A number of books talk about using owner financing when buying apartment buildings. Is this something that actually happens very frequently? It seems like most owners would want the cash. I can imagine some being ok with partial owner financing. I was thinking it would be great to get some help with that 20% down payment needed with the commercial lenders via partial owner financing. However, the commercial lenders I have spoken with have not been supportive of partial owner financing. Has anyone found commercial lenders that have been supportive of using owner financing for part of that 20% down payment?
@Gabriel Miller finding a good apartment deal is like finding a needle in a haystack. Finding a good apartment deal where the seller is willing to owner finance (and isn’t getting offers at just as good a price without it) is like finding a needle in a stack of needles. There’s one out there somewhere, but you could spend a lifetime looking for it. A few people get lucky and find one, and it’s such a unicorn that they all write books about it which leads people to believe that it happens all the time.
In my opinion you’re most likely to find owner financing when the property is overpriced, in a bad neighborhood or in a bad economic area, in remote locations where there are few buyers, or have severe physical deficiencies.
In a separate category are the instances where the seller is willing to carry back a portion of the purchase price, such as 10-15%. You’ll find more sellers willing to do this than carry all of the financing, but still only a relatively small percentage of sellers in today’s market unless the factors in the above paragraph apply.
I bought my first multifamily property this way—75% or 80% from a local bank (its been so long I can’t remember), 10% from the seller and 10-15% from me in a 1031 exchange.
But that was a long time ago. Nowadays lenders are more pessimistic about allowing secondary financing which makes the whole idea a non-starter. I suspect that there are lenders out there that will allow it, you just need to find them. Back to the needle in the haystack again...call every lender you can find until you find one that gives you the answer you are looking for. I’d start with local and regional banks.
I have done seller carry backs and contract for deeds many times and find that there are many sellers willing to do it. Brian is right - finding deals right now is like finding a needle in a haystack, but I would say the seller financing is not as hard to get as most people will tell you. Most people don't ask and therefore, don't get seller financing or any kind.
For the banks - most will want at least 10% down from you and still a 1.2 DSCR with their loan and the seller carry back. Many banks may not even allow that.