Business

Commercial Loans vs. Residential Loans

The differences between commercial and residential loans may seem cut-and-dry, but they’re not always obvious. Determining which type of loan you require can be confusing at times, and being prepared before you speak with a lender may save you some time.

Residential mortgage loans are intended for properties that have one to four family units. Anything above that, or a property intended solely for business (not a dwelling), falls under a commercial loan.

When you require a residential loan, your personal income, debt and ability to repay a loan are reviewed before you’re approved for a mortgage. If you need a commercial loan, the property itself is evaluated for past income and expenses. This usually requires a few years of historical figures. Your lender will want to see the income that can be generated from the building, compared to what will be owed.

It is important to note that if you’re interested in obtaining a residential loan, and wish to put it under the name of a limited liability company (LLC), you may not be able to. Lenders are under strict guidelines as to which type of loan they’re able to offer an LLC. There may be an opportunity to transfer at a later time, but you would need to consult your attorney or lender.

If you’re looking for a hard money loan in Atlanta, we may be able to help you.

Call us at 404-814-1644 or contact us online to find out whether you might qualify for this type of funding. In the meantime, check to ensure that you meet our loan criteria. Our loan amounts can be up to 65 percent of the after-repaired value of the collateral—and if you use the loan for renovation or construction, the loan amount […]

Should You Hire a Property Manager?

There’s no denying that real estate investing can be profitable (if you’re good at it), but there’s usually a lot of blood, sweat and tears involved. If renting homes is your thing, but you find that you’re just not into unclogging toilets, or don’t have the knack for finding the perfect tenants, should you throw in the towel? If so, you may want to consider hiring a property management company.

If you’ve invested in multiple properties or are just simply making enough money (that’s the goal, right?), hiring a company to take some tasks off your plate may give you some time to look into future investments. So, how do you find the perfect property manager? Here are some questions you can ask them:

What are your fees? Do you charge a monthly rate and are there additional fees for things like finding tenants?

Some companies will charge a flat monthly fee even if your property is left vacant. Others, get paid a percentage of the rent collected.

Are you licensed and insured?

You’ll want to make sure the company is licensed and insured in case of legal or liability issues.

How do you vet prospective tenants?

Make sure their requirements include background and credit checks, as well as payment histories, so you don’t end up with tenants who don’t pay.

What is the best way a tenant can reach you?

Having an accessible property management company is necessary for a healthy relationship with tenants. They’ll need to know they can reach out when issues arise.

How can I end our contract?

If you find that your management company is not working out properly, you should be able to move on. Read the contract thoroughly before signing to make sure […]

  • Evicting a Tenant From a Real Estate Investment Property
    Permalink Gallery

    Evicting a Tenant When You’re Renting an Investment Property

Evicting a Tenant When You’re Renting an Investment Property

Evicting a tenant is not something a landlord looks forward to. If you’re like most real estate investors, you’re going to be faced with the decision to evict a tenant at some point in your career.

Let’s face it: eviction is a hardship for both parties, but unfortunately, it can be something that needs to happen so you can continue running your business.
Georgia Laws on Eviction for REIs
Each state has its own laws regarding the eviction process. Because we’re in Georgia, we’ll focus on the dispossessory proceedings of the Georgia rental code.

You’ll find that Georgia is not greatly restrictive with eviction laws, and there’s not much of a timeline to follow.

If your tenant is late with his or her rent, you can provide the tenant with a demand for possession as early as the day after their rent is due. This notice does not have to be written, but for most people, it’s best to communicate with tenants in writing.
How Long Do You Need to Wait for Payment?
There’s also no requirement for how long you’ll need to wait to get your rental payment, or for the tenant to move out, before you file for an eviction hearing. You’ll want to be fair to your tenant, but you could file for an eviction lawsuit as soon as you feel it’s necessary.

After the request for eviction lawsuit is filed with the court, you’ll need to wait on an order from a judge to evict your tenant.

The order for possession will allow the tenant seven days to move or pay.

If the tenant pays, you must accept his or her payment.
Do You Need Hard Money for an Investment Property in Atlanta?
If you’re looking for a hard money loan in […]

How to Find a Great Atlanta Contractor

Flipping a house isn’t a one-person job, and that means you need a great team in place.

But when it comes to Atlanta contractors, how do you know you’re getting the best of the best?
How to Find a Good Atlanta Contractor
If you’re hiring an Atlanta contractor, start asking for recommendations from family and friends. You can (and should) even ask your hard money lender in Atlanta for a few contacts.

Once you’ve narrowed down your list to a few good contractors, start conducting phone interviews. Call and ask:

Do you do projects of this scope?
May I have a list of your previous clients?
How many other projects are you working on right now?
How long have you been working with your current subcontractors?

