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In addition to finding the right property, one of the most difficult aspects
of property development is being able to fund the purchase and re-development
of the property before putting it back on the market.
Many would-be property developers have the skills and flair for property
development, but lack the financial clout to put these into practice. So
what are the options for funding a property development?
Property development mortgage
A good place to begin is to talk to your bank or building society about taking
out a mortgage to fund the development, however most high street mortgage
providers are not fully equipped to service the needs of property developers
and are more likely to refuse finance.
A better bet would be to try one of the niche mortgage providers who specialise
in providing finance to property investors and developers.
Mortgages provided by these companies are often repayable on an interest-only
basis and in some cases it is possible to borrow up to 100% of the development
cost, however the developer is often required to own the land on an unencumbered
It is also worth noting, that as the risk increases to the lender, the interest
rate on repayments will also increase.
Using other people's money
A cheaper way of raising money may be to borrow from other people, such as
friends, family or colleagues at work.
The core advantage is that you are less likely to be saddled with expensive
interest rates, but it is important to keep all business dealings above board
and well documented, as it is all too easy for relationships to go sour if
problems occur with the development.
Seek private investors
Another approach that the savvy property developer might take is to ask people
to invest in the development, so that they can enjoy a profitable return
on the sale.
This removes much of the financial risk from the developer and means that
money can be spent on business expenses and not repaying high-interest loans.
Whilst selling a stake in the development is an attractive idea, it does
require a good level of marketing skills by the developer to find and convince
potential investors to part with their money.
It is still possible to find low cost properties around the UK, which are
much easier to finance, before working your way up to larger, more profitable
developments. Growing your property development business in stages allows
you to gain valuable experience, reduce your risks and helps you to build
up cash reserves to invest in future developments.
Don Suter is Managing Editor of the UK Property Portal
an online directory and magazine for UK property sales, rental, surveyors,
mortgages, conveyancing, property insurance, removals, news, investment and
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