My pal, Adam, hadn’t been terribly smart with his money as a young man and, as a result, made himself stay at a high-paying corporate job here in Greenville longer than he’d ever intended. For years, almost every time we’d meet over at Sharkey’s Pub for a beer, he’d berate himself for being foolish with his finances and for working so long behind a desk just so that he could catch up with his peers. Reminding him that at least he’d learned from his mistakes and was actually catching up rarely did anything to lift his mood. The last time I saw him, however, was different. Something had changed.
The change, it turns out, had to do with his career: he was finally quitting the corporate job to start investing in real estate, like me. A long-time passion that he’d always hinted at—but never admitted to—buying, rehabbing, and selling houses was suddenly the only topic of our last conversation. Apparently, he was tired of putting his life, and his dream job, on hold.
His main concern was finding funding for his deals once he learned how to invest. He was debt-free, but his credit score wasn’t where he wanted it to be—and because he was also new to investing—he wasn’t so sure a South Carolina hard money lender would work with him, either. As a successful investor who uses hard money to close on deals all the time, I told him I was sure he was wrong.
The Best Hard Money Lender in South Carolina For You
No matter where you are on the financial spectrum, or how much experience you have at buying, renovating, and selling property, there’s likely a lender that would love to fund your deals. Hard money lenders are in the business of making money in real estate, just like you. So, unlike banks and credit unions, the criteria they use to approve a loan isn’t so much based on your work history, credit score, or whether or not you’re midway through building an investment property portfolio. It’s primarily based on the investment house you want to buy.
And, because hard money loans for real estate investors are often provided by companies and individuals who invest, too, they understand the terms you need to quickly turn a deal around. That usually means you can count on:
A fast application and approval process
Loan terms of a few months to one year
The possibility of interest-only payments until you sell the property
It also means that, when you need money to buy and renovate a fixer so that you can then sell it shortly after for a profit, you don’t have to worry about being denied financing because the home isn’t already perfect. Your job is to do the rehab to spruce it up. The job of a reputable local hard money lender is to give you access to funds to do it.
Not every hard money lender in South Carolina will be right for you, however. But, one of the four below—which are also some of the best hard money lenders nationwide—should suit you quite well. Let’s take a look at your options:
LendingHome works with South Carolina real estate investors of all experience levels, plus they offer some of the best rates around. Taking into account your local market as well as the deal itself, they can fund up to 90% of the price to purchase a property and up to 100% of the cost to renovate it. And, maximum loan amounts aren’t necessarily capped at a dollar amount, but rather at 75% of the home’s After Repair Value (ARV). Interest rates start as low as 7.5% and loan origination fees are pretty minimal, too.
Time to close is fast, which is fairly typical of the best hard money lenders. So, you could have money-in-hand for your Charleston fixer in as little as five days to two weeks. That could help you outcompete your fellow buyers. And, since you get up to 12 months to pay it back, you’ll have some space to breathe—and sell your investment property at a competitive price as well.
Additionally, if you’re a new investor and your credit score is lacking, like my pal Adam, LendingHome is a great choice for getting a hard money loan for the first time. You may only need to have a cash reserve of $15,000 and a credit score of 550 to qualify. Though they’d prefer you have at least a few deals tucked under your belt, they won’t hold it against if you don’t. You just won’t get the best loan rates until you do. Of course, with a blog dedicated to buying, rehabbing, and selling homes, they’ll help you get that experience, too.
Finance of America
Finance of America offers a lot of bang for your buck when you’re in the business of buying single-family homes as investment property. For some investors, they throw in a few extras, too. To start, they can loan as much as 90% of your acquisition costs as well as the total cost of repairs up to two million dollars and 75% of a property’s ARV—and fast, too.
As a new investor you might get capped at $500,000; but, the first investment property you buy in Columbia shouldn’t be the biggest project you take on anyway. Whatever your experience level, this lender will also give you 12 months—or more—to make your interest-only payments at a rate that could be as low as 6.75%.
You might need a slightly higher credit score than other lenders require and a hefty cash reserve of $50,000 to get approved for a loan—especially if you’re inexperienced. But, if you’ve done more than a few deals and are considered a very low risk, you could be granted access to a line of credit equaling ten million dollars. For the South Carolina investor who’s ready to put their portfolio on the fast track by buying several homes at once, this ‘Exposure Limit’ loan makes reaching that goal a whole lot easier.
