What is Seller Financing?

When a seller allows a buyer to make payments over time for the purchase of property, it is known as owner financing or seller financing.

This private financing by the seller can take the place of a bank loan or be in addition to a conventional mortgage.

The payment amount, interest rate, and other terms are agreed upon between the buyer and seller. The amount financed by the seller will depend upon the buyer’s down payment and whether there are any bank loans.

Here’s an example of how seller financing works…

  • A property owner advertises his or her house for sale, either on her own or through an agent.
  • A buyer makes an offer, and they agree upon a sales price of $175,000 with a 10 percent down payment of $17,500.
  • Rather than requiring the buyer to obtain a bank loan, the seller carries back the balance of $157,500 in the form of a note and mortgage. It could also be a note and deed of trust or a real estate contract, depending on the customary documents for that state.
  • The note spells out the terms of repayment. In this case they agree upon 8.5 percent interest at $1,211.04 per month based on a 360-month amortization. The seller doesn’t really want to wait a full 30 years for payments, so the note requires payment in full, known as a balloon payment, within seven years.
  • A title company or real estate attorney is used for the closing to be sure all parties are protected and the documents are in compliance with and state laws.

Bank Loan Vs Seller Financed Mortgage Notes

Because the buyer is making payments to the seller rather than an institutional lender, the legal arrangement is called a private mortgage, seller carry-back, installment sale, or owner financing.

The seller has the same mortgage rights as a bank, so if the buyer does not make payments, the seller can foreclose and take the property back.

When the seller prefers cash today rather than payments over time, the rights to future payments can be sold or assigned to a note investor on the secondary market.

Safe Seller Financing Tips

It’s a tough time to sell a house.

Hoping to stand out from the crowd, sellers are advertising “Owner Will Finance!”

Accepting payments over time provides buyers an alternative to bank financing. Of course sellers don’t want to trade a house that won’t sell for a buyer that won’t pay.

Before you agree to “Be the Bank” read these 7 Tips For Safe Seller Financing!

more “Safe Seller Financing Tips”

Sell Property Fast With Owner Financing

When a property isn’t selling most real estate agents are quick to suggest a reduction to the sales price. It is common to see the tag line “Price Reduced” added to for sale signs, listings and ads.

Rather than just reducing price…

consider offering owner financing to sell a property quickly!

In today’s real estate market obtaining a mortgage can be a large stumbling block to home ownership. In the midst of this sub prime mortgage meltdown it is difficult to obtain a loan, especially for anyone with less than A+ credit and a 20% down payment.

While there are many reduced priced properties for sale few are offering a solution to the financing challenges. By offering owner financing the seller can reduce marketing time and maximize price while providing the buyer an economical alternative to bank loans.

The buyer makes a down payment and the seller accepts payments over time from the buyer. In essence the seller becomes the bank and is able to collect interest on the balance financed at the agreed upon rate.

Rather than collect payments for 20 to 30 years most sellers will prefer a balloon payment provision that requires the buyer to refinance and payoff the seller in 3 to 5 years. The seller also has the option of selling all or part of the payments to a note investor for cash now.

Back in the 1980’s the use of owner financing increased when interest rates were in the teens and borrowers had troubles qualifying based on the high monthly payments. Seller financing is now offering a similar solution to the financing challenges caused by the mortgage crisis.

Offering owner financing can be a very effective way to reduce marketing times, provided a property is priced at fair market value using comparable sales. Simply add the words “Owner Will Finance” to the advertising and watch the inquiries increase.