Meaning of down payment

down' pay'ment

Pronunciation: [key]
  1. an initial amount paid at the time of purchase, in installment buying, time sales, etc.
  2. any initial or partial payment, gift, favor, or recompense, as to reduce one's indebtedness or express one's obligation or gratitude: This gift is just a down payment for all the favors I owe you.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.