Commercial Mortgages: How to evaluate the different types of commercial mortgage

C-loans claims there are 12 distinct commercial mortgages. The following article groups these 12 types under three categories, permanent, equity and short term commercial loans.

Essentially conventional commercial mortgages differ from residential mortgages, in that commercial mortgages finance the purchase of commercial property. Standard commercial mortgages are sometimes referred to as “permanent loans,” and characteristically have terms longer than five years with some degree of amortization.

3page_img3-bigCommercial property owners can also take out second mortgages. However second mortgages are uncommon when it comes to commercial property. The terms of many permanent loans expressly forbid borrowers taking out a second mortgage. A more common practice is for corporations to borrow against shares ownership, known as a mezzanine loan. In case default mezzanine loans usually grant lenders the option to buy back shares ownership in a corporation and seize control of the companies property.

Some types of commercial financing are not even loans at all.These arrangements are termed equity partnerships. In a preferred equity partnership a “preferred” investor lends a corporation money for a fixed share of the company’s profits in the future. In addition there are joint venture and venture equity partnerships. Joint venture partners often finance the full price of a construction project in exchange for a fixed share of the properties future income. Joint partnerships are far more difficult to secure in comparison with venture equity partnerships. Venture equity partnerships often involve smaller originators, such as debt funds or real estate investment trusts.

Commercial mortgages differ from residential mortgages mainly in the variety of short term loan options avalable.

Bridge loan are short term loans which give a borrower time to lease or renovate a property. The terms of bridge loans generally run 1 to 2 years. Bridge loans are usually interest only and offer a considerably faster approval process than a traditional commercial mortgage. Construction loans are another type of short term commercial lending. As the name implies, construction loans are used for the purpose of building new commercial developments. Construction loans often have terms of 12 to 18 months, and are only released as a construction proceeds. Notably borrowers only pay interest on the amount of the loan released throughout the course of the construction project rather than paying interest on the total loan amount.

Construction lenders often require borrowers to take out unique and sometimes very costly commercial mortgages before any loan is approved, known as take out commitment loans.

Take out commitment loans are conventional loans taken out before the balloon payment on a construction loan comes due. Take out commitment loans are sometimes issued in the form of promissory notes. This averts the risk for a construction lender that a borrower will default when a construction loan comes due. These notes are referred to as forward and stand by take out commitment loans. These loans take on the form of a letter issued by a mortgage provider that promises to deliver a takeout loan within a period of 18 months after a construction project has been completed. Often these letters stipulate certain construction specifications or occupancy rates. They are usually expensive and often go for one to two points of the total loan amount. There are also stand-by take out commitments loans. Stand by take out commitment loans have far more onerous terms than forward take out commitment loans.

Commercial loans come in many shapes and sizes. It is important to have a clear understanding of what each type of loan entails and how each loan should applied. A conventional mortgage can help purchase property, a mezzanine loan or a bridge loan can help fund expansion and a construction loan is obviously used to get new projects off the ground. Take out commitment loans are usually meant to appease construction lenders, who take on the risk that a borrower may default when a construction loan comes due.

Dennis Dahlberg
Level 4 Funding LLC  Private Hard Money Lender
Arizona Tel:  (623) 582-4444
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22601 N 19th Ave Suite 112 | Phoenix | AZ | 85027
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About the Author:  Dennis has been working in the real estate industry in some capacity for the last 40 years. He purchased his first property when he was just 18 years old. He quickly learned about the amazing investment opportunities provided by trust deed investing and hard money loans. His desire to help others make money in real estate investing led him to specialize in alternative funding for real estate investors who may have trouble getting a traditional bank loan. Dennis is passionate about alternative funding sources and sharing his knowledge with others to help make their dreams come true. Dennis has been married to his wonderful wife for 42 years. They have 2 beautiful daughters 5 amazing grandchildren. Dennis has been an Arizona resident for the past 40 years.

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