How to Finance Your Property Development

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Investing in real estate development can be a lucrative method of putting your money to work. If you don’t have a lot of savings, you may need to look into financing options to get started. Property development finance is a broad phrase that includes many different types of lending, such as business loans, personal loans, and mortgages. Eligibility requirements vary greatly, but having a well-planned investment strategy might improve your chances of obtaining good terms.

According to industry organization UK Finance, its members lent a total of £40.5 billion on buy-to-let mortgages alone in 2018, an increase of 5.5% from last year. Navigating the realm of property development finance, on the other hand, may be difficult, with a tangle of jargon and numerous options to consider. In this article, we will explain the differences between bridging loans, buy-to-let mortgages, and buy-to-sell mortgages, allowing you to make an educated decision about how to finance your property development.

6 Different Ways to Finance Your Property Development – Which One is the Best?

There are five primary methods for financing property development:

  1. Property development finance: Property development finance includes specific loans for established property development enterprises as well as loans for extensive refurbishment. Acceptance and rates are determined by your track record in property development and the strength of your business strategy.
  2. Cash: Using your own money to purchase a home is one possibility. While this may not be possible for most people starting out in real estate development, it is something to think about in the future.
  3. Buy-to-sell mortgage: This form of financing is designed for people who wish to buy a home, remodel it, and resell it for a profit. Buy-to-sell mortgages allow you to sell the property immediately after purchasing it, which a regular mortgage does not allow. These mortgages, however, have higher interest rates, increased costs, and a need for significantly larger deposits.
  4. Bridging loans are short-term: Bridging loans are short-term, high-interest loans that are typically used to purchase a property, repair it, and then sell it. Bridging loans are secured against real estate or land and require a clear repayment plan at the conclusion of the period.
  5. Personal loan: Taking out an unsecured personal loan to fund minor renovations or enhancements for inherited property is one possibility.
  6. Buy-to-let Mortgage: This sort of mortgage is suitable for people who want to buy a home and rent it out. Buy-to-let mortgages feature greater deposit requirements, higher interest rates, and more fees than standard mortgages.

What is Property Development Finance?

Property development finance is a term that covers heavy refurbishment, change of use, or ground-up development loans. It is aimed at experienced real estate developers and involves the largest loan amounts. Most lenders will only accept applications from businesses, not individuals.

What are the Eligibility Criteria for Property Development Finance?

What are the prerequisites for obtaining development money, aside from a viable project? This is a difficult question to answer because each development finance lender has different lending parameters and policy requirements.

However, there are some general criteria that most lenders must follow to have a documented and established track record in property development as well as a clear business strategy to be eligible for property development loans. Lenders will assess your ability to achieve your objectives by assessing the effectiveness of previous initiatives and extensively studying your company strategy.

It is critical to remember that acceptance rates for property development funding are frequently low, and interest rates are determined by lenders on a case-by-case basis. It is vital to determine whether your needs may be met by another source of funding and to apply only if you have the necessary track record and skills for a large-scale redevelopment project.

What is Cash?

Cash is a financing option for real estate development that incorporates a variety of sources of funding. Property developers have access to a range of funding options through cash financing, including investor contributions, senior loans, advance payments, and hybrid financing, each of which can be customized to meet their unique needs. For developers who want a variety of financing options to finish their projects, it can be a desirable choice.

What are the eligibility criteria for Cash?

To be qualified for Cash financing, applicants must generally meet the following criteria:

  • Lenders will require a clear development plan, including estimated expenses and a completion timeline.
  • Lenders may demand candidates with past experience in property development to demonstrate that they are aware of the risks and hurdles that such ventures entail.
  • The borrower may be asked to contribute equity, which is a percentage of the total project cost paid in advance by the borrower.
  • Lenders frequently judge a borrower’s capacity to repay on their credit history.
  • The borrower may be required to provide security in the form of property or assets to secure the loan.

What is a buy-to-let Mortgage?

A buy-to-let mortgage is designed for persons who want to buy a home to rent out rather than live in. The majority of buy-to-let mortgages interest only. This means that the monthly payments will only pay down the interest, not the principal (the amount due on the mortgage). Instead, at the conclusion of the agreed-upon time, the capital will be paid off in full. Mortgages are often granted on an interest-only basis, which means that your monthly payments will go towards only the interest and not the principle of the loan. You must repay the loan amount at the conclusion of the loan period, either by selling the property or by carrying out another mortgage on it.

