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Glossary - T

Adding an extra period of time to the term of a contract.

To levy an assessment against, usually by government powers. Unpaid taxes usually form a special lien on property owned by the taxpayer, ahead of registered mortgages.

Tax deed
The instrument of conveyance when a property is sold by a government body to pay for arrears of taxes.

Tax lien
A claim registered against a property by a government authority for non-payment of assessed taxes.

Tax sale
Sale of property by a government body for non-payment of taxes, either by tender or auction.

Tenancy in common
Ownership of property in which several owners each own a stated portion of the property (a percentage). Each owner may deal with her portion of the property as she wishes (giving it away, mortgaging it, bequeathing it, etc.) and, upon her death, her share becomes part of her estate.

To die leaving a valid will: opposite meaning is to die interstate.

Testator (Testatrix)
The person who makes a will.

Time is of the essence
A standard statement in a contract which ensures that all dates and times of day noted in the contract are important and cannot be ignored by any of the parties without the consent of the others except in breach of the contract.

Time share
A form of joint ownership of property where numerous owners share title and enjoy use or occupation of the property according to a specific schedule.

The legal term for one's ownership interest in land.

Title insurance
A form of insurance contract which guarantees to indemnify an owner or mortgagee of property for damages suffered as a result of undiscovered title defects which arise later.

Title search
The act of examining in detail the public records relating to ownership of a parcel of land to ensure that the current owner has clear title, free of any liens, claims, mortgage or competing and adverse interests. Usually performed by a lawyer, qualified title searcher, or title insurance company on behalf of a proposed purchaser or mortgage.

Title theory
Jurisdictions in which ownership of land is divided into two interests--legal title and equitable title When an owner registers a mortgage in favor of a lender, legal title is transferred to the lender while the owner retains equitable (or beneficial ) title. Once the mortgage is paid out, legal title is transferred back to the owner.

Torrens system
Developed in Australia, a system of the registration of interests in land in which documents are closely regulated, monitored, and examined by the recording authority to ensure that they are correct and that title is transferred without flaw. Property may not be transferred if uncorrected title defects exist.

Trust deed
An instrument of conveyance of title to property wherein the transferee will be holding the title to the property on behalf on another person.

Town house
Also known as a row house, generally refers to a type of dwelling having two floors, with the living area and kitchen on the first floor, and the bedrooms on the second. Town houses share a common wall between units.

See eminent domain.

Tenancy by the entirety
A special kind of property ownership that's only for married couples. Both spouses have the right to enjoy the entire property, and when one spouse dies, the surviving spouse gets title to the property (called a right of survivorship). It is similar to joint tenancy, but it is available in only about half the states.

Anyone, including a corporation, who rents real property, with or without a house or structure, from the owner (called the landlord). The tenant may also be called the "lessee.".

Tenants in common
See tenancy in common.

Everything that may be occupied under a lease by a tenant.

The actual life of a mortgage, at the end of which the mortgage becomes due and payable unless the lender renews the mortgage.

Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board (TALCB)
A regulatory agency of the State of Texas, the TALCB was created in 1991 to license, certify and regulate real estate appraisers in Texas under state and federal laws. It superseded the Texas Real Estate Appraiser Certification Committee of the Texas Real Estate Commission.

Texas Deceptive Trade Practices - Consumer Protection Act
Makes it illegal for false, misleading, or deceptive acts or practices in the advertising, offering for sale, selling, or leasing of any real or personal property. The Act provides for civil penalties and in some cases, for mandatory triple damages and attorney fees for the aggrieved party. Also see Deceptive Trade Practices Act.

Texas Housing Agency (THA)
Created in 1979, the THA issues tax exempt mortgage revenue bonds. The funds may be used to purchase existing mortgages from lending institutions, to purchase new mortgage loans, or to make direct loans to qualified housing sponsors who are recommended by a lending institution. The agency does not actually originate mortgages, but issues commitments to lenders to purchase mortgages that meet all the agency's requirements. This is known as a forward commitment program.

Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission (TNRCC)
The TNRCC is the lead environmental agency for The State of Texas. Its mission is to protect the state's human and natural resources consistent with sustainable economic development. Goals include clean air, clean water, and the safe management of waste. The TNRCC is responsible for the general supervision and oversight of water districts and utilities, including the processing of petitions to create a district and applications to approve a utility service area. In addition, the agency maintains approval authority over many utility matters including the review of most district bond issues to assure the engineering and economic feasibility of projects, as well as standby fees, impact fees, fire plans, and other district matters plus the rates charged by privately-owned and member-owned utilities.

