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Abstract of Judgment
A summary of the essential provisions of a court judgment. When recorded, an abstract of judgment creates a general lien on all of the real property of the judgment debtor in the county in which it is recorded.

Acknowledgment
A formal declaration made before a duly authorized officer (usually a notary public) by a person who has executed an instrument that such execution is his or her act and deed.

Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM)
A mortgage in which the interest rate is adjusted periodically according to a preselected index. The terms, adjustment schedule and index to be used can vary based on the particular lender.

American Land Title Association (ALTA)
A national association of title insurance companies, abstractors, and agents. The association adopts standard title policy forms.

Amortization
The process of paying off a debt in installments over a given period of time without a final balloon payment.

Annual Percentage Rate (APR)
An expression of the percentage relationship of the total finance charges to the total amount to be financed, as required under the federal Truth-in-Lending act.

Appraisal
An opinion of the value of property resulting from an analysis of facts affecting market value.

Assessed Valuation
The value that a taxing authority places upon real or personal property for the purpose of taxation.

Assumable
A mortgage loan which can be transferred to another person without a change in the terms of the loan.