Dictionary H


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habendum clause
The “to have and to hold” clause that defines the quantity of the estate granted in the deed.
Also called a powder room, a half-bath contains a toilet and a sink but no bathtub or shower stall.
handyman’s special
A house in fixer-upper condition.
A material made from wood fibers that is designed to simulate wood.
Wood that comes from deciduous trees such as oak, walnut, and maple; typically used for fine interior finishes.
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hazard insurance
Also known as homeowner’s insurance or fire insurance, hazard insurance covers physical risks such as fire and wind damage. Lenders usually require coverage for at least the replacement value of the home.
head jamb
The top horizontal member in a door or window frame.
A crossbeam above a window or door.
heat anticipator
A component of a mechanical thermostat that shuts off the furnace or boiler just before the set temperature is reached to prevent overheating.
heat pump
An electric cooling and heating system.
The equivalent of 2.471 acres.
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A gap between two parcels of land that is not included in the legal description of either property.
high density
The concentration of housing units in a specific area or on a specific property.
Any building taller than six stories.
hip roof
A pitched roof with sloping sides.
historic preservation
The physical rehabilitation of a historic home or building, and the movement of the same name begun in the 1960s in the United States to preserve and protect landmarks and urban neighborhoods.
historic structure
A home or building listed in the National Register of Historic Places and certified as historic by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior.
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hollow-core door
A door with a hollow interior.
home equity conversion mortgage
Loans made to older owners who want to convert equity into money. Because borrowers are qualified on the basis of the value of their home, the loan is not the same as a home equity loan. Also known as reverse mortgages.
home equity line of credit
An open-ended line of credit based on a homeowner’s accumulated equity. Most loan amounts are limited to 75 to 85 percent of home’s appraised value; withdrawals can be made at any time within the credit line’s guidelines.
home equity loan
A loan that allows owners to borrow against the equity in their homes.
home inspection
An examination of a home’s construction, condition, and internal systems by an inspector or contractor prior to purchase.
home inspector
A professional who evaluates the structural soundness and operating systems of a residence.
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home price
The price agreed upon by a buyer and seller, usually based on an appraisal of the house’s market value. If there’s a difference between price and appraised value,lenders will base their loan on the lower amount.
home rule
The power of a local government to adopt its own land-use regulations.
home warranty
A type of insurance that covers repairs to certain parts of a house and some fixtures.
homeowner’s insurance
This insurance includes hazard coverage for any damages that may affect the value of a house, in addition to personal liability and theft coverage.
homeowners’ association (HOA)
A group that governs a subdivision, condominium, or planned community. The association collects monthly fees from all owners to pay for common area maintenance, handle legal and safety issues, and enforce the covenants, conditions, and restrictions set by the developer.
homeowners’ association dues
Monthly payments due to a homeowners’ association, to be used for maintenance and communal expenses. Condominiums, townhouse complexes, and planned unit developments (PUDs) may require monthly home owners’ association dues.
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homeowners’ warranty
A special insurance policy that covers certain home repairs for a specified amount of time.
A parcel of land used by the owner as a primary residence.
A document that to protects some of a home’s equity from lawsuits.
A term used to describe an area or neighborhood where the property types and uses are similar and compatible.
hopper window
A window that contains a single sash that tilts inward.
hose bibb
A threaded faucet connection for devices such as a washing machine.
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hot wire
An ungrounded conductor that carries electrical current from the source. Hot wires usually (but don’t always) have black or red insulation.
house wrap
A polyethylene barrier wrapped around a house to save energy.
housing discrimination
The illegal practice of denying an individual or group the right to buy or rent a home based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, or family status.
housing expense ratio
The percentage of gross monthly income devoted to housing costs.
Abbreviation of (the U.S. Department of) Housing and Urban Development, a federal agency that oversees the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and a variety of housing and community development programs.
HUD-1 Uniform Settlement Statement
A closing statement or settlement sheet that outlines all closing costs on a real estate transaction or refinancing.
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A type of ceiling fan that uses little vertical space. It is usually used in homes with low ceilings.
Thermostat-like device that measures the amount of water vapor in the air and turns a humidifier or dehumidifier on and off accordingly.
Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning.
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