Texas Real Estate License Act (TRELA)
The law which established the Texas Real Estate Commission and governs the licensure and lawful behavior of Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons. The Texas Real Estate License Act may be amended by the State Legislature, as it deems necessary.

Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC)
The state regulatory agency responsible for the education and licensing of Real Estate Brokers, Inspectors and Salespersons. TREC also provides enforcement of the Texas Real Estate License Act, the Rules of the of the Real Estate Commission, the Texas Timeshare Act and the Residential Service Company Act. The mission of the Texas Real Estate Commission is to assist and protect consumers of real estate services, and foster economic growth in Texas. Through its programs of education, licensing and industry regulation, the Commission ensures the availability of capable and honest real estate service providers.

Texas Veterans Home Improvement Program
This program assists Texas veterans in the repair and improvement of their principle residence by providing low interest home improvement loans up to $15,000.

Texas Veterans Housing Assistance Program (VHAP)
Established by a constitutional amendment in 1984, the VHAP assists Texas veterans in the purchase of a principal residence.

Texas Veterans Land Program
Established by state in 1949 to assist Texas veterans to buy land with a small down payment and with long term mortgages with low interest rates.

An arrangement under which a purchaser receives an interest in real property and the right to use an accommodation or amenities, or both, for a specified period and on a recurring basis. Used primarily for selling vacation properties.

Title company
A company that provides title insurance policies. In Texas title companies also act as escrow agents, conduct title searches and hold closings.

Title theory state
The system in which the lender has legal title to the mortgaged property and the borrower has equitable title. Texas is not a title theory state. Contrast with lien theory state.

See Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission.

Transaction fee
A fee which may be charged each time you draw on a home equity credit line.

Acronym - Texas Real Estate Commission.

Acronym - Texas Real Estate License Act.

Acronym - Texas Real Estate Research Center, now renamed Real Estate Center.

Triple net lease
See net lease.

One who as agent for others handles money or holds title to their land.

The obliged for a cooperative share loan, who is both a stockholder in a cooperative corporation and a tenant of the unit under a proprietary lease or occupancy agreement.

Third-party origination
A process by which a lender uses another party to completely or partially originate, process, underwrite, close, fund, or package the mortgages it plans to deliver to the secondary mortgage market. See mortgage broker.

Total expense ratio
Total obligations as a percentage of gross monthly income. The total expense ratio includes monthly housing expenses plus other monthly debts.

Trade equity
Equity that results from a property purchaser giving his or her existing property (or an asset other than real estate) as trade as all or part of the down payment for the property that is being purchased.

Transfer of ownership
Any means by which the ownership of a property changes hands. Lenders consider all of the following situations to be a transfer of ownership: the purchase of a property "subject to" the mortgage, the assumption of the mortgage debt by the property purchaser, and any exchange of possession of the property under a land sales contract or any other land trust device. In cases in which an inter vivos revocable trust is the borrower, lenders also consider any transfer of a beneficial interest in the trust to be a transfer of ownership.

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

Treasury index
An index that is used to determine interest rate changes for certain adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) plans. It is based on the results of auctions that the U.S. Treasury holds for its Treasury bills and securities or is derived from the U.S. Treasury's daily yield curve, which is based on the closing market bid yields on actively traded Treasury securities in the over-the-counter market. See adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM).

Two- to four-family property
A property that consists of a structure that provides living space (dwelling units) for two to four families, although ownership of the structure is evidenced by a single deed.

Takeout Mortgage
A permanent mortgage, obtained by pre-arrangement between a builder and a financial institution, to repay the interim mortgagee at the completion of construction.

Third Party Organization
A process by which a lender uses another party to completely or partially originate, process, underwrite, close, fund, or package the mortgages it plans to deliver to the secondary mortgage market.

A federal law that requires lenders to fully disclose, in writing, the terms and conditions of a mortgage, including the annual percentage rate (APR) and other charges.

Two to four-family property
A property that consists of a structure that provides living space (dwelling units) for two to four families, although ownership of the structure is evidenced by a single deed.

Two-Step Mortgage
An adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) that has one interest rate for the first five or seven years of its mortgage term and a different interest rate for the remainder of the amortization term.


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