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Commercial Loan Financing – Funding Business Growth

Actually, traditional financing may not be the only way of getting money or borrowing money that your need in order to move forward with your projects or business. You can look for commercial financing loan from a lender who specializes in funding your projects.

Commercial financing loan are designed only for business purposes and they understand the business that you do where in they regularly work with business like yours.

The commercial financing loan is available for wide variety of projects and can be approved far more quickly than traditional bank loans. So in finding a commercial financing loan, be sure that you are working with a great lender that is willing and able to work with you to smooth out the process of growing your business knowing that there are other business professionals which are not sure where to look for in order to find the right commercial financing loan that they need.

To be sure, try to ask from your friends or relatives if they know of a reputable commercial loan financing where you can be at ease and help you with your problem in financing loan for your business. Take note that commercial loan financing is also known as commercial mortgage financing.

Before anything else or looking for the commercial loan financing, you need to organize, plan and complete the detailed business plan to get commercial financing loan since the lenders want to know extremely the details of your proposed business ventures before they could help you. You need to show them your targets and describe to them in details how you will run or operate your business. Show the lender how many people you need to work with you on your business, monthly expenses, and estimated profit and how you intend your business to generate cash flow.

You need to have a complete economic and cash flow assessment in order to gain the commercial loan financing and show them how your business future will be good in the area where you wish your business to start. If the lender find your business effective through your cash flow assessment that means you know how to manage the money then for sure they can help you with your business.

Don’t go to one commercial loan financing but instead go out and shop for it and compare their interest rates, term and conditions so that you can get the best commercial loan financing that suit best to your needs. What is important in commercial loan financing is that they are trustworthy, reliable lender who knows you, your goals and your needs. You need to have a solid relationship with the lenders so that you feel as t ease and can ask a lower interest rate as possible.

Always be aware but most of the commercial loan financing always look for your credit score or records and you need to clear that first before applying for a commercial loan financing.

Commercial Loan Refinance – Timing is Critical

We are often are asked when is the optimal time to refinance a commercial real estate loan. Many factors such as market interest rates, prepayment penalties, existing loan terms and the overall goals of the borrower come into play. There are however no set answers, but below are some real world thoughts on how you might analyze your own commercial refinance.

Traditionally, the analysis to keep an existing loan in place or to refinance into a new commercial loan can become very complex. Financial advisors like to use the Discounted Cash Flow method which essentially compares the two loans on the Net Present Value basis.

We have found though, that most commercial building owners are primarily interested in how the proposed loan will:

1. Affect their monthly cash flow.

2. What the closing costs will be and how these costs will affect their equity.

3. What the out of pockets costs will be.

4. How long will it take for the increase in cash flow to “pay back” the owner.

Principal pay down is obviously another important component of any commercial loan. However, for most owners, especially those with highly leveraged properties, cash flow is more pressing than above. This is due to the relative high debt payment versus net cash after all the expenses have been paid.

Example 1. Owner occupied office building.

Borrower is 3 years into a 5 year fixed, 20 year amortized loan and is considering refinancing into a 30 year fixed, 30 year amortization commercial loan. The borrowers primary motivation is a desire to increase cash flow to help businesses overall profitability. In addition the borrower has concerns over future rate increases when the existing loan balloons

Existing Loan – 5 year fixed 20 year amortization.

Property Value $1,500,000

Current Loan Balance $1,075,000

Original Loan Balance $1,125,000 (Purchased building with 25% down)

Current Loan to Value 72%

Current Equity 28% or $420,000

Interest Rate 7.25%

Monthly Payment $10,418

Proposed Loan – 30 year fixed, 30 year amortization. Borrower is planning on rolling as much of the closing costs as possible into the loan amount to reduce “out of pocket” cash.

Property Value $1,500,000

Current Loan Balance $1,075,000

Closing Costs $19,638

Proposed Loan Amount $1,094,638

Proposed Loan to Value 73%

Interest Rate 8%

Monthly Payment $8,582

* Closing Cost Break Down (Title at $2000, Lender Legal Fees $2000, Origination Fee at 1% or $10,838, Appraisal $3,000, Environmental $1,800).

Increase in cash flow is $1,835 per month or $22,028 annual. Essentially, from a cash flow perspective, the borrower would recoup the costs of loan in less than one year, despite the rate increase by 75 basis points. Although the borrower would have to pay for the appraisal and environmental report upfront, they would be “refunded” for these costs at close if desired.

In our experience most business owners would be very interested in pursuing the proposed refinance.

Example 2. Investment Property, 10 Unit Retail Center.

Borrower has owned the property for 7 years and has two loans on the subject property. First loan is a conventional floating rate loan that adjusts annually, amortized over 25 years and the second is seller held. It is amortized over 20 years and has a fixed 20 year rate. Neither loan has a balloon provision; however the first loan does have a prepayment penalty of 5% of the remaining loan balance, which is in effect for 3 more years.