After you get warm-fuzzy feelings about one or two Atlanta contractors, have a face-to-face meeting.

The right contractor won’t mind answering your questions and making you feel comfortable. However, just because a contractor is nice and has all the right answers, that doesn’t mean he or she is right for the job; you’ll still need to check with the Better Business Bureau and the Georgia consumer protection agency to make sure.

Call the contractor’s past clients and find out how things went; ask if they mind sharing the finished project with you.

Once that’s done, it’s time to make plans and ask for bids. Ask for a complete breakdown, which includes:

Cost of materials
Cost of labor
Profit margins
Other expenses

Good contractors will want to see a complete set of blueprints and an explanation of what you want to see happen.

Don’t rely just on price. If you get a “lowball” bid, you may want to throw it out; that contractor may cut corners to try to […]

Flip a House in Atlanta: Is it as Easy as it Looks on TV?

Is flipping a house as easy as it looks on TV?

No.

But it’s extremely rewarding… and if you play your cards right (read: you’re smart about it), you can turn a great profit when you flip a house in Atlanta.
Flipping a House on TV vs. Flipping a House in the Real World
Sure, flipping houses on television looks fast and easy. You buy the house, fix it up, and buyers will be lined up at the front door waiting to hand you stacks of cash.

Right?

Not exactly.

If you want to flip a house in Atlanta, you have to be prepared.
How to Flip a House in Atlanta
Before you can buy a house, you’ll probably need funding. That’s where a hard money lender in Atlanta comes in. We can help you get the cash you need quickly so you can pounce on a great deal when you find it.

But there’s more to it than that.

You need a team of professionals who can help you do amazing work; you can’t be a “lone wolf” in real estate investing. Your team should include:

Specialty contractors, such as plumbers, roofers, and others
A real estate professional
A home inspector
A reliable hard money lender located in Atlanta
An attorney

You also need to do more than the bare minimum to get buyers to fall in love with a house. Flipping a house in Atlanta is hard, time-consuming work; you need to put in the right fixtures, make sure the floors are up to par (and there isn’t any asbestos or horrible popcorn ceilings in place), and ensure that everything is working better than it did when it was new.
Are You Flipping a House in Atlanta?
If you want to flip a house in Atlanta or […]

  • Environmental Reports in Real Estate - Atlanta Hard Money Lender
    Permalink Gallery

    What is an Environmental Report in Commercial Real Estate (And Do You Need One)?

What is an Environmental Report in Commercial Real Estate (And Do You Need One)?

Many traditional and hard money lenders in Atlanta require an environmental report before they’ll grant someone a commercial loan. The report should show that the property has been examined for environmental contamination. Even if there’s no lender requirement, though it may be a good idea to obtain one anyway, just for your own peace of mind — and for your future buyers’ peace of mind.
What is an Environmental Report?
An environmental report is an investigation on commercial property to discover if there are any dangerous contaminants. Potential buyers assume the cost of the investigation and it is completed in one or two phases.
Phase I Environmental Report
This is the initial investigation to test for dangerous contaminants. Investigators will research past tenants and prior uses of the property to determine suspicion of contaminant use. In addition, they’ll look for evidence of pollution by examining the adjacent land. If there is indication of contamination; phase II will be initiated. The cost for this report is around $3,000.
Phase II Environmental Report
After contamination is suspected, investigators will conduct a more thorough investigation. If necessary, tests such as soil, groundwater and air analysis will take place. The cost for this report can vary depending on the property and the situation.
What Does This Mean for You and a Lender?
If you’ve purchased contaminated commercial property, you will be on the hook for any clean-up costs regardless if you caused the contamination or not. A lender could be on the line in the event of a foreclosure; making this a risky deal. You won’t always be denied a loan; however, it may be a good idea to search for something else.
Do You Need a Hard Money Lender in Atlanta?
If you’re looking for a hard […]

Finding Turn-Key Homes in a Seller’s Market

With TV shows boosting the popularity of house-flipping as a business, people who ordinarily wouldn’t have ventured into real estate investment territory are jumping on the bandwagon.

But if you’ve been in the business for a while, you know this isn’t a get-rich-quick scenario. You know that you still need to find the best deals, but the market is getting crowded with investors who aren’t… well, aren’t as invested as you are.

So what do you do?
Finding Turn-Key Homes in a Seller’s Market
Like most real estate investors, you may find that Atlanta flips are hard to come by. Asking prices for homes are often too high to show you a return on investment.

When it’s a seller’s market, it’s time to get creative.

Start here:

Don’t rely solely on the MLS. Foreclosures and homes with low asking prices go quickly.
Go grassroots by knocking on doors, finding “for sale by owner” homes, and searching for pre-foreclosures.
Expand your territory — look for homes that are just off the beaten path.
Shift focus to quantity rather high-value returns; don’t turn up your nose at smaller profits.
Team up with an experienced real estate professional who has an extensive contact list.

