All You Need to Know About Private Lending

Are you considering lending money as a private lender or looking to borrow funds via a private loan? Private loans are often the most effective and efficient way for commercial real estate investors to access needed capital in order to expand their portfolios. As such, it’s critical that both lenders and borrowers have an understanding of all aspects of these transactions, from the various benefits to important financial considerations.  

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If you’re interested in private lending, you’ll have a better understanding of the following after this article: 

  • How does one become a private lender or build a private lending business? 
  • Is private lending profitable?  
  • What are the benefits and risks of private lending? 

If conventional banks can’t meet your financing requirements for a commercial real estate deal, read on to learn more about the following: 

  • Why you should think about utilizing a private lender. 
  • The risks involved with using a private money lender, as well as advantages. 
  • Differences and similarities between private money lending institutions, traditional banks, and credit unions. 
  • And how to identify money lenders who are perfect for you. 

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Curious about nonbank loans?

Type Description
Debt Service Coverage Ratio DSCR Loan Requirements (and everything else you need to know about DSCR loans) 
Bridge Loans The Insider’s Guide to Bridge Loans, an in-depth look at this crucial form of commercial real estate financing.
Hard Money Loans Dive into the world of hard money loans and discover the advantages of short-term financing for your commercial real estate projects.

What is Private Lending and How Does it Work? 

Simply put, private money lenders are non-institutional sources of financing. Individuals, a group of individuals, or financial organizations can act as private lenders. Borrowers can regularly get funding from private money lenders for various needs. They provide personal loans as well as loans for commercial real estate or mortgages. 

Securing a loan from a private lender is identical to that of an institutional lender. Your mortgage is funded by the lender, who also benefits from your interest payments. Similar to working with an institutional lender, a private lender will want to look over your financial status and ability to repay the loan. 

State laws govern banks and credit unions. Private lending is also subject to rules, though they are less stringent than those that apply to traditional lenders. 

Hard money loans are not secured by the borrower’s credit or financial situation, but rather by the asset they are linked to. The loan often has a short repayment term—less than a year—and is dependent on the property’s worth. Hard money and private money have a hazy line between them.  

These two possible lenders only have one thing in common: neither of them is constrained in the same way that a traditional lending institution is. They are both quicker, flexible, they allow liquidity and do not require credit checks. Hard money and private money might be difficult to distinguish from one another. Some investors see them as the same often interchange the terms. 

How Does One Become a Private Lender or Build a Private Lending Business?

Having lots of money available for borrowing does not make one a private lender by default. Some measures must be taken to ensure the proper operation of your individual or corporate loan business. To start a private money lending business, you must complete the following steps: 

Name your company and define its organizational structure

Thoroughly consider the name and nature of the company. Spreading oneself too thin is one of first-time private money lenders’ main errors during the initial start-up phases. Consider your business models, including whether you want to operate as a sole proprietor first or join a partnership, joint venture, trust, or company. 

Determine your lending strategy

Understanding the lending strategy, you will employ requires having a clear vision and end objective, which includes evaluating the following: Micro-Lending, Bridge Loans, Peer to Peer Lending, Micro-credit, Large Lending, and Asset-backed Lending. All these are lending strategies you should evaluate. 


If something goes wrong, having the appropriate business insurance plans in place that are customized to your business can help to safeguard you. The following are included in business insurance: 

Business/office insurance:

This protects your company’s premises and belongings against loss, damage, or theft, as well as financial loss caused by an insured disruption of your business. 

Faster Processing  

Loans from a private lending investment outlet are generally faster to process than institutional lenders. If you’re lending from a bank or credit union, you need a lot of patience. Funding usually comes in after you have gone through a tedious application process. Sometimes, it is not approved after putting in all the effort and investing time, money, and energy into the loan application.    

Unfortunately, time is of great importance when bidding for your dream deal. In comparison with institutional lenders, private lenders have quicker funding processes. Loans are approved more swiftly, and you can get on with your next commercial real estate transaction.  

Public liability insurance:

This ensures that if a third person is hurt or property is damaged, you won’t be held financially liable for the expenses of a legal claim. 

Professional indemnity insurance:

In the event of an act, omission, or violation of professional responsibility, this safeguards against legal fees and demands for damages from third parties. 

Obtain top-notch legal and financial guidance

Private lending may not be suitable for everyone because setting up a business can be a complex and drawn-out process. You could suffer significant losses or face legal action if the transaction fails.  

To ensure that you understand the statutory obligations of setting up, it is crucial to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of starting your own lending company. You should also always get good professional legal guidance. To comprehend the financial planning and tax issues that may result from the business, you should also seek sound financial and accounting advice. 

Evaluate potential clients and risk-return

In business, taking risks is normal. Thus, it’s important to weigh the dangers before investing. Private lending frequently entails “parking” capital or passive investments in major commercial developments like shopping malls and apartment buildings. 

Private lenders must consider covering the costs in the event of a default by the borrower or the initiation of legal action to recoup the funds because such investments need a significant amount of capital. Otherwise, lenders risk incurring significant debt that could harm their creditworthiness.  

Within minutes, receive suitable leads for your private lending business on Finance Lobby. Sign up now for free access. 

