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Real Estate Dictionary

 

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UNDERLYING FINANCING - A mortgage, deed of trust, etc. prior to (underlying) a land contract, mortgage, etc, on the same property.
UNDERWRITER - One who insures another. A small title company may buy insurance from a larger one (the underwriter) for all or part of the liability or its policies. 
UNDISCLOSED PRINCIPAL - A principal whose identity is not revealed by an agent.
UNDUE INFLUENCE - Influence used to destroy the will of another so that his decisions is not of his free will. 
UNENCUMBERED - Free of liens and other encumbrances. Free and clear.
UNIFORM COMMERCIAL CODE - A code/law which regulates the transfer of personal property; it took the place of the various state statutes covering chattel mortgages, conditional sales, trust receipts, etc.
UNIFORMITY - A term used to describe equality in the burden of taxation in both assessment and the rate of taxation.
UNILATERAL CONTRACT - A contract where one party expressly makes a promise. the other party, although having made no reciprocal promise may be obligated by law or may be required to give consideration.
UNITY OF TITLE - In joint tenancy, the holding by the joint tenants under the same title.
UNMARKETABLE TITLE - Not saleable. Having serious defects.
UNRECORDED INSTRUMENT - A mortgage, deed, etc., which is not recorded and therefore not protected under recording statutes. An unrecorded instrument is valid between the parties but is not protected from the innocent acts of third parties.
USEFUL LIFE - An appraisal term for evaluation purposes. The economic life of a piece of real property in terms of use by its owner. In tax terms the number of years that an item can be depreciated. The useful life starts over when a new owner acquires the property.
USURY - Charging an interest rate greater than the rate permitted by law.
UTILITIES - Public utilities companies under the control of Public Utilities Commission such as the gas, water, electric, and telephone companies.
  
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