Friday, June 18, 2010

New Loan and A Sign Of The Times

As I mentioned last week, I had two loans get paid off recently. A third loan, hard money loan #8, was just paid off yesterday. This loan was somewhat unusual in that it was actually carried to the full 1 year term. I don't have any information on if the property sold or if the borrower just refinanced to pay us off and he still is working on or trying to sell the place.

So, with the exception of one loan through my self-directed IRA, my money is all just sitting around and not earning any interest right now. Or I should say, was just sitting around. Just got details of a new offer yesterday that I will invest roughly a third of my funds in. The borrower is a referral to my partner from a mutual friend. The guy knows what he is doing and rehabs houses for a living. He is also a member of CCIM, an institute of commercial and investment real estate professionals. The property is a single family home in Oakland, California that was purchased at a foreclosure auction. The property was purchased for about $265,000 and our mortgage will be for $198,000, giving us a LTV of 75%, based on the purchase price. The current value is approximately $323,000, so the LTV with that figure is about 61%. Loan is standard terms, with a slightly lower interest rate: 9%, interest only, 1 year term. I'll call this one hard money loan #14.Here's a picture of the property:

Not too pretty, but that's what foreclosure investing is all about.

I'm starting to see many indications that the real estate market is turning around. First, obviously, are the three loans I had close in two weeks. Those were sales in California. But even closer to my home here in the Phoenix area, I am seeing signs of a turnaround - literally. I passed this sign on the way home yesterday:

Note the "We're back!" line. This particular tract has been sitting vacant for two years. This sign was taken down two years ago and has just now been put back up. (The "immediate move-in" is something of a lie as there are no houses built yet.) On other empty lots around town, I am starting to see signs advertising new stores that will be built and should be open in a year or less. Perhaps the worst of the real estate mess is behind us now.

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