other to borrow U.S. dollars in the London money market. Like the U.S. treasury the CD indexes, LIBOR tends to move and adjust quite rapidly to changes in interest rates.

Lien - A legal claim by one party against the property of another as security for a debt. Must be paid off when property is sold. A mortgage or a first trust deed is a lien.

Life of Loan Cap - The maximum interest rate that can be charged during the life of the loan. Also called Lifetime Cap. This value is often expressed as an increment above the initial loan rate. For example, an adjustable rate loan with an initial rate of 7.25% and a 6% lifetime cap will never adjust above a rate of 13.25% (7.25+6.0).

Loan - The principal, or amount of total borrowed money, that is repaid with interest.

Loan Amount - The amount of money that you intend on borrowing from a financial institution for the purchase of your home. Subtracting the down payment from the purchase price of the home will provide you with the loan amount.

Loan Fraud - Purposely giving incorrect information on a loan application in order to better qualify for a loan; may result in civil liability or criminal penalties.

Loan Officer - An intermediary between lending institutions and borrowers, loan officers solicit loans, represent creditors to borrowers, and represent borrowers to creditors.

Loan Origination - What the process of obtaining new loans is called.

Loan Servicing - A service performed by a lender to protect a mortgage investment, including collecting monthly payments from borrowers and dealing with delinquencies.

Loan-To-Value Ratio - The relationship between the amount of the mortgage loan and the appraised value of the property expressed as a percentage. A LTV ratio of 90 means that a borrower is borrowing 90% of the value of the property and paying 10% as a down payment. For purchases, the value of the property is assumed to be the purchase price, for refinances the value is determined by an appraisal.

Lock noun - The period, expressed in days, during which a lender will guarantee a rate. Some lenders will lock rates at the time of application while others will allow the borrower to lock the rate after the application is taken. Request information from your lender regarding lock procedures.

Lock verb - The act of committing to a mortgage rate. This action, taken by a borrower some time between the application and the closing dates, is sometimes accompanied by a payment by the borrower to the lender.

Lock-in Clause - Clause in a loan agreement that states that the borrower cannot repay a loan prior to a specified date.

Loss Mitigation - Process to avoid foreclosure; the lender tries to help a borrower who has been unable to make loan payments and is in danger of defaulting on his or her loan



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