Real Estate Professional

A person licensed to negotiate and transact the sale of real estate.

Appraisal

A professional opinion of the market value of a property.

Hazard Insurance Representative

A person who provides hazard insurance to protect the homeowner and the lender against physical damage to property. This insurance may cover fire, wind, vandalism, or other hazards.

Lender or Mortgagee

The person or institution that lends mortgage money using the property as security for payment of the debt.

Borrower or Mortgagor

A person who borrows money to buy a home, pledging to repay the money with interest and to maintain hazard insurance on the property.

Mortgage Insurer

An institution that insures the lender against loss in case the borrower does not repay the loan.

Title company

A company that specializes in insuring title to the property.

Title Insurance

Insurance to protect the lender (lender’s policy, paid normally by buyer) or the buyer (owners policy, paid normally by the seller) against loss arising from disputes over ownership of 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

Professional Home inspector

The property inspector who examines the home for structural defects, such as problems with the roof, wiring, plumbing, or heating and cooling systems. A termite inspector is usually required to evaluate the home for insect damage.

Purchase and Sales Agreement

A written contract signed by the buyer and the seller stating the terms and conditions under which a property will be sold.

Survey

A drawing showing legal boundaries of a property.

Commitment Letter

A formal offer by a lender stating the terms under which it agrees to loan money to a home buyer.

Closing Statement or HUD Statement

A legal form used at closing that gives an account of the funds received and paid at the closing, including the escrow deposits for taxes, hazard insurance, and mortgage insurance.