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Our glossary of industry terms is one of the most visited sections of our site. We work continually to keep it current and are always adding new terms. In addition, if you ever can't find an industry word you are looking for, let us know. We'll research it and add it for you.

  • Landlord's warrant

    A warrant from a landlord to levy upon a tenant's personal property (e.g., furniture, etc.) and to sell this property at a public sale to compel payment of the rent or the observance of some other stipulation in the lease.

  • Lead manager

    The investment banking firm that handles the principal responsibilities for coordinating the new issuance of securities.

  • Lease

    An agreement whereby the owner of real property gives the right of possession to another for a specified period of time and for a specified consideration.

  • Lease agreement

    The formal legal document entered into between a landlord and a tenant to reflect the terms of the negotiations between them.

  • Lease commencement date

    The date usually constitutes the commencement of the term of the lease, whether or not the tenant has actually taken possession, so long as beneficial occupancy is possible.

  • Lease expiration exposure schedule

    A listing of the total square footage of all current leases that expire in each of the next five years, without regard to renewal options.

  • Leasehold interest

    The right to hold or use property for a fixed period of time at a given price, without transfer of ownership.

  • Legal description

    A geographical description identifying a parcel by government survey, metes and bounds, or lot numbers of a recorded plat including a description of any portion that is subject to an easement or reservation.

  • Legal owner

    The legal owner has title to the property, although the title may actually carry no rights to the property other than as a lien.

  • Letter of credit

    A commitment by a bank or other person that the issuer will honor drafts or other demands for payment upon full compliance with the conditions specified in the letter of credit. Letters of credit are often used in place of cash deposited with the landlord in satisfying the security deposit provisions of a lease.

  • Letter of intent

    A preliminary agreement stating the proposed terms for a final contract.

  • Leverage

    The use of credit to finance a portion of the costs of purchasing or developing a real estate investment. Positive leverage occurs when the interest rate is lower than the capitalization rate or projected internal rate of return. Negative leverage occurs when the current return on equity is diminished by the employment of debt.

  • LIBOR (London InterBank Offered Rate)

    The interest rate offered on Eurodollar deposits traded between banks, also called swaps.

  • Lien

    A claim or encumbrance against property used to secure a debt, a charge or the performance of some act.

  • Lien waiver

    Waiver of a mechanic's lien rights that is often required before the general contractor can receive a draw under the payment provisions of a construction contract. It may also be required before the owner can receive a draw on a construction loan.

  • Lifecycle

    The various developmental stages of a property: pre-development, development, leasing, operating and redevelopment (or rehab).

  • Like-kind property

    A term used in an exchange of property held for productive use in a trade or business or for investment. Unless cash is received, the tax consequences of the exchange are postponed pursuant to Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code.

  • Limited partnership

    A type of partnership comprised of one or more general partners who manage the business and are personally liable for partnership debts, and one or more limited partners who contribute capital and share in profits but who take no part in running the business and incur no liability above the amount contributed.

  • Liquidity

    The ease with which assets can be bought or sold without affecting the price.

  • Listing agreement

    An agreement between the owner of a property and a real estate broker giving the broker authorization to attempt to sell or lease the property at a certain price and terms in return for a commission, set fee or other form of compensation.

  • Loan-to-value ratio (LTV)

    The ratio of the value of the loan principal divided by the property's appraised value.

  • Lock-box structure

    A structure whereby the rental or debt-service payments are sent directly from the tenant or mortgagor to the trustee.

  • Lockout

    The period during which a loan may not be prepaid.

  • Long-term lease

    In most markets, this refers to a lease whose term is at least three years from initial signing to the date of expiration or renewal.

  • Loss severity

    The percentage of principal lost when a loan is foreclosed.

  • Lot

    Generally one of several contiguous parcels of land making up a fractional part or subdivision of a block, the boundaries of which are shown on recorded maps and plats.

  • Low-rise

    A building with fewer than four stories above ground level.

  • Lump-sum contract

    A type of construction contract requiring the general contractor to complete a building or project for a fixed cost normally established by competitive bidding. The contractor absorbs any loss or retains any profit.