Private hard money lenders are in the business of providing loans and loan services to people who require hard money loans (loans collateralized by real estate.) Private hard money lenders may be direct hard money lenders or brokers of hard money loans. Most private hard money lenders are, in actuality, brokers. Some private hard money lenders are both brokers and direct lenders. In these cases, the private hard money lender generally funds one or up to a few small loans per year and serves in the broker capacity to clients for the loans they help to originate.
Deciding on whether to work with a hard money broker or a private hard money lender is similar to deciding on whether to purchase real estate with the assistance of a broker / agent or whether to make an offer or direct to the seller on your own.
The advantages of working directly with a true private hard money lender are immediately evident: You may sometimes save money by going direct. Brokers are paid for their services via a percentage of the points you pay on a hard money loan. Therefore, the more brokers involved in a deal, the more you are likely to pay in both points and percentage to accommodate that cost.
If you have selected a direct hard money lender who is a good match for your project, you will be able to speak directly with the decision makers, avoiding the 'run around' that so many hard money borrowers fall prey to. You are told that your loan is going through, only to hear the next day that the lender has elected not to take on your hard money loan and now your loan is on another desk in yet another direct lender's office – or worse, on the desk of another broker who may know a broker who knows a lender who may want to fund your loan. Sometimes, the choice of direct lender is based more on the commission the broker will get than on your best interests.
By working with a direct hard money lender, you can avoid the 'run-around' and may be able to close more quickly. After all, no one knows your situation like you do, no one can explain any extenuating circumstances better than you can, and no one is as committed to your business and your hard money loan as you are.
The advantage of working with a commercial mortgage broker is also clear: a seasoned, well-informed, honest commercial mortgage broker who will have the knowledge of and access to the direct hard money lenders in Ontario, Canada, and the United States. A commercial mortgage broker will know where your loan has the best fit. A good commercial mortgage broker will help you 'package' your loan to your best advantage, helping you determine how much to expect based on the equity in your property, type of property you are collateralizing, how soon you need to close the deal, and more.
A good commercial mortgage broker will be able to assist you through the lengthy application process and submit your loan request to the best direct lenders for your situation. More often than not, working with a commercial mortgage broker will save time. By representing you and presenting your loan request to the best direct lenders, it often makes the transaction run more smoothly than if you were to take on this task yourself. This often saves you time and trouble in the long run and be well worth the cost of using a mortgage broker.