LAND – The surface of the earth extending down to the center and upward to the sky, including all natural things thereon such as trees, crops, or water; plus the minerals below the surface and the air rights above.
LAND CONTRACT – Another name for an installment purchase contract, by which the buyer obtains equitable title (the right to use the property) while the seller retains legal title (recorded title)as security for payment of the balance of the purchase price.
LAND DESCRIPTION – A description of a particular piece of real property.
LAND LEASEBACK – A creative financing device often used with raw land which a developer wants to improve, in which the developer sells the land to an investor who leases the land back to the developer under a long-term net lease and subordinates his fee ownership to the lender providing development financing.
LAND, TENEMENTS AND HEREDITAMENTS – A feudal phrase used to describe all types of immovable realty including the land, buildings and all appurtenant rights thereto.
LAND TRUST – An association organized by common owners of real property, which holds title to the real property in the name of one or more trustees for the benefit of the owners, whose beneficial interests may be represented by trust certificates.
LANDLOCKED – Real property having no access to a public road or way.
LANDLORD – The lessor or the owner of leased premises. The landlord retains a reversion interest in the property so that when the lease ends the property will revert to the landlord.
LANDMARK – A stake, stream, cliff, monument or other object or feature which is used to fix or define land boundaries; also a prominent feature of a landscape or property that is the symbol for the place.
LANDSCAPING – Shrubs, bushes, trees and the like, on the grounds surrounding a structure.
LATERAL AND SUBJACENT SUPPORT – The support received by a parcel of real property from the land adjoining it is called lateral support. Subjacent support is that support which the surface of the earth receives from its underlying strata.
LAW DAY – The date an obligation becomes due; sometimes refers to the closing date.
LEASE – A lease is both a contract between lessor (landlord)and lessee (tenant) and a conveyance or demise of the premises by the lessor to the lessee. A lease is a contract in that item bodies the agreement between the parties.
LEASEHOLD – A less-than-freehold estate which a tenant possesses in real property.
LEGAL DESCRIPTION – A description which is complete enough that an independent surveyor could locate and identify a specific piece of real property.
LEGAL NOTICE – That notice which is either implied or required by law. Constructive notice under the recording laws is also referred to as legal notice.
LEGAL RATE OF INTEREST – The maximum interest rate permitted bylaw, with anything above that rate being usury.
LESSEE – The person to whom property is rented or leased; called a “tenant” in most residential leases.
LESSOR – The person who rents or leases property to another. In residential leasing, the lessor is often referred to as a landlord.
LESS-THAN-FREEHOLD ESTATE – An estate held by one who rents or leases property. This classification includes an estate for years, periodic tenancy, estate at will, and estate at sufferance.
LETTER OF CREDIT – An agreement or commitment by a bank(“issuer”) made at the request of a customer (“account party”)that the bank will honor drafts or other demands of payment from third parties (“beneficiaries”) upon compliance with the conditions specified in the letter of credit.
LETTER OF INTENT – An expression of intent to invest, develop or purchase without creating any firm legal obligation to do so.
LEVEL PAYMENT MORTGAGE – A mortgage which is scheduled to be repaid in equal periodic payments which include both principal and interest.
LEVERAGE – The use of borrowed funds to purchase investment property with the anticipation that the property acquired will increase in return so that the investor will realize a profit not only on his own investment, but also on the borrowed funds; the employment of a smaller investment to generate a larger rate of return through borrowing.
LICENSEE – A person who has a valid license. A real estate licensee can be a salesperson or a broker, active or inactive, an individual, a corporation, or a partnership.
LIEN – A charge or claim which one person (lienor) has upon the property of another (lienee) as security for a debt or obligation. Liens can be created by agreement of the parties(mortgage) or by operation of law (tax liens).
LIFE ESTATE – Any estate in real or personal property which is limited in duration to the life of its owner or the life of some other designated person.
LIMITED COMMON ELEMENTS – That special class of common elements in a condominium reserved for the use of a certain apartment(s) to the exclusion of other apartments.
LIMITED PARTNERSHIP – A partnership formed by two or more persons having as members one or more general partners and one or more limited partners.
LINE OF CREDIT – A maximum amount of money a bank will lend one of its more reliable and credit worthy customers without need for any formal loan submission.
LIQUIDATED DAMAGES – An amount predetermined by the parties to an agreement as the total amount of compensation an injured party should receive in the event the other party breaches a specified part of the contract.
LIQUIDITY – The ability to sell an asset and convert it into cash at a price close to its true value.
LIS PENDENS – A legal document recorded in the Bureau of Conveyances, which gives constructive notice that an action has been filed in either a state or federal court affecting a particular piece of property. “Lis Pendens” is a Latin term which means “action pending” and is in the nature of a quasi-lien.
LISTING – A written employment agreement between a property owner and a broker authorizing the broker to find a buyer or a tenant for a certain real property.
LITTORAL LAND – Land bordering on the shore of a sea or ocean and thus affected by the tide currents.
LOAN COMMITMENT – A commitment by a lender of the amount he will loan to a qualified borrower on a particular piece of real estate for a specified amount of time under specific terms.
LOAN-TO-VALUE RATIO – The ratio that the amount of the loan bears to the appraised value of the property or the sales price, whichever is lower.
LOCUS SIGILLI – Latin for “under seal”, used in the abbreviated form, “L.S.,” at the end of signature line in some formal legal documents; used instead of the actual seal.
LOSS PAYEE – The person designated on an insurance policy to be paid in case the insured property is damaged or destroyed.