Buying Made Easy


Buyer’s Guide to Real Estate

In a fast moving market you need a reliable route, choose The Robles Route.

To receive the best service in the San Antonio, Austin, & Del Rio areas, you need to hire Robles Real Estate.

The knowledge and experience you receive from our team of professionals will guide you to the home or property of your dreams.

In case you didn't know, as a buyer, my services are often free to you!

Choose Robles Real Estate


Reasons So Many People Choose The Robles Route

We utilize cutting edge technology to access databases of new homes, resale homes and lots for sale in Austin & San Antonio. We have databases of homes for sale that are not listed in the Multiple Listings Service.

We offer an umbrella of services to include: buyer and seller consultations, credit & lending resources, investor accommodations, and new home services.

We use our multiple industry skills to offer you advice and guide you through the entire process.

We have experience researching the market for the most current bond programs, down payment assistance programs, builder grand openings and incentive programs, financing options, and so much more.

We have the best resources to help buyers understand different loans programs, credit restoration programs, find the best interest rates available, and understand everything involved in purchasing a home.

At Robles Real Estate, we’re ready to help with every aspect of your property purchase, from financing to the day you get the keys. This section includes information on our many services, and resources to help you enter the market with confidence. Feel free to contact us anytime for more information.

Glossary of Buyer Terms


Terms Frequently Used When Purchasing A Home


Adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM): A mortgage whose interest rate changes over a time based on an index plus a margin.

Amortization: The gradual repayment of a mortgage by making payment installments.

Amortization schedule: A timetable for repayment of a mortgage showing the amount of each payment applied to interest and principal and the remaining balance.

Annual percentage rate (APR): The total yearly cost of a mortgage stated as a percentage of the loan amount; includes the base interest rate, primary mortgage insurance, and loan origination fee (points).

Appraisal: A professional opinion of the market value of a property.

Assumable mortgage: A mortgage that can be taken over (“assumed”) by the buyer when a home is sold.

Assumption: The transfer of the seller’s existing mortgage to the buyer.

Cap: A provision of an ARM limiting how much the interest rate or mortgage payments may increase.

Cash reserve: A requirement of some lenders that buyers have sufficient cash remaining after closing to make the first two mortgage payments.

Clear title: A title that is free of liens and legal questions regarding ownership of the property.

Contingency: A condition that must be met before a contract is legally binding.

Conventional mortgage: Any mortgage that is not insured or guaranteed by the federal government.

Deed: The legal document conveying title to a property.

Deed of trust: The document used in some states instead of a mortgage; title is conveyed to a trustee rather than to the borrower.

Discount points: See Points.

Down payment: The portion of the purchase price that the buyer pays in cash and does not finance with a mortgage.

Due-on-sale clause: A provision in a mortgage allowing the lender to demand repayment in full if the borrower sells the property securing the mortgage.

Earnest money: A deposit given to the seller to show that a prospective buyer is serious about purchasing the house.

Easement: A right of way giving persons other than the owner access to or over a property.

Equity: The difference between the market value of a property and the homeowner’s outstanding mortgage balance.

Equity loan: A loan based on the borrower’s equity in his or her home.

Escrow: The holding of documents and money by a neutral third party prior to closing; also, an account held by the lender into which a homeowner pays money for taxes and insurance.

FHA loan: A mortgage that the Federal Housing Administration insures.

First mortgage (lien): This is the mortgage that has first claim in the event of default.

Fixed-rate mortgage: A mortgage in which the interest rate does not change during the entire term of the loan.

Flood insurance: Insurance required for properties in federally designated flood areas.

Hazard insurance: Insurance to protect the homeowner and the lender against physical damage to a property from fire, wind, vandalism, or other hazards.

Homeowner’s insurance: An insurance policy that combines liability coverage and hazard insurance.

Interest: The fee charged for borrowing money.

Interest rate cap: A provision of an ARM limiting how much interest the rate may increase per adjustment period. See also Lifetime cap.

Lien: A legal claim against a property that must be paid when the property is sold.

Lifetime cap: A provision of an ARM that limits the total increase in interest rates over the life of the loan.

Loan servicing: The collection of mortgage payments from borrowers and related responsibilities of a loan servicer.

Loan-to-value ratio (LTV): The relationship between the amount of a mortgage and the total value of the property.

Lock-in: A written agreement guaranteeing the homebuyer a specified interest rate provided the loan is closed within a set period of time. The lock-in also usually specifies the number of points to be paid at closing.

Margin: The set percentage the lender adds to the index rate to determine the interest rate of an ARM.

Mortgage: A legal document that pledges a property to the lender as security for payment of a debt.

Mortgage banker: A company that originates mortgages exclusively for resale in the secondary market.

Mortgage broker: A company that for a fee matches borrowers with lenders.

Mortgage insurance: See Private mortgage insurance.

Mortgage insurance premium: The fee paid by a borrower to FHA or a private insurer for mortgage insurance. 

Mortgage note: A legal document obligating a borrower to repay a loan at a stated interest rate during a specified period of time; the agreement is secured by a mortgage.

Origination fee: A fee paid to a lender for processing a loan application; it is stated as a percentage of the mortgage amount, or points.

Owner financing: A purchase in which the seller provides all or part of the financing.

Payment cap: A provision of some ARMs limiting how much a borrower’s payments may increase regardless of how much the interest rate increases; may result in negative amortization.

PITI: Stands for principal, interest, taxes, and insurance – the components of a monthly mortgage payment.

Points: A one-time charge by the lender to increase the yield of the loan; a point is 1 percent of the amount of the loan.

Prepayment penalty: A fee charged to a borrower who pays off a loan before it is due.

Pre-qualification: The process of determining how much money a prospective homebuyer will be eligible to borrow before applying for a loan.

Principal: The amount borrowed or remaining unpaid; also, the part of the monthly payment that reduces the outstanding balance of a mortgage.

Private mortgage insurance (PMI): Insurance provided by non-government insurers that protect lenders against loss if a borrower defaults.

Qualifying ratios: Guidelines applied by lenders to determine how large a loan to grant a home- buyer.

Rate lock: See Lock-in.

Refinancing: The process of paying off one loan with the proceeds from a new loan secured by the same property.

Second mortgage: A mortgage that has rights that are subordinate to the rights of the first mortgage holder.

Settlement sheet: The computation of costs payable at closing which determines the seller’s net proceeds and the buyer’s net payment.

Survey: A drawing showing the legal boundaries of a property.

Title: A legal document establishing the right of ownership.

Title company: A company that specializes in insuring title to property.

Title insurance: Insurance to protect the lender (lender’s policy) or the buyer (owner’s policy) against loss arising from disputes over ownership of a property.

Title search: A check of the title records to ensure that the seller is the legal owner of the property and that there are no liens or other claims outstanding.

Truth-in-Lending: A federal law that requires lenders to fully disclose, in writing, the terms and conditions of a mortgage including the APR and other charges.

Underwriting: The process of evaluating a loan application to determine the risk involved for the lender.

VA loan: A loan that the Veterans Administration guarantees.