Property Current Value – 9% Cap $2,600,000 (Purchase for $2,300,000)

Combined Current Loan Balance $1,635,000

Original Loan Balance, 1st $1,610,000 (70% Loan to Value)

Original Loan Balance, 2nd $230,000 (10% Loan to Value)

Current Loan to Value 61%

Interest Rate, 1st 6.65%

Interest Rate, 2nd 7%

Current Debt Coverage Ratio 1.27

Net Operating Income $235,000

Combined Monthly Payment $15,448

Proposed Loan – 10 year fixed, 30 year amortization. Borrower is planning on combining the two loans together and wants the security of having a fixed rate loan. Borrower also wants to roll in as much of the closing costs as possible into the loan amount to reduce “out of pocket” cash.

Property Value – 9% Cap $2,600,000

Combined Current Loan Balance $1,635,000

Closing Costs $83,500 *

Proposed Loan Amount 1,735,568

Proposed Loan to Value 67%

Interest Rate 7.5%

Current Debt Coverage Ratio 1.54

Net Operating Income $235,000

Monthly Payment $12,743

Closing Cost Break Down (Pre Pay $72,500 [5% of 1st loan amount], Title at $3000, Lender Legal Fees at $2,200, Origination Fee at 1% or $17,185, Appraisal $4,000, Environmental $1,800) .

Cash flow increase is $2,704 per month or $32,449 per year while the cost to close the loan is high at $83,500 due primarily to the prepayment penalty. The borrower is facing a closing cost payback period of over two and a half years. In addition the interest rate has gone up considerable on the proposed loan, which of course increase the overall cost of the loan.

Not an easy decision for the borrower. The option to go forward would probably rest heavily on the borrower’s opinion of where the future interest rates will be when the prepayment period ends.

It is interesting to note that the borrower would be able to increase his loan amount to $2,333,964 (cash out proceeds would be approximately $598,000) if he choose too. This is due to the increase in cash flow. The building Debt Coverage Ratio would improve to a 1.54 – the typically minimum is DCR is 1.2. If the borrowers intent was to pull cash out of the property to inject into another property (or for any other reason) this would probably be a much easier decision to go forward with the loan.

Commercial Loan Retainer Fees

Retainer fees are “standard business practice” for some (but not all) commercial loan situations. It is understandable that a commercial borrower would rather not pay such a fee, so it is important for a commercial borrower to understand when it is more likely to be necessary. In fact a business loan retainer will not be necessary in many business loan scenarios. This is especially true of commercial financing such as business cash advances that takes less time and produces funding within just a few days.

For more time-consuming commercial loan processes, it is increasingly common for a retainer fee to be paid during the preliminary stages. This is especially true when working with business loan consultants that specialize in commercial loans. Most advisors who work with residential mortgage loans (and perform commercial loans as a sideline to their main business activities) will not charge a retainer fee because in many/most instances they are legally prevented from doing so by certain state and federal regulations (in other words, it is likely that they too would charge a retainer fee if not legally prohibited from doing so because of prevailing residential loan compliance issues).

So why wouldn’t a commercial borrower who doesn’t want to pay a retainer fee simply work with someone who doesn’t charge a retainer fee? Many commercial loan situations are too difficult for the average residential loan advisor to handle successfully. Similar to a person seeking a more expensive medical or legal specialist to help them when confronted by a serious medical or legal problem, most commercial borrowers have come to realize that business loan problems are frequently just as serious and complex and deserving of a commercial loan specialist.

It is in these situations when a commercial borrower is working with a business loan specialist that a retainer fee should be viewed as “standard business practice” for more difficult and time-consuming commercial loans. I have stated elsewhere that one of the most important lessons to be learned from a thorough analysis of commercial financing “trade-offs” is that the lowest rate is almost never associated with the best deal for the commercial borrower. A similar observation based on over 25 years of business loan experience: the lowest fees are also rarely associated with the best deal for the commercial borrower.

The fees charged by commercial loan specialists (including retainer fees when appropriate) are almost always higher than loan advisors who do not specialize in business loans. In the end, most of these borrowers still choose to deal with a highly-qualified commercial loan specialist because they ultimately realize that perhaps it is better to use the “best” business loan advisor rather than the “cheapest” business loan advisor.

The most typical range for commercial loan retainer fees is $2500 to $10,000 (obviously a wide range). There are various reasons for a retainer fee and here are three of them: (1) to compensate the advisor for some of the initial loan processing; (2) to serve as a “good faith” deposit toward the overall commercial financing fees; and (3) to focus the borrower on working with one business loan advisor. The third reason might be the most important of all. With difficult commercial loans, it is extremely counterproductive for a commercial borrower to be working with multiple business loan advisors (regarding the same loan). Once a retainer fee has been paid, a commercial borrower is likely to be more comfortable in working solely with the business loan advisor who received the retainer fee, and with difficult commercial loans, this unified approach is likely to be more successful. It is this success that ultimately justifies the retainer fee.