underwater

adjective
un·​der·​wa·​ter | \ ˌən-dər-ˈwȯ-tər How to pronounce underwater (audio) , -ˈwä-\

Definition of underwater

1 : lying, growing, worn, performed, or operating below the surface of the water underwater plants
2 : being below the waterline of a ship
3a : having, relating to, or being a mortgage loan for which more is owed than the property securing the loan is worth
b : having, relating to, or being a stock option for which the price of the option is higher than the current market value of the stock

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Other Words from underwater

underwater adverb

Synonyms for underwater

Synonyms

aquatic, submarine, submerged, sunken

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Examples of underwater in a Sentence

underwater plants don't require as much light to grow as surface plants a vessel designed for underwater exploration

Recent Examples on the Web

Bystanders saw him go underwater and pulled the boy from the lake. Lyndsay Winkley, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Local teen dies in suspected drowning at Lake Mohave," 11 July 2018 But before the coral is glued onto the reef, it is nurtured in the group’s vast underwater nurseries. Evan Halper, latimes.com, "Racing to save Florida’s coral from climate change, scientists turn to a once-unthinkable strategy: ‘assisted evolution’," 9 July 2018 The more ships that pass through, the more likely mammals are to be struck, stressed by underwater noise, or have their daily activities interrupted. Frankie Schembri, Science | AAAS, "Narwhals, walruses are most at risk from booming Arctic ship traffic," 3 July 2018 Coastal regions also face more flooding from more frequent and destructive storms, the report said, such as last year’s Hurricane Michael, which came with heavy rains that left some parts of the East Coast underwater. Erica E. Phillips, WSJ, "At the Water’s Edge, Seaports Are Slowly Bracing for Rising Ocean Levels," 11 Feb. 2019 Midrange predictions include the loss of the majority of globalagricultural land and freshwater sources, with major coastal cities like New York and Mumbai ending up underwater. Abigail Higgins, Vox, "10 ways the world is most likely to end, explained by scientists," 18 Oct. 2018 Each pod has calls unique to them and their calls can travel as far as 10 miles underwater. Lynda V. Mapes, The Seattle Times, "What you need to know about the critically endangered southern resident killer whales," 25 Sep. 2018 Dryp Ever overwater a succulent or underwater a spider plant? Liz Stinson, Curbed, "New app Dryp wants to be your ‘personal plant assistant’," 18 Sep. 2018 Magic Words: My power is unshakeable, even underwater. Bess Matassa, Teen Vogue, "Weekly Horoscopes August 27-September 2," 20 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'underwater.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of underwater

1627, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

17 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for underwater

The first known use of underwater was in 1627

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More Definitions for underwater

underwater

adjective

Financial Definition of underwater

What It Is

In the real estate world, underwater means that a property is worth less than what is owed on it.

How It Works

For example, let's say John Doe buys a house for $500,000. He makes a down payment on the house and borrows $400,000 to pay for the rest. Two years later, John loses his job and has to sell the house and move. However, the housing market has slipped in his town, and the house is only worth $300,000 right now. John owes $395,000 on the loan. He is underwater.

Even if he sells the house for $300,000, he would pay off only $300,000 of the loan and would still owe $95,000. Accordingly, if John were to sell the house for $300,000, he would need the bank to agree to write off the remaining $95,000. Thus, if John finds a buyer at $300,000, his lender would need to approve the sale and could even halt the sale if it believes that the house can be sold for more than $300,000. Every dollar below $395,000 is money lost to the lender.

Why It Matters

If a homeowner has to move right away, underwater mortgages can lead to short sales, which can be long and arduous. This is primarily because extra lenders are involved, and the bureaucracy of approving and processing a sale can scare off potential buyers who want to close on a house purchase quickly. However, buyers (that is, people who might want to buy John Doe's $300,000 house, in our example) can often get good deals on homes that have underwater mortgages, because lenders do not want to be in the business of owning real estate, want to be repaid as quickly as possible, and in our case, would rather have $300,000 than foreclose on the house.

Source: Investing Answers

underwater

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of underwater

: located, used, done, or happening below the surface of water

underwater

adjective
un·​der·​wa·​ter | \ ˈən-dər-ˈwȯ-tər How to pronounce underwater (audio) , -ˈwä-\

Kids Definition of underwater

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: lying, growing, worn, performed, or operating below the surface of the water an underwater cave underwater somersaults

underwater

adverb
un·​der·​wa·​ter | \ ˌən-dər-ˈwȯ-tər How to pronounce underwater (audio) , -ˈwä-\

Kids Definition of underwater (Entry 2 of 2)

: under the surface of the water I like to swim underwater.

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underwater

adjective
un·​der·​wa·​ter

Legal Definition of underwater

1 : owing more on a mortgage loan than the property securing the loan is worth underwater homeowners
2 : being or relating to a mortgage loan in which more is owed than the property securing the loan is worth underwater mortgages underwater properties

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