BackfillThe slope of the ground around a house.
Ball Cock ValveThe valve inside a toilet tank that controls the filling of the tank.
Balloon MortgageA mortgage loan in which the monthly payments are not large enough to repay the loan by the end of the term. So at the end of the term, the remaining balance comes due in a single large payment.
Balloon PaymentThe final large payment at the end of a balloon mortgage term.
BankruptcyLegally declared unable to pay your debts as they become due. Bankruptcy can severely impact your ability to borrow money. Talk to a credit counselor as soon as you realize you are having problems paying your bills on time to try to prevent bankruptcy.
BeamA structural supporting member.
Bill of SaleA physical receipt indicating the sale of property.
Binder or Offer to PurchaseA preliminary agreement, secured by the payment of earnest money, between a buyer and seller as an offer to purchase real estate. A binder secures the right to purchase real estate upon agreed terms for a limited period of time. If the buyer changes his mind or is unable to purchase, the earnest money is forfeited unless the binder expressly provides that it is to be refunded.
Biweekly MortgageA mortgage where you make "half payments" every two weeks, rather than one payment per month. This results in making the equivalent of 13 monthly payments per year, rather than 12, significantly reducing the time it takes to pay off a thirty year mortgage.
Blighted AreaAny region of a city or town that has fallen into disrepair or otherwise has become undesirable.
Bona FideAny genuine offer, made without intent to defraud or deceive.
Bridge FinancingAn interim loan made to facilitate the purchase of a new home before the buyer's current residence sells and its equity is available to fund the new purchase.
BridgingStructural members used between beams to strengthen the structure.
BrokerAn individual who facilitates the purchase of property by bringing together a buyer and a seller.
BTUBritish Thermal Unit. A unit of measurement used to describe heating or cooling capacity.
Buffer ZoneA segment of land between two disparate municipal zones which acts as a shield to keep one zone from encroaching upon the other. Often used to separate residential districts from commercial areas.
Building CodeRegulations that ensure the safety and material compliance of new construction within a municipality. Building codes are localized to ensure they are adequate to meet the risk of common hazards.
Building Line or SetbackThe statutory distance between buildings and the property line, imposed by municipalities, home associations, or other agreements.
Built-InsSpecific items of personal property which are installed in a real estate improvement such that they become part of the building. Built-in microwave ovens and dishwashers are common examples.
BungalowA one-story, home-style dating from the early twentieth century. Often characterized by a low-pitched roof.
Buy DownExtra money paid in a lump sum to reduce the interest rate of a fixed rate mortgage for a period of time. The extra money may be paid by the borrower, in order to have a lower payment at the beginning of the mortgage. Or paid by the seller, or lender, as incentive to buy the property or take on the mortgage.
BX CableElectrical cable shrouded in a galvanized steel outer cover.