I am going to teach you a quick and easy way to get pictures taken of a commercial property that is more than 200 miles away - far beyond driving distance.
Today's training article was inspired by a real life commercial loan request on C-Loans.com. The mortgage broker had a very do-able commercial mortgage deal in his hands. It was a 44-unit office complex in Ohio, and the property was 100% occupied. He was only looking for a $3.1MM permanent loan. Just $3.1MM - wow! This commercial loan request should have been a slam-dunk deal and a cool $31,000 commission to the mortgage broker.
The deal was turned down by over 30 different lenders. Huh?
Yup. And do you know why? The mortgage broker attached the most butt-ugly picture I have ever seen on any C-Loans app. Why was it ugly? Let me count the ways:
- The picture was horribly out of focus. By the way, the picture above is NOT of the butt-ugly property, even though this picture is a little depressing. Compared to the subject, however, the above office building is a supermodel.
- The resolution was really low. The picture looked liked a thumbnail that had been blown up 60 times.
- The picture was taken on a dreary, overcast day. Guys, blue sky sells. Always make sure your property pictures are taken on a bright, shiny day with a beautiful blue sky.
Now this mortgage broker was not an idiot. He had very competently completed his C-Loans app. I'm sure he realized that his picture was atrocious. His problem was that he was located in Michigan, and the property was located in Ohio - a six-hour drive away. I'm sure this mortgage broker asked the borrower for better pictures, but the borrower just didn't appreciate the importance of the picture.
A good argument can be made that the single most important document in a commercial loan package is the picture(s) - even more important than the Pro Forma Operating Statement.
So what could this broker have done? He should have hired a nearby real estate broker to take the pictures for $50 or so. Here is how you do it:
- Go to Google Maps - http://maps.google.com
- In the Search Google Maps field, insert the address of the property.
- In many cases, Google has a nice front view of the property that you can download and use.
- If not, click the Nearby button and a search field will appear. Type in "Real Estate Broker". There will usually be few within a five-minute radius.
- Call the real estate office and offer one of the salesmen $25 to $50 to take a few pictures and send them to you by email.
Yikes. I'm a crazy cat lady. We've got six of them.
Do you have a mortgage or real estate website? We once paid a guy named Alan Dunn a referral fee of $21,250 for placing a Commercial Mortgages link on his website.
Keep looking for the contact information of a banker making commercial real estate loans.
Got a commercial loan that deserves a loan from either a life company, commercial bank, or conduit?
Do you need a lender who will allow the seller to carry back a second mortgage? Does your client have a balloon payment coming due on his commercial property? Has your bank offered him a discounted pay-off? Does your borrower have less-than-stellar credit? Is your client's company losing money? Is your borrower a foreign national? Do you need a non-recourse loan? Do you need a commercial loan with no prepayment penalty? Is your client's commercial property partially vacant? Do all of your commercial leases run out in the next 18 months? Do you need a lender who will allow a negative cash flow? Do you need a lender who will also look at the borrower's global income - income from salaries, other investments, etc.?
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