One Thing Banks Do Want to Finance – Owner-Occupied Commercial Real Estate
As bad as the economy is and even though the slow climb out of the recession is probably going to cause more small businesses to fail, one particular item that banks are still willing to finance is owner-occupied commercial real estate. Most other types of credit for small businesses – working capital being a prime example – have become very difficult to get. But for businesses that might be doing well enough to qualify for financing and are currently renting their space, this is one of the best times in a very long time to buy a building.
The commercial real estate crash, with overall commercial real estate prices down almost 40% below their peak in 2007, has created a large supply of buildings at prices lower than have been seen in recent memory. To a bank, a building occupied by a business owner is about as good a risk as can be found in today’s economy. Then add to that the fact that even though there may be a little more downside left in prices, there is much more upside potential as the economy continues to pull out of the recession. So add together an unusually large supply of buildings, and banks aggressively competing for this type of business, and a business owner has a real opportunity at this time to acquire space to grow their business.
Making it even more attractive for banks that are comfortable with SBA lending is the fact that banks can get 75% of their loans guaranteed, so SBA loans become even more attractive as a means to accomplish a building purchase. And for the potential business owner-borrower, the fact that SBA allows a 25-year amortization on commercial real estate usually means lower monthly payments on loans that also cannot be called. So for small business owners needing expansion, this is a very unique opportunity in recent economic history.