The Benefits

Private lending is a fantastic option to rapidly raise money for your commercial real estate project and earn money for the lenders. It has various advantages for both the borrower and the private lender, some of which are as follows: 

Benefits to the Borrower:

Less Formal Application Process

The less formal application process is a significant advantage you stand to gain when working with a private lender. Compared to traditional banks and credit unions, mortgage application procedures with private lenders are typically more relaxed and less time-consuming. 

Faster Processing

Unlike institutional lenders, loans from private lending outlets are typically processed more quickly. You need great patience when taking loans from a bank or credit union. Funds typically become available after you have endured a time-consuming application process. 

Flexible Qualification Demand

Private lending could be an excellent choice if your financial records are difficult to access. Institutional lenders have more defined policies and won’t approve your loan application if you don’t have readily available financial records. For freelancers and self-employed individuals, this is extremely helpful.  

In contrast to institutional lenders with a more demanding qualification requirement, private lenders are more forgiving when your credit history is less than pristine and are more likely to give you a shot. 

Flexible Loan Terms

Private lender loans typically offer more flexibility. Private lenders are typically more open to making adjustments so that your loan is suited to fit your circumstances and fulfill your objective. 

Benefits to the Private Lender:

Large Profit

The profits on loans disbursed are private lending’s primary advantage. You can earn from your capital as a lender, and private lending is a more lucrative investment than keeping cash in a bank. You also have the option to establish a greater interest rate than traditional lenders like banks and credit unions, which implies you will make more money. 

If a borrower defaults, collateral is available

When a borrower misses a payment on a loan, a private lender may take possession of the collateral to avoid suffering a loss. 

You get to help people

In addition to financial gains, being a private lender gives you the satisfaction of assisting others in securing their commercial real estate deals. What could be better than making people happy and earning money simultaneously? 

The Risks 

Although borrowing from a private money lender has its benefits, there are risks involved that could impact both the borrower and the private lender. 

Inability to Repay the Loan

Occasionally a lender does not perform due diligence and grants a loan to a borrower who cannot repay it. A borrower who chooses not to return the loan represents arguably the most significant risk to a lender. Private lenders must adequately examine the borrower and ensure they can repay the loans obtained to prevent finding themselves in such a predicament. 

High-Interest Rates

The borrower is additionally exposed to risks like high-interest rates. In general, the bigger the risk associated with a loan, the higher the interest rate, and since the majority of private loans have high risks, so do their interest rates. 

Fewer Regulations

Private loans are not as strictly controlled as loans from banks and credit unions while subject to state usury laws and somewhat regulated. The lender might exploit this and would then fix high-interest rates. Yes, the lender is still bound by state usury regulations and is prohibited from going over the legal maximum. 

Hidden Obligations in the Agreement

When borrowers do not carefully read the loan agreement and inadvertently agree to more than they planned for, there is another danger associated with private lending. Borrowers must carefully review the loan agreement to make sure they are on the same page as the lender to avoid the chance of this happening. 

Things to Consider Before you Invest in a Private Loan

After learning more about how private lending operates, the following crucial elements should be taken into account before making a private loan investment: 

For Borrower:

Ensure that you choose a trustworthy private lender

Financial institutions and private lending investment firms are typically more reliable. They frequently have formal settings and more affordable lending rates. Utilizing a mortgage broker is highly recommended. Using a mortgage broker offers various advantages and is a simple process to identify trustworthy lenders. 

Consider the interest rates of the lender

You want to borrow money from a lender with low-interest rates. Additionally, it is crucial to carry out a thorough study of the added expenses. Although some loans have modest interest rates, the extra costs are astronomical. Ask questions and only accept loans if you’re confident they’ll serve your needs and be affordable. 

Sometimes a lender fails to do their due diligence and hands over a loan to a borrower who cannot repay the loan. This is perhaps the worst risk for a lender, a borrower who refuses to repay the loan. Even when the lender takes legal action, they may not be able to recover the full amount that the borrower owes. To avoid being in such a situation, private lenders must do a proper assessment of the borrower and ensure that they can repay the loans taken.  

For Private Lender:


If you want to invest in private money lending, you need enough funds. You want to be sure you’re investing cash you won’t need for a while because the return might not come quickly enough. 

Friendly state usury laws and loan regulatory bodies

Make sure the state’s usury rules are favorable to private money lenders if that’s where you want to do business. 

Appropriate loan recovery methods

Due to their illegal loan recovery methods, many financial institutions face severe consequences. If your borrower defaults, discuss your alternatives for loan recovery with your attorney to ensure they are favorable to your company. 

How to Find the Best Private Lenders for Your Needs?

If you decide to take out a loan from a private lender, you might wonder where to look. The methods to locate the ideal private lender for your requirements are listed below. 


One approach to finding private lenders is through family and friends. People who have utilized a private lender might be able to suggest their preferred pick. Additionally, you might seek advice from colleagues and associates who have already engaged private lenders. 

Personal research

A quick web search is a terrific technique to identify the best private lender who would offer you funds for your commercial real estate project. You may discover more about the services offered by the best private lenders by visiting their websites. 

A commercial mortgage broker with a Finance Lobby account will make finding a private lender easier. The reason is that a broker with a Finance Lobby account has access to the broadest network of lenders in the nation, including the top private lenders for your commercial real estate deal. 


Unlock the Power of Private Lending with Finance Lobby

Join the nation’s largest community of commercial real estate brokers and lenders, and discover how private lending can transform how you finance commercial real estate deals.

January 4, 2022