My niece Martha is looking into real estate investing as a new career and has been cautiously studying all the aspects related to it. Over a weekend dinner at her Grove Street apartment in Jersey City, she wanted to pick my brain about everything she could think up and it took me down memory lane.
I recounted the mistakes I made as a rookie investor and discussed deals done right over the years of my professional career. What I realized during our conversation was that even after all these years, the initial worries about getting started in real estate investing have not changed much—finding potential leads, pursuing the right deals, and of course, financing.
Being from a sales background, Martha has got a hang of the first two. What bothered her was the financing part of investing, and rightly so. So, I took Martha on a deep dive into the ins and outs of local hard money lenders real estate loan options and how they fit into her investment goals. Based on how suitable these terms are for new and seasoned investors, here are the recommendations I shared with her about some of the top NJ hard money lenders.
Hard Money Real Estate Loans in NJ: Finding Terms That Suit Your Investment Goals
For those new to real estate investing, like Martha, it is good to know that hard money lenders understand the challenges in our industry and generally try to meet our needs. Yet, it never hurts to know each lender’s terms well before approaching one for your investment deals. Following is my take on how the different terms offered by hard money real estate loans in NJ work best depending on your experience:
Residential Capital Partners (ResCap)
ResCap offers fix-and-flip loans anywhere between $80,000 and $1,500,000 for single-family homes at a fixed rate of 10 percent. They fund 100 percent of the purchase and repair costs up to 70 percent of ARV for seasoned investors and 65 percent of ARV for new investors. Unlike some other lenders, they do not charge interest on repair funds until they are drawn.
My take: The best part about ResCap loans is their “no money down” policy which means as a new investor you are looking at 100 percent financing of your deal. The very limited loan term of 9 months might look tight but then ResCap limits new investors to one rehab project at a time with low to moderate repairs. For experienced real estate investors, they are open to applications for heavy rehab loans and can fund more than one rehab project at a time to build your business even faster.
You can apply for a loan amount as little as $50,000 to a significant $2 million for investing in fix-and-flip homes. A new real estate investor applying for an RCN loan should have completed up to 2 fix-and-flips in the last 3 years. To experienced investors, RCN loans up to 85 percent of the purchase price, and 100 percent of renovation costs with a loan to value (LTV) not exceeding 75 percent of the after repair value (ARV). The loan term is of 12 months with a potential extension period of 6 months.
My take: I usually recommend RCN loans to investors who are way ahead on their real estate investing journey and have a solid portfolio of prior rehabbed properties. The lower interest rate starting at 8.75 percent is charged only on the outstanding balance, not on the rehab holdback. Though it is not a fixed rate, it works well for experienced investors who know how to quickly get the rehab work done. You do not get penalized for prepayment of the loan amount. I also appreciate that they do not charge any upfront fee such as an application fee during the pre-approval and approval process.
Sherman Bridge Lending
Sherman Bridge lends anywhere between $80,000 to $4,000,000 for single-family residences. The fix-and-flip loans have a 12-months term with an option to extend the term if required. The loan amount would be up to 75 percent of the ARV but not exceeding up to 90 percent of the purchase price plus up to 90 percent of the cost of repairs. The fix-and-flip loans fund easy fixer-uppers as well as complete teardowns. Availability of a minimum of $30,000 is one of the criteria to qualify for these loans. So, new real estate investors should be prepared to have some skin in the game.
My take: One thing that I particularly like about Sherman Bridge is that they order all inspections including appraisal, survey, and home inspection. So, investors need not worry about preparing such reports. Also, it helps in fine-tuning their own estimates about repair and upside potential. Sherman Bridge also offers a 36-month rental loan program for seasoned investors looking for a buy-and-hold.
Finance of America
For a loan amount as low as $50,000 to a maximum of $1 million, Finance of America offers a 12-months standard term. They have a really low-interest rate starting at 6.75 percent, depending on loan level pricing adjustment. Loans fund standard rehabs up to 70 percent and extensive rehabs up to 65 percent of ARV.
My take: This loan is best for an experienced investor because a minimum of 3 years of experience in real estate investing is required even to qualify. The term that interests me the most is that 100 percent of the rehab budget gets covered by the loan amount, given that the budget does not exceed 90 percent of the loan-to-cost (LTC) and 85 percent of acquisition costs. This is definitely a happy situation for an investor as it means bringing no more additional funds to the table.
After listening to my recommendations about some of the top NJ hard money lenders, Martha asked me about the tiresome process of completing loan applications for individual lenders and the agonizing waiting period before the approval. So, I shared with her a pro tip that makes the entire application process hassle-free.
Getting Best Terms From NJ Hard Money Lenders
Getting competitive lending terms from hard money lenders seems like a dream to any new or even seasoned investors. That’s why joining the nationwide network of independently owned and operated HomeVestors® franchisees was one of the best decisions I made to finance my deals.
The lending portal in HomeVestors®’ proprietary lead management software UGVilleSM connects me to some of the best hard money lenders in NJ. By just entering information about my property on my iPad, I receive hard money loan offers with some of the best terms for my investment deal, often within minutes. It’s not so much that I’m applying for a loan, it’s that these lenders are competing for my business.
Let the HomeVestors® franchise network help you fund more deals. Call HomeVestors® today to see some of the best hard money lenders in NJ compete for your business too.
Each franchise office is independently owned and operated.