Real Estate Definitions
Hazard insurance: Insurance protection for specified losses due to natural causes, such as fire, floods, earthquake, tornadoes, and other "acts of God".
Heir: An individual who will potentially inherit an interest in land from someone who dies.
Hiatus: A gap or space between two parcels of lands that is not included in the legal description of either parcel.
Home equity line of credit, or Home equity loan: A mortgage loan (usually not the primary mortgage) or line of credit which gives the property owner the option to obtain cash advances from the loan proceeds, using his or her residence as collateral, but which is not to exceed a pre-arranged amount of the owner's total equity in the property.
Homeowners' association: A nonprofit association of individual owners of units in a multi-unit structure (either a planned unit development, or a condominium) that manages the common areas of that structure. In a planned unit development (PUD) project, the association holds title to the common elements, whereas in a condominium project, it holds no title to the common elements.
Homeowner's insurance: An insurance policy available to residential real estate owners that protects homeowners against financial loss from fire, theft, public liability, and other risks.
Homestead: Real estate that is owned and utilized as the primary family residence, protected in some states as exempt from the claims of creditors.
Homestead deed: A document filed in the land records asserting a homestead exemption, protecting a variable amount of his assets (depending on which state) against the claims of creditors.
Housing ratio, or Debt-to-income ratio: The percentage that results from dividing a borrower's housing expenses by his/her gross monthly income, used by the lender to evaluate an applicant's qualification for a loan.
HUD-1 statement: The document used in closing a real estate transaction (also known as a "closing statement" or a "settlement sheet") which itemizes the funds that are payable at closing, including broker commissions, loan costs, and escrow amounts, and which provides a summary of the seller's net proceeds and the buyer's net payment at closing. It is required by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) whenever federally-related mortgages are being made on residential properties.