RCN Capital will help you buy houses to renovate and sell from Spartanburg to Charleston, whether you’re an old hat, like me, or the newest kid on the block. They’ll give you as much as 85% of the purchase price and 100% of your costs to perform the rehab on a house, too. And, you can borrow as little as $50,000 on up to $2.5 million until you reach 75% of the property’s ARV and expect a fast close.
That gives you a lot of room to take on different-sized deals as you gain experience and to start diversifying your real estate portfolio when you’re ready. An interest rate that starts at only 7.99% and the option to extend your payments for six months past the 12-month loan term may make this lender an affordable choice for the more labor-intensive deals as well.
You will have to have some paperwork in order to work with RCN since they do check your background, run your credit, and review your past projects. You may need a moderate amount of liquidity to get approved for a loan, too. But, a less-than-stellar financial history won’t necessarily keep you from borrowing. It may just mean you won’t receive the best rates until RCN decides their experience with you outshines the past. If you keep bringing them business and making good on your loans, that will definitely be easy to do.
Residential Capital Partners
Residential Capital Partners (ResCap) is another competitive hard money lender with a strong southeastern presence and the willingness to work with most investors. Plus, they can finance 100% of your expenses to purchase and rehab a house up to a max of $1.5 million and 70% of the property’s ARV. It is entirely possible that your upfront costs will be minimal—if anything at all. And, with an interest rate of only 10% and the low origination fee getting rolled into the loan, making your payments over either the six or nine month terms should be fairly easy.
They also only take about two days to notify you of an approval and two weeks to close a deal. So, even when you’ve never worked with them before, you should be able to get your funding fast. On the other hand, if you have done business with them in the past or you’ve got impressive credentials to reduce being viewed as a risk, it’s possible to get pre-approved to borrow at a future date. When buying in cities where good deals don’t happen all the time, like Myrtle Beach or Hilton Head, having this leg up on financing is a great way to quickly snag that rare find.
Of course, you don’t need a big cash reserve or to be seen as creditworthy to qualify for a loan—you mostly need a property that could make everyone money. In fact, $15,000 in the bank and a credit score of 600 should suffice. Then, as you prove your worth by being a good borrower, you’ll get better rates, access to fast pre-approvals, and a loyal financing partner for as long as you keep finding the best deals.
Whether you’re new to investing in South Carolina real estate or you’ve been buying, rehabbing, and selling homes for a couple of decades, there will be a local lender that’s more-than-happy to fund your deals. And, finding the right one for you can be as easy as picking one from this list or even doing your own research by making a few calls.
Since your needs will evolve as you start buying multiple investment properties and growing your business—and also because no two deals are alike at any time—it’s good to have a couple of reputable lenders in your back pocket that you can call upon when you need them. Having access to several in one location that also compete to give you the best terms on every single deal is even better. Luckily, for that, you only need to make one call.
A Better Way to Secure Your Best South Carolina Hard Money Lender
It seems like it was just yesterday that I had to make a lot of calls to find the right South Carolina hard money lender to fund my first few deals. As a new investor, the process was slower than I would have preferred. And, this was before almost everything was online, too. The result was that more than a couple of properties slipped through my fingers because financing those deals didn’t happen fast.
Things changed for me once I became an independently owned and operated HomeVestors® franchisee, however. From the get-go, I was connected with a network of regional franchisees who’d already done a lot of the financing legwork for me. So, all I had to do was reach out for the right recommendations. And, with the respected HomeVestors® name brand behind me, reputable hard money lenders who hadn’t worked with me before were suddenly eager to do so. Before I knew it, funding deals got easier and faster.
Of course, just when I thought things couldn’t get better, they did. I’m not just talking about the advent of the internet, either—though that’s certainly helped. See, as a franchisee, I have access to HomeVestors®’ proprietary lending portal in UGVilleSM. Through this portal, I can connect with top-tier South Carolina hard money lenders, like the ones listed here, by simply entering the details about each deal once. Then, I just sit back and wait for the financing options to roll in from the lenders who want to compete for my business. It is the single easiest, and fastest, way I know of to secure money to buy and renovate property—even for new investors, like Adam, getting a late start in their new career.
Secure more options for funding your real estate investment deals no matter your level of experience. Contact HomeVestors to join the team and get fast access to UGVilleSM—and our proprietary lending portal—today!