Mortgage Glossary (all those fancy words we should know)

Registry System: A condensed history of the title to a parcel of land. The abstract consists of a synopsis of every recorded instrument affecting the title to that land arranged in chronological order of recording.

Mortgage payments which are made every 2 weeks for a total of 26 payments per year. Not to be confused with semi-monthly mortgage payments. Read Article for more information.

The actual number of years it will take to pay back your mortgage loan. In Canada the amortization does not generally exceed 25 years.

A transaction between unrelated entities where a willing seller (the seller is not compelled to sell) transacts with a willing buyer (the buyer is not compelled to buy).

Allows the buyer to take over the seller's mortgage on the property.

An estimate of the value of the property, conducted for the purpose of mortgage lending by a certified appraiser. This appraisal is not to be confused with a building inspection.

The buyer's cash payment toward the property. The difference between the purchase price and the amount of the mortgage loan.

The difference between the price for which a property could be sold less the total debt registered against the property.

This is the actual interest rate paid on a loan or mortgage. In Canada, mortgages typically have a higher effective interest rate because of the fact that interest rates are compounded semi-annually or twice per year.

The first mortgage in the mortgage agreement that is considered to be in first place and will have first claim on assets in the event of default.

A mortgage in which the rate of interest has been fixed for a specific period of time. This specific period of time is generally known as the term. 

The percentage of gross annual income required to cover payments associated with housing. Payments include mortgage principal, interest, property taxes and sometimes include secondary financing, heating, condominium fees or pad rent.

A mortgage that exceeds 75% of the home's appraised value or purchase price, whichever is lower. These mortgages must be insured for payment.

The value charged by the lender for the use of the lender's money. Expressed as a percentage.

The end of the term, at which time you can pay off the mortgage or renew it.

The party who advances the funds for a mortgage loan. The lender.

Applies to high-ratio mortgages. It protects the lender against loss if the borrower is unable to repay the mortgage.

Pays off the mortgage if the borrower dies.

One who gives a mortgage as security for a loan. The borrower.

An interest rate which does not necessarily correspond to the effective interest rate. In Canada, these two rates do not correspond.

A mortgage option that enables borrowers to take their current mortgage with them to another property, without penalty.

The amount borrowed or still owing on a mortgage loan. Interest is paid on the principal amount.

Paying off the existing mortgage and arranging a new one or re-negotiating the terms and conditions of an existing mortgage.

Re-negotiation of a mortgage loan at the end of a term for a new term.

Additional financing. Usually has a shorter term and higher interest rate than the first mortgage.

The length of time the interest rate is fixed. It also indicates when the principal balance becomes due and payable to the lender.

A mortgage with fixed payments, but fluctuates with interest rates. The changing interest rate determines how much of the payment goes towards the principal.

A mortgage that locks you into a specific payment schedule. A penalty usually applies if you repay the loan in full before the end of a closed term.

The number of times per year in which the interest rate is compounded. In Canada, mortgages are generally compounded semi-annual, which is twice per year.

A common payment among owners which is allocated to pay expenses associated with the development.

A mortgage loan issued for up to 80% of the property's appraised value or purchase price, whichever is less.

A fee paid to the municipal and/or provincial government for the transferring of property from seller to buyer.

The ratio of the loan to the appraised value or purchase price of the property, whichever is lower.

Allows partial or full payment of the principal at any time, without penalty.

The amount of principal which is still outstanding at the end of the term.

Qualifies you for a mortgage before you start shopping. You know exactly how much you can spend and are free to make a "firm" offer when you find the right home.

Voluntary payments in addition to regular mortgage payments.

Mortgage payments which are made on the 1st and 15th of the month, or twice per month, 24 payments per year. Not to be confused with bi-weekly mortgage payments (26 payments per year). 

The percentage of gross annual income required to cover payments associated with housing and all other debts and obligations, such as car loans and credit cards.

Legal ownership in a property.

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