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Information about home, mortgage, insurance, homebuyer, real estate, property, buy home, home insurance, financing, home financing, home buyer, first time homebuyer, homes, homebuying, credit, condo.

 


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Home Terms Main Page

This site contains comprehensive definitions for a wide range of terms that cover topics such as home, mortgage, insurance, homebuyer, real estate, property, buy home, home insurance, financing, home financing, home buyer, first time homebuyer, homes, homebuying, credit, condo...

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Cash Surrender Value

This is the amount available to the owner of a life insurance policy upon voluntary termination of the policy before it becomes payable by the death of the life insured. This does not apply to term insurance but only to those policies which have reduced paid up values and cash surrender values. A cash surrender in lieu of death benefit usually has tax implications.


Living Benefit

Some insurance companies include this benefit option at no cost to their policy holders. The insurer considers on a case to case basis, the need for insurance funds before death. If the insured can demonstrate a shortened life of less than two years and with some insurers one year, the insurer will consider releasing up to 50% or a maximum of $100,000 of the life insurance coverage held by the insured. Not all insurers offer this benefit for free. The need has resulted in specific stand alone living benefit/critical illness policies coming into existence. Look under "Different types of Life Insurance" for further information. You might have heard of "Viatical Settlements", the practice of seriously ill people selling the rights to their life insurance policies to third parties. This practice is common in the United States but has not caught on in Canada.


Non-Smoker Discount

In October 1996 it was announced in the international news that scientists had finally located the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer. In the early 1980's, some Canadian Life Insurance Companies had already started recognizing that non-smokers had a better life expectancy than smokers so commenced offering premium discounts for life insurance to new applicants who have been non-smokers for at least 12 months before applying for coverage. Today, most life insurance companies offer these discounts.
Savings to non-smokers can be up to 50% of regular premium depending on age and insurance company. Most life insurance companies offering non-smoker rates insist that the person applying for coverage have abstained from any form of tobacco or marijuana for at least twelve months, some companies insist on longer periods, up to 15 years.
Tobacco use is generally considered to be cigarettes, cigarillos, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco, nicorette gum, snuff, marijuana and nicotine patches. In addition to these, if anyone tests positive to cotinine, a by-product of nicotine, they are also considered a smoker. There are some insurance companies which allow moderate or occasional use of cigars, cigarillos or pipes as acceptable for non-smoker status. Experienced brokers are aware of how to locate these insurance companies and save you money.
Special care should be taken by applicants for coverage who qualify for non-smoker rates by virtue of having ceased a smoking habit for the required period before application, but for some reason, fall back into the smoking habit some time after obtaining coverage. While contractually, the insurance company is still bound to a non-smoking rate, the facts of the applicant's smoking hiatus may become vague over the subsequent years of the resumed habit and at time of death claim, the insurance company may decide to contest the original non-smoking declaration. The consequence is not simply a need to back pay the difference between non-smoker and smoker rates but in reality the possibility of denial of death claim. It is therefore, important to advise the servicing broker as well as the insurance company of the change in smoking habits to make certain that sufficient evidence is documented to track the non-smoking period.


Maturity

The time when a policy or annuity reaches the end of its span.


Deposit

A sum of money deposited in trust by the purchaser when making an offer to be held in trust by the vendor's agent, broker, lawyer or notary until the closing of the transaction.


Equity

The interest of the owner in a property over and above all claims against the property. It is usually the difference between the market value of the property and any outstanding encumbrances.



Fire Insurance

Before a mortgage can be advanced, the purchaser must have arranged fire insurance. A certificate or binder from the insurance company may be required on closing.


Mortgage Term

The number of years or months over which you pay a specified interest rate. Terms usually range from six months to 10 years.


Coach home

One of a group of homes in a two-story building, with own garage and entrance.


Equity

The value of a homeowner's unencumbered interest in real estate. Equity is the difference between the home's fair market value and the unpaid balance of the mortgage and any outstanding liens. Equity increases as the mortgage is paid down or as the property appreciates.


Building Code

A comprehensive set of laws that controls the construction or remodeling of a home or other structure.


Cantilever

A projecting structure supported on one end, such as a balcony.


Resilient Channels

Metal channels used to further inhibit sound transmission through wall and ceiling framing. Create a break in the vibration path from drywall to the framing.


Slab Foundation

For a slab foundation, the site is leveled off, and a trench is dug around the perimeter of the home site. Gravel is then spread across the site, and concrete is poured approximately four inches thick over wire mesh and a moisture barrier. In areas of load bearing walls, trenches need to be dug to allow for additional thickness at this location. Slab foundations have no piers or floor joists, and the concrete slab is the floor system.


Turnkey

A term used when the subcontractor provides all materials (and labor) for a job.


 

 

 

 

 



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