Do You Need a Hard Money Lender in Atlanta?
If you’re looking for a hard money loan in Atlanta, we may be able to help you.

Call us at 404-814-1644 or contact us online to find out whether you might qualify for this type of funding. In the meantime, check to ensure that you meet our loan criteria. Our loan amounts can be up to 65 percent of the after-repaired value of the collateral—and if you use the loan for renovation or construction, the loan amount can be based on the collateral’s improved value.

Read our frequently […]

What is Virtual Wholesaling?

Have you heard of virtual wholesaling? If you’re like most people, you probably haven’t. Virtual wholesaling is essentially buying and selling homes or commercial buildings without having to be there. Most of the time, this is done electronically, and the transactions take place without ever seeing the property in person. The home or building is then turned around and sold quickly to an end buyer.
Advantages to Wholesaling Property
Virtual wholesaling has some advantages such as expanding your reach. If the area surrounding your physical location is short on investment properties, you can branch out. You don’t even have to leave your home or office to make a purchase… although it is a good idea to make at least one trip to see it with your own eyes.

With the ability to buy and sell electronically, it may be worth it to have a few people on your team who are close to the property, and can assess the situation. Having connections with real estate agents or contractors can help you succeed in a new territory.
Disadvantages to Wholesaling Property
If you don’t have eyes in the field—it will be tough to estimate the cost of rehab. You’ll just be looking at photos and videos, and won’t have an actual feel for what needs to be done. This can affect your overall sale and it may cost you in the long run.

Because virtual wholesaling is basically selling your contract (the offer you made on the property), you may need to have some transactional funding to cover the time it takes for the end buyer to wrap things up. It is still your property until the deal closes.
Do You Need a Hard Money Loan in Atlanta?
If you’re looking for a hard […]

Energy-Efficient Commercial Buildings

If your real estate niche is investing in commercial buildings, be sure to check out the federal tax incentives offered for energy efficiency upgrades. Since commercial buildings release the most carbon emissions and are the world’s largest energy consumers, the government is looking for ways to entice building owners and designers into going green.
Commercial Building Tax Deduction
You may be eligible for a deduction of up to $1.80 per square foot if you reduce your building’s total energy usage by at least 50%. You can qualify for this deduction by replacing your building’s boiler or furnace with a new heating and cooling system; installing energy efficient interior lighting technology; or doing things like adding insulation or replacing windows. Even though this offer is set to expire (it must be installed by December 31, 2016), this type of credit is typically extended.

If you haven’t yet decreased your total energy usage by 50%, you still may be able to take advantage of partial deductions of up to $0.60 per square foot. You’ll need to implement and meet energy saving goals throughout the year.
Solar Investment Tax Credit
A 30% tax credit is available if you install rooftop or utility-scale solar energy systems. The Solar Investment Tax Credit has been extended to last until 2023. After that, the tax credit will go down to 10%.
Do You Need a Hard Money Loan in Atlanta?
If you’re looking for a hard money loan in Atlanta, we may be able to help you.

Call us at 404-814-1644 or contact us online to find out whether you might qualify for this type of funding. In the meantime, check to ensure that you meet our loan criteria. Our loan amounts can be up to 65 percent of the after-repaired value of […]

The Hidden Costs of Flipping a House

If you’re like most people flipping a home, you’re probably seeing dollar signs. You’ve most likely purchased a house at a great price and are thinking of the after repair value. With quick turnaround times on flipped homes, it’s easy to forget about a few things.
The Hidden Costs of Flipping a House in Atlanta
While the costs of repairs are usually at the forefront of your expenditures, you’ll want to be sure that all the hidden costs you may incur are calculated before estimating a profit.
Commissions
Most real estate investors plan to fix and flip more than one house in their career, so it would be a good idea to form an alliance with a Realtor®. A realtor can help you sell your flips quickly—allowing you to move on to the next one. Of course—they will charge you for it—so don’t forget to calculate realtor commissions into your expenses.

Property Insurance and Taxes
As a borrower, you’re required to insure your property. You’ll have to provide proof that you carry insurance on the property prior to closing on the loan. Even if you think the home is in a state of disrepair at the moment—anything can happen.
Do You Need a Hard Money Loan in Atlanta?
If you’re looking for a hard money loan in Atlanta, we may be able to help you.

Call us at 404-814-1644 or contact us online to find out whether you might qualify for this type of funding. In the meantime, check to ensure that you meet our loan criteria. Our loan amounts can be up to 65 percent of the after-repaired value of the collateral—and if you use the loan for renovation or construction, the loan amount can be based on the collateral’s improved value.

Read our frequently asked questions and […]