The term “underwater” has commonly been used in the housing industry to describe troubled mortgages. Now, Merriam-Webster announced it’s recognizing the word by adding it to the dictionary.
So what’s the official meaning of the mortgage-related term?
According to the 2012 update of the Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, “underwater” in the real estate sense is defined as “having, relating to, or being a mortgage loan for which more is owed than the property securing the loan is worth.”
Other commonly used real estate-related words added to the 2012 dictionary include: “man cave” (“a room or space — as in a basement — designed according to the taste of the man of the house to be used as his personal area for hobbies and leisure activities”) and technology words like “cloud computing” (“the practice of storing regularly used computer data on multiple servers that can be accessed through the Internet”) and “mash-up” (“something created by combining elements from two or more sources”).