Escrow Terms & Phrases


Terms and Phrases is Commonwealth Land Title's Glossary of definitions, meanings, and descriptions of significance for some of our industry's most often used terms and phrases.

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Take Out Loan -- The "permanent" (long term) financing of real estate after completion of construction.

Tax Deed -- (1) Deed from tax collector to government body after a period of non-payment of taxes according to statute. (2) Deed to a purchaser at a public sale of land taken for delinquent taxes. The purchaser receives only such title as the former owners had, and strict procedures must be followed to prevent attachment of prior liens.

Tax Lien -- (1) A lien for nonpayment of property taxes. Attaches only to the property upon which the taxes are unpaid. (2) A federal income tax lien. May attach to all property of the one owing the taxes.

Tax Roll -- A list, usually published by a county, containing the descriptions of all parcels in said county, the names of the owners (or those receiving the tax bill), the assessed value and tax amount.

Tentative Map -- A map submitted by a subdivider to a planning commission for approval; approval is usually conditioned upon charges. The final map, embodying the changes, is recorded.

Testate -- Having written a last will and testament.

Title Company -- An agency issuing the policy of a title insurance company.

Title Insurance -- Insurance against loss resulting from defects of title to a specifically described parcel of real property. Defects may run to the fee (chain of title) or to encumbrance.

Title Insurance Company -- A company which issues insurance regarding the title of real property.

Title Order -- An order for a search of title to some parcel of property, eventually leading to the issuance of a policy of title insurance.

Title Page -- The page in a subdivision map which is signed by all parties having an interest in the land, agreeing to the subdivision.

Title Plant -- A filing of all recorded information to real property, paralleling the records of the county recorder's office, although the filing system may be different.

Title Search -- A review of all recorded documents affecting a specific piece of property to determine the present condition of the title.

Tombstone Title -- Information to validate title taken from tombstones, such as the death of the owner, date of death, names of survivors, etc.

Torrens Title -- A system by which title to land is registered with a registrar of land titles, instead of being recorded. Originally established by Sir Torrens in Australia in 1858.

Transfer Tax -- State tax on the transfer of real property. Based on purchase price or money changing hands. Check statues for each state. Also called the documentary transfer tax.

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