A second mortgage typically refers to a secured loan (or mortgage) that is subordinate to another loan against the same property. In real estate, a property can have multiple loans or liens against it. The loan which is registered with county or city registry first is called the first mortgage or first position trust deed. The lien registered second is called the second mortgage. A property can have a third or even fourth mortgage, but those are rarer. Second mortgages are called subordinate because, if the loan goes into default, the first mortgage gets paid off first before the second mortgage. Thus, second mortgages are riskier for lenders and generally come with a higher interest rate than first mortgages.
In most cases, a second mortgage takes the form of a home equity loan and the two are synonymous, from a financial standpoint. The difference in terminology is that a mortgage traditionally refers to the legal lien instrument, rather than the debt itself. The term length of a second mortgage varies. Terms can last up to 30 years on second mortgages; however repayment may be required in as little as one year depending on the loan structure. An interest rate is the price a borrower pays for the use of money he does not own, and the return a lender receives for deferring the use of funds, by lending it to the borrower. Interest rates are normally expressed as a percentage rate over the period of one year.
A secured loan is a loan in which the borrower pledges some asset (e.g. a car or property) as collateral for the loan, which then becomes a secured debt owed to the creditor who gives the loan. The debt is thus secured against the collateral in the event that the borrower defaults, the creditor takes possession of the asset used as collateral and may sell it to satisfy the debt by regaining the amount originally lent to the borrower.
From the creditor's perspective this is a category of debt in which a lender has been granted a portion of the bundle of rights to specified property. The opposite of secured debt/loan is unsecured debt, which is not connected to any specific piece of property and instead the creditor may satisfy the debt against the borrower rather than just the borrowers collateral. Some commercial mortgages are nonrecourse, that is, that in the event of default in repayment, the creditor can only seize the collateral, but has no further claim against the borrower for any remaining deficiency.
The general reason for this is twofold: many laws significantly prevent the creditor from going after the borrower for any deficiency, and mortgages structured for sale as bonds give a higher priority to constantly receiving some sort of income and therefore require a clause which allows the lender to take the property immediately, regardless of bankruptcy proceedings that the borrower might be going through.
The majority of Commercial Mortgages in the United States, while requiring the borrower to simply make a monthly payment small enough to pay off the loan over a 20 to 30 year time frame, require a balloon payment (a total payoff) after a lesser time frame.The borrower most likely will attempt at that time to refinance the loan or sell the property.Thus there are two elements generally to the term of a commercial mortgage loan: the length of time allowed until balloon payment (known simply as the term), and the amortization. The length of the loan can vary from a matter of days to 30 years. If a loan had a 30 year amortization schedule, but a 10 year term it would commonly be referred to as a 10 year balloon with a 30 year payment schedule.
In some legal systems, unsecured creditors who are also indebted to the insolvent debtor are able (and in some jurisdictions, must) set-off the debts, which actually puts the unsecured creditor with a matured liability to the debtor in a pre-preferential position.A home buyer or builder can obtain financing (a loan) either to purchase or secure against the property from a financial institution, such as a bank, either directly or indirectly through intermediaries. Features of mortgage loans such as the size of the loan, maturity of the loan, interest rate, method of paying off the loan, and other characteristics can vary considerably.