Owner financed deals: Where to find them?

21 Replies

I own two properties financed through two personal mortgages overt he past 2 years. I'm now thinking about my third investment, but don't want to make much of a down payment for it. Instead, I think that an owner financed deal would be great. The only thing is: Where to find such opportunities? Is there any database where owners interested in financing would list their property?

Thanks in advance for your insights!

I don't know of any databases that have owner financing deals available @Alain Chautard . I think you just have to include that with your offer with sellers until you find the ones that are interested in holding paper on a deal for you. Good luck! 

Check with a local agent to see if owner financing is a database field in your MLS. It is in ours. It is very usual to find a seller who would be willing to seller finance with a low down payment though. Usually in order to get that privilege you need to put down a heafty down payment.

@Alian Chautard  One great way to find  owner financing is to call all sellers that are trying to sell their home “for sale by owner” you would be surprised what you can find out there. you might get some seller financing through subject to the existing loan lease-option there’s any number of ways to get owner financing. There’s a couple to get you started. It would definitely have to be a motivated seller that’s in some kind of situation where you could come in and take over the payments for instants anyway that’s a couple good ways. It’s not easy but Definitely possible good luck.

@Alain Chautard   Agree with Patti's comments above, typically 10-20% down is what I've done for buying owner financed deals.  Anything less than that usually doesn't spark much interest.  

Some people say offer less down and more than asking price, but personally I would never pay over asking.  Just because owner financing is offered, it's only one component of the investment.  Numbers have to make sense.

Good luck!

- Tom

@Alain Chautard   I've had the good luck asking the owner to carry a small second mortgage, say for 15% of the purchase price.  The bank then lends 80%, so I'm in for only 5% down on an investment property.

The key: fund the 20% down first (typically from my 401k), close on the property, then have the seller execute the 2nd mortgage that basically "reimburses me" 15% out of the 20% I put down.  I then repay my 401k, and usually it's only a $75 admin fee to borrow like that.

Still depends on many factors, the bank and our relationship (small banks that portfolio lend and I keep my deposit accounts there) and the banks approval to allow a 2nd mortgage, credit, and the deal all came into play, for me least.

@Tom S. That's creative, I like it ;-) My take is that in order to get low down payments, using a combination of different financing tricks seems to always be helpful. There isn't one single strategy, but rather a range of options that, when combined together, can work like magic.

@Alain Chautard Look for properties on Craigslist or zillow fsbo . Give them two offers . One with a land contract at market prIce and one with a lowball cash offer . Another great tip is call ‘for rent’ signs at potential properties and ask the owner if he is interested in selling instead of renting . I’ve had many reply back . There’s so many baby boomers retiring from landlording they are burnt out and willing to negotiate but most unsophisticated people never snoop around they are lazy ..they just pay retail on the mls . It’s usually only a business minded person who will do land contracts / seller finance . Regular homeowners who don’t do business or invest are very reluctant to sell on terms . I would offer 10% down no balloons and extend out as long as they will agree to . It’s recorded and done through a RE lawyer . Not a handshake or verbal agreement .

@Alain Chautard - I am fortunate to be a HomeVestors franchisee and am able to borrow from them for no money out of pocket, fix it up (with their money), lease it up, then refi it with a local bank. I do have one owner financed home in my IRA that I paid nothing down to the seller but paid a wholesaler $8K to bring me a house that I paid $40K for - with 100% financing. Today's market is very, very competitive. We have more buyers than properties. Sellers have options, so it is harder to find those low money down, financed deals. Be patient, the market will eventually shift.

@Alain Chautard

No, there is no such list. These opportunities are not "found", they're created through negotiating with sellers.

And the best deals for owner financed are free and clear - no mortgages. Those you can find either by research or purchasing lists.

Another source are inherited properties or people going into retirement homes - anyone who wants a regular income stream and especially when trying to avoid paying taxes on huge income windfalls.

Good luck to you!

I'm in agreement to buy a 4plex off market with seller financing.  I sent out mailers to 4plex owners here in Las Vegas.  I pitched the idea to the owner and he was the ideal person to seller finance - owned 100%, no need for huge lump sum of cash, and super nice guy wanting to help out a beginner.  If you are good at selling property owners on the benefits (seller financing is win-win for both sides in my opinion), then you should offer up the idea every time you speak to a property owner who does not have a mortgage.  As for finding them - I can't imagine there's a direct strategy other than calling and asking.

I was looking at the numbers comparing return on equity verse interest earned on principal the other day. The scenario looked at cash flows over 10 years. I was having a hard time seeing what the advantage of seller financing would be for a seller if they owned the property free and clear, where they agreed to a fixed interest rate. 

When sellers hold paper do they ever give buyers 30 year ams with a fixed interest rate and no balloon?

Patti and Karen are spot on - follow their threads.

Out here, I troll around on my Harley and look for a massive pile of garbage, literally, and then I start delicately inquiring and investigating... I was inspired by Carlton Sheets, and there are many o the same ilk. Don’t discount their purpose; meant to inspire and dream and think out of the box. I was inspired, dreamed and thought out of the box — then WORKED-WORKED-WORKED. I’ve made a disgusting amount of money with TERMS/SELLER FINANCING. 

My mantra / game I play and tease people with when we discover an overpriced property is to ask: “What terms could you ask for that would make that price of his worthwhile?”

@Costa Deir

massive reduction in tax hit when selling
receives 6.5% interest rate for 30 years without any work
worst case scenario, I default --> he gets back property with my down payment and payments and can re-sell
nice check every month ($1,513 in my case)
can sell with no closing costs, agent fees, or lawyer fees (I covered these as our agreement)

no rules for down payment - for me, I'm only putting down like 8% on a multi family buy and hold
I get a cash flowing property with only $20k out of my pocket
no PMI if less than 20% down payment (this is huge help to cash flow)
**it may not count towards mortgage limit through the eyes of a lender**  --> not sure about this, I'll need to do some research to confirm.

@Richard -- you never know what a seller's interests are.  Mine wanted to retire and a $1,513 check every month is exactly what he wanted.  He knows the property and how it performs and knows that worst case scenario, he keeps all of my money and equity and gets the property back.