Balance sheet A financial statement that shows assets, liabilities, and net worth as of a specific date.
Balloon mortgage A mortgage that has level monthly payments that will amortize it over a stated term but that provides for a lump sum payment to be due at the end of an earlier specified term.
Balloon payment The final lump sum payment that is made at the maturity date of a balloon mortgage.
Bankrupt A person, firm, or corporation that, through a court proceeding, is relieved from the payment of all debts after the surrender of all assets to a court-appointed trustee.
Bankruptcy A proceeding in a federal court in which a debtor who owes more than his or her assets can relieve the debts by transferring his or her assets to a trustee.
Basis point A basis point is 1/100th of a percentage point. For example, a fee calculated as 50 basis points of a loan amount of $100,000 would be 0.50% or $500.
Before-tax income Income before taxes are deducted.
Beneficiary The person designated to receive the income from a trust, estate, or a deed of trust.
Binder A preliminary agreement, secured by the payment of an earnest money deposit, under which a buyer offers to purchase real estate.
Biweekly payment mortgage A mortgage that requires payments to reduce the debt every two weeks (instead of the standard monthly payment schedule). The 26 (or possibly 27) biweekly payments are each equal to one-half of the monthly payment that would be required if the loan were a standard 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, and they are usually drafted from the borrower's bank account. The result for the borrower is a substantial savings in interest.
Blanket mortgage The mortgage that is secured by a cooperative project, as opposed to the share loans on individual units within the project.
Bond An interest-bearing certificate of debt with a maturity date. An obligation of a government or business corporation. A real estate bond is a written obligation usually secured by a mortgage or a deed of trust.
Breach A violation of any legal obligation.
Bridge loan A form of second trust that is collateralized by the borrower's present home (which is usually for sale) in a manner that allows the proceeds to be used for closing on a new house before the present home is sold. Also known as "swing loan."
Broker (real estate): A licensed real estate professional who, typically, represents the seller of a property. A broker's duties might include determining market values, advertising properties for sale, showing properties to prospective buyers, and advising clients with regard to offers and related matters.
Buydown mortgage A temporary buydown is a mortgage on which an initial lump sum payment is made by any party to reduce a borrower's monthly payments during the first few years of a mortgage. A permanent buydown reduces the interest rate over the entire life of a mortgage
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