Getting the Bank to Say Yes! An Interview with Greg Brister

by |

Greg BristerIn our interview with real estate investor, Greg Brister (13:38 minutes), we get into how to deal with your banker in order to get your loan closed. Learn what due diligence you need to do and how to prepare your documents before you walk in the door of the bank. Greg also walks us through all the preparation he goes through to get the bank to say yes and finance his deals. To supplement his interview, you can download his presentation containing all the paperwork discussed above –> Get Your Banker to Say Yes

Be sure to follow Greg on Twitter and visit his website

Finally, read and watch dozens of other real estate interviews from BiggerPockets today!

About Author

Joshua Dorkin

Joshua Dorkin is a serial entrepreneur, investor, podcaster, publisher, educator, and co-author of How to Invest in Real Estate. He started BiggerPockets to help democratize the real estate investing landscape for himself and others, aiming to make it accessible for everyone, regardless of income or education. Today, BiggerPockets is the premier real estate investing website online with over one million members and reaching over 70 million people with the message of financial freedom through real estate investing. Joshua, along with his wife and three daughters, make their home in Denver, Colorado, and spend any time they can traveling, exploring, and adventuring. Read more about Joshua’s story in 5280 and


  1. Great advice for a newbie! I am just starting out in real estate investing and wondered what documents would be pertinent information for a banker. I will put this advice to good use. Thanks!

  2. Great interview here Josh! Very insightful! A thoroughly organized business packet is the way to go to the bank, and have investment properties sealed or approved by them! Greg, you’re our man! Learned a lot of valuable things from this interview.

  3. I received some questions today from Shanequa Jones. I thought I would answer them here to keep the content in one spot.

    “You said in your interview that you include a purchase price agreement (real estate contract) in your folder. What happens if the bank says no?”

    If the bank says no, I want to know specifically why. What am I doing wrong and I’ll fix it?

    “Do they say no often?”

    The only no I ever received was on my first deal, I had to come in with more down payment to make it happen. After gaining experience, my proposals have been accepted by the bank.

    “Do you still have to pay the 20% downpayment?”

    Some of my deals have been as low as 10% down and some have been as high as 25%. I also have a few that I paid for all cash.

    “Do you qualify in your name or your business name?”

    I am personally liable for all of my notes at this stage in my business whether the property is in my name or the business name.

    “Do they ever mention your debt to income ratio?”

    I have a very favorable debt to income ratio. The figures are included in the financial statement.

    “Do you purchse with cash and then refi with them?”

    I have purchased and rehabbed a triplex in cash and cashed out after about a year of showing that the property performed as projected.

    ” I know it’s a lot of questions, but I am also depend upon banks to get properties and looking for as much information as possible. Great interview, by the way.”

    Good questions. Thank you for the kind words.

  4. Who cares what the bank will say? Most of the best ventures in real estate were done with out the bank,as a matter of fact bank participation guaranties a failure. About 1985 they were giving way toasters to get in to the real estate lending business in 1987 they got a share of the market in 1990 they brought the market to its knees. They did the same thing until 2006 and look at the results ( if you want me to go to the 70s and 60s not problem either).Stop giving them power (and your money)

    • Thanks for your comments Chris. It’s good to hear that you are doing so well. I’m not sure I did this interview for you. I did this for the people just starting out.

      I, personally, would not invest my money into a syndicate that only dealt with first time investors. Not many people would. The new people need to get funding from somewhere.

      I wish you well on your future business.

  5. I had a bank one time that wanted me to replace a new carpet in a 30 unit apartment building, after a MAJOR earthquake reinforcement rehab, because they had to have a”condition” of some kind. I told them to talk to me in a week when the “new” carpet will be installed, while I was thinking “I have to get way from their grip”……Well I syndicated the loan ($1,200,000), it cost me 10% less than the bank loan, it took the lawyers to draw the papers 2 days and 3 days to raise the money….it was 1987…I never used a bank since then…..

    • That’s great, Chris . . . not everyone has the knowledge to go and syndicate a deal from the beginning, though. Perhaps you can jump on our Syndication and other forum areas and can share more of your experiences for everyone to learn from! I’m looking forward to it.

  6. Joshua
    Thank you for you kind words.Don’t forget education and out of the box thinking is a MUST for everything…..I never took well to “this is the way we do it” in my mind was/is translating “we don’t want to do it”…..What I wrote sounds like a brave act yet at the time it was a VERY scary experience (it is always easier looking back from the end LOL). I did not mean to discount the value of information and your effort it is very valuable. I just think it is time for people in our industry to take control of our trade.In my opinion (only) the banks are in business because of us and not the other way around. I have no “beef”with them I just thought it will be useful to take a little bit of a different approach . Maybe people like you that are talented writers can start the movement. This is the time as there are many frustrated people out there that want to do business and they run in to the “bank” wall.

    • Chris, I am sure Josh would be open to doing a skype interview with you so you would have the opportunity to explain the process to us. I was just asking some more experienced investors how this worked just the other day. You sound very experienced an I would like to hear what you have to say about building a syndicated loan.

      Good luck.

    • Chris – We do everything in our power at BiggerPockets, to empower people by providing information from various viewpoints in order for them to help educate themselves. You can bring a horse to water – as the saying goes….. I am serious when I ask you to step in and get more involved. Given what I know about your knowledge so far, I think you could bring a lot to the already voluminous knowledge that we have on the site already. Regards!

      • Joshua here are some thoughts….I think this is the right time for departure from the “conventional”ways…..Banks are difficult to deal with (for “whatever” reason), savings are not encouraged by the current interest rates available, (half of the earnings go to taxes and the rest cannot catch up with inflation), people are timid investing in stocks and other financial instruments given the current Wall Street experience and in general there is allot of money out here looking for the right investment. In three months from now I will be able to report and share with you how feasible it is to raise this kind of capital (in actual current terms) as I’m in the process of purchasing property currently, off course since most of them are bank owned or short sales I (like most people) have to hear from the bank when they will decide to proceed LOL Now this is an other very interesting topic for discussion – what is the bank thinking and what is the benefit of moving soooooo slow in selling inventory that is costing them money- (like taxes ,maintenance etc) ….So far no one seems to know what is their motivation…

Leave A Reply

Pair a profile with your post!

Create a Free Account


Log In Here