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Commercial Hard Money Loans and the Short Sale

The Essence of the commercial real estate hard money loan (HML) is based on the fact that they are short term loans for real estate investors to purchase and or rehab investment property that has substantial real equity. Commercial Real Estate Investors can make lots of money investing in properties using a hard money loan. For traditional financing the value of the property is the lesser of the purchase price or the appraised value. This definition does not account for distressed property which may be sold below market value and thus has real equity when compared to similar properties. This definition works for traditional lending as the best definition of value. It is impossible to determine future value of property that may not be in good condition or may have other appraisal value issues that may stop the property from being sold on the to a traditional consumer instead of an investor. There are greater risks inherent in a property that needs to be renovated and does not meet its highest or best use.

Invest with Hard Money Loans

The HML or bridge loans are only made to real estate investors on commercial and residential properties that will only be used by the investor as an investment (not owner occupied) property. This is to keep in line with the laws of usury and predatory lending. To charge higher fees and interest rates to consumers is illegal. Real Estate Investing is a business. Businesses are should know enough to determine the risk and reward of an investment and therefore have no “consumer protection” like predatory lending. Business owners can determine which course of financing they would pursue and if the cost are justified by the potential reward. I would never finance my home or suggest anyone to do so using a HML. There are situations I would invest in a short sale property that I can purchase at 30% to 50% below the true market value even if it costs me 10% in fees and double the normal interest rate. So even assuming this adds 15% to the costs I would still be way ahead when I refinance or sell the property.

Lending Institutions

Many financial institutions are willing to accept less than what is owed them on the sale of properties they have lent money on to avoid having another none preforming asset being added to their books. Non performing assets mean that a bank will be judged by federal regulators as making bad loans. This puts them at risks of takeover or just reduces their rating as a prudent bank. Banks are not in the real estate management or RE sales business. Therefore, there is a limit to the number of RE properties they can own or manage. All these are reasons to accept less (accept a short sale) versus accept nothing and carry another none performing asset on the balance sheet. This is neither good to regulators or shareholders as it drives the value of the financial institution down.

Another reason banks accept short sales is that if they have to foreclose on a property that adds maintenance, Realtor and legal costs while the market value of a property reduces greatly when the occupant is evicted and the building sits vacant. So who can say the reduced amount the bank accepts as a short sale would not ultimately be more than they may have otherwise gotten off of a deal via foreclosure and the vacancy of a property.

Commercial Bridge Loans and The Short Sale.

These reasons the door for investors to purchase commercial real estate below market value employing the short sale and use hard money loans to finance these deals is wide open. The real estate investors will have the benefit of putting little or no money down and even get funds to rehabilitate the building to make them more saleable or qualify for conventional refinancing once stabilized. To properly employ creative financing, hard money lenders and other strategies to purchase commercial investment properties seek the advice of competent, experienced and creative lenders with integrity.

Commercial Hard Money Loans 101

Commercial real estate investors compete to buy a wide variety of high-value properties on a daily basis. For some investors, financing properties is a matter of tapping into a bank account. For others, buying investment properties requires securing private financing. However, not all commercial buyers qualify for financing through traditional lending institutions. These borrowers are often served by private lenders who offer hard private financing for the purchase of commercial properties.

Sometimes known as private money or equity-based loans, these loans provide financing when traditional lending institutions simply can’t or won’t. Buyers might not meet the strict requirements of banks or might want to purchase properties that are difficult to appraise. Other investors focus on buying commercial properties that need to be rehabbed, but banks are often reluctant to finance these types of purchases. In these situations, hard money loans can be used to finance properties.

Why Use Commercial Hard Money Loans?

For commercial borrowers, hard money loans make a great deal of sense. After all, making the most of your buying power means not only finding great properties, but knowing when to buy them. They are often used by investors who need to make timely offers on properties and can’t wait on approvals from traditional lending institutions. They can also be used to:
• Purchase distressed properties.
• Finance non-conventional properties.
• Finance ground-up construction projects.
• Bridge gaps between business operating expenses and available funds.

Who Uses Commercial Hard Money Loans?

While they may not receive much attention on TV or in your local newspaper’s real estate section, that doesn’t mean that they aren’t widely used by investors. In fact, commercial private money loans are used by many different types of buyers:

• Seasoned investors who want to leverage the value of their real estate portfolios.
• New investors who want to get a stake in the game.
• Buyers who prefer to fix and flip commercial properties.
• Business owners who want to refinance or cash out their properties.

Investing with Commercial Hard Money Loans

If you’re considering investing in property using a commercial hard money loan, it’s important to remember that good planning is key to realizing a high return on investment (ROI). It’s essential to plan for the property’s use before making a purchase. It’s also a good idea for investors to sit down with their financial advisors and review their equity and holdings so that they can make the right real estate investment purchases with the right type of financing.