Learn the Three Ratios That Are Used to Determine Commercial Lending
Getting money for your commercial project can be quite a challenge if you do not know how to analyze and present the property properly to a commercial real estate lender. Before presenting your property to a potential lender it is important to determine the most probable ratios that the lender is going to use in making a decision to lend you the money.
There is an increased risk with commercial real estate loans because of the size of the loans. Hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars are loaned on commercial properties and projects. A commercial lender wants to make sure that he or she will get their money back from the generated income of the property.
Most lenders will use the following three ratios to determine if they will loan the money on a project.
The first ratio is the debt coverage ratio or DCR. The DCR applies to the property itself and how much income it is producing compared to the debt service, or how much money is paid out towards the mortgage on a monthly basis. It is expressed by the net operating income divided by the total debt service.
The net operating income is the total income left over from the property after paying all the operating expenses. The debt service is determined by the mortgage terms, such as interest rate, length of the loan, and how often a payment is made. The higher the DCR, the more ability the property will have to cover the debt service. Many lenders require a DCR above 1.2 in order to consider it a relatively safe investment. Anything below that indicates that the property is either barely breaking even, or losing money. A lender does not want to loan money on a project that is not able to cover its debt service.
The second ratio is the loan-to-value ratio. This is expressed by the total loan balances (sum of all mortgages) divided by the market value. When you apply for a commercial loan, as you do for a residential loan, you must determine how much value of the property you are actually borrowing versus what will remain as equity. If you can acquire a loan-to-value ratio of 75%, then that is generally a good number.
If you can get more than 75% of the value loaned to you, then consider that a bonus. Lender’s rules and guidelines may differ greatly depending on how much they are willing to risk on the project.
The third ratio is the debt ratio. For smaller commercial projects commercial lenders may require that you submit personal information to back the loan. This includes your personal income and debt on a monthly basis. The debt ratio is expressed by dividing monthly housing expenses by gross monthly income.
The results show how much debt stands in relation to income. Many commercial lenders will not accept a debt ratio greater than 25%. However, some commercial lenders have been known to go up to 28% or even 36%. A debt ratio greater than 25% stands a good chance of having budget problems.
The lower debt ratio you have, the more likely you will be able to get funding for your smaller commercial project.
Before approaching any lender, it is really important to analyze these ratios on your own. They pertain to your specific deal for which you want to get financing. By performing the ratio analysis on your own, you can better determine if financing will be easy or difficult to obtain, depending on the nature of the project and its level of risk.
It may be a good idea to contact several potential lenders and ask them their basic criteria and guidelines that they follow in evaluating properties. You may find that some lenders are far more conservative than others.
By understanding your property, you can better fit a lender to your specific needs. Also remember that private lenders can be extremely helpful with those risky deals that public lenders will not even consider. Be sure that you are well equipped with the proper information and supporting documentation no matter what lender you approach.
'The attention to detail and professionalism that Troy and his staff brings to our contract drafting process is unmatched. It’s a rare occurrence to find a law firm that cares as much about your legal protection as you do. But, Doucet Co. LPA is that law firm."
Mr. Doucet and his staff handled two foreclosures and a related matter for me. I found everyone in his office to be professional, effective and responsive. Everything he handled for me got me the results I expected. I highly recommend Doucet Co., LPA.
As an attorney and former client of Doucet Co., LPA, I was very impressed with the representation of Troy Doucet and his firm. I would recommend him to all who face difficulty in saving their home or getting cooperation with their mortgage companies.
If you need legal assistance regarding foreclosure, I urge you to consider putting your complete trust in Doucet Gerling. They will employ their vast knowledge and expertise on your behalf and work to attain a great outcome for your individual needs and situation.
"Troy Doucet is one of the most gifted attorneys that we have ever had the pleasure of dealing with. He treated us with kindness and generosity. We were most impressed with his integrity and high sense of duty to us. If you are looking for an attorney to get the job done we highly recommend Troy Doucet. Our family can never thank him enough for getting our foreclosure problem solved."
My company has worked with multiple law firms in the past, but none have come close to matching the quality we are seeing from Doucet & Associates. If you want an attorney who has a deep understanding of both the legal system AND business, hire them – you won’t be disappointed.
"Mr. Doucet worked wonders in my case. He stood up for me when I felt overwhelmed and helpless and kept my credit rating and future intact. Thanks you so much for helping me and my family."
"My family and I would like to send a thank you with sincere gratitude for all the time, hard work, and long hours set a side daily to represent and speak on our behalf during a very challenging time in our life. Our success is a reflect of your commitment. Thank you Troy Doucet & law firm."