What is the eligibility criteria for Buy-to-let Mortgage?

To be eligible for a buy-to-let mortgage, you must own your home, have a good credit history, earn at least £25,000 per year, and be within the lender’s upper age limit. In addition, your rental revenue must be 25-30% larger than the average monthly repayment. Buy-to-let mortgages are classified into three types: tracker mortgages, discounted variable mortgages, and fixed-rate mortgages.

It is critical to plan for periods when you will not receive rent and to have a buffer to support your repayments during these times. Buy-to-let properties can generate a high income if the property is not over-leveraged and the cash flow renter is dependable. However, keep in mind that property prices can decrease as well as rise, and you may be unable to sell the house for more than you bought for it.

What is Buy-to-Sell Mortgage?

A buy-to-sell or flexible mortgage is required if you intend to acquire a home, remodel it, and resell it for a profit. Standard residential mortgages often feature hefty early repayment penalties and a six-month lock period. Buy-to-sell mortgages have two important advantages over regular mortgages: they have low or no redemption fees and there are no time constraints on selling the property. However, you will pay higher interest rates and associated fees than a normal residential mortgage and must contribute a larger deposit (at least 25%) to obtain these privileges.

What is the Eligibility Criteria for Buy-to-Sell Mortgage?

To determine your eligibility for a buy-to-sell mortgage, a lender considers the following criteria: your exit route plan for repaying the loan, the property’s ease of sale, your credit score, and your previous experience using a buy-to-sell mortgage to flip a property. Buy-to-sell mortgages are ideal for experienced property developers who have a solid business plan and know what they’re doing.

Typically, buy-to-sell borrowers purchase properties at auctions or properties below market value that are uninhabitable and require quick-win improvements to flip and sell for a profit. While the application process is similar to buying a new home, fewer lenders offer buy-to-sell mortgages, and you’ll pay more for the flexibility in the form of higher interest rates and a bigger deposit.

What are bridging loans?

Bridging loans are a form of short-term loan that can be used for a variety of purposes, but they are most commonly utilized by home buyers who wish to secure a new home before selling their current one. Bridging loans can be a valuable financial tool for property purchasers and developers, but it’s critical to have a clear strategy and exit plan in place to prevent becoming enslaved by high-interest debt. They are also popular among property developers wanting to buy and renovate residences, especially those that require considerable renovation work and are ineligible for buy-to-sell mortgages.

Bridging loans are not mortgages, and they can be categorized as closed or open. An open bridging loan doesn’t need an exit plan, but the interest rate is higher and the loan typically lasts a year.

What are the eligibility criteria for Bridging Loans?

A bridging loan application is straightforward, and you should obtain a decision within 24 hours. If you are approved, funds will typically be released within two weeks. However, bridging loans come with high-interest rates, and you’ll need to provide security, usually in the form of a property.

When applying for a bridging loan, lenders will consider factors such as the security property, proof of income, business plan, and property track record. Interest can be paid monthly or rolled up, and it’s important to make sure you can afford the high-interest rates before taking out a bridging loan.

What are Personal loans?

Personal loans are unsecured loans that can be used to cover a variety of needs, including home improvements. Depending on the lender, these loans typically run from £1,000 to £50,000 with repayment terms ranging from one to eight years.

Personal loans, unlike secured loans, do not require collateral such as a home or car as security. As a result, personal loan interest rates are often higher, and eligibility is mostly determined by your credit score and income.

What are the eligibility criteria for Personal Loans?

A solid credit score, which reflects your ability to repay debt, is required to be eligible for a personal loan. A consistent source of income also helps lenders believe that you will be able to make loan installments. Lenders may also check the electoral register to verify your identity, so make sure you’re on the voter registration list. Personal loans are available from most high-street banks, but you may need to be an existing customer to qualify for the best rates. As a result, before making a selection, it is necessary to investigate several lenders and their interest rates.


It is really important for you to undertake research and carefully analyze all of your options before committing to any property development funding option. Understanding your individual circumstances and growth objectives will help you choose the best financing option for your needs and reduce the risk of accruing debt you cannot afford to repay. Planning ahead of time, as well as being realistic about your budget and timetables, will aid in the avoidance of costly mistakes and the success of any development project.

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