property & real estate law

Chattel

A catch-all category of property mostly associated with movable goods. At common law, chattel included all property that was not real estate and not attached to real estate. Examples included everything from leases, to cows, to clothes. In modern...

Chattel Mortgage

An antiquated term for a mortgage on personal goods (as opposed to real estate) where the lender holds an interest in the property as security for the loan. Today these arrangements are referred to as "security agreements".

Chattel Paper

In secured transactions, a document used to sell property on credit while retaining some interest in the property. Chattel paper must show: (1) a monetary obligation from Party A to Party B, and (2) a security interest or other interest retained in...

CID

An abbrevation for Common Interest Development

Cleaning Fee

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law DictionaryA nonrefundable fee charged by a landlord when a tenant moves in. The fee covers the cost of cleaning the rented premises after the tenant moves out, even if the tenant leaves the place spotless. Cleaning...

Clear Title

Clear title is a title free of claims, doubts, or disputes about ownership. These claims, doubts, or disputes about ownership can arise from liens or encumbrances. Clear title is free from material defects and is necessary before...

Closing

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law DictionaryThe final step in the sale and purchase of real estate in which the seller's deed of title is exchanged for the buyer's payment. Some of the final documents, including the deed and mortgage or deed of...

Closing Costs

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary

All settlement or transaction charges (above and beyond the actual cost of the property) that home buyers (or sellers) need to pay at the close of escrow when the property is transferred. These...

Cloud on Title

A cloud on title is a claim or encumbrance that affects the ownership of a property. These claims or encumbrances can arise from easements or mortgages on the land. They can also arise from a defect in a deed or a lien that may...

Co-operative (Co-op)

A form of business organization. Though generally a creature of state law, some federal laws apply to some co-ops as well. Co-ops differ from corporations and other business organizations both in their essentially democratic nature and in that their...

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