Funders to Watch: Commercial Capital BIDCO— Why Brokers Should Consider Adding Small Balance Bridge Projects to Their Toolbox

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Funders to Watch: Commercial Capital BIDCO— Why Brokers Should Consider Adding Small Balance Bridge Projects to Their Toolbox

Being a skilled broker today means having a toolkit that can stand the test of time and allow you to quickly pivot with the lending needs of your clients while maintaining the momentum of a deal in motion. Some of you may just be starting out in the commercial bridge lending industry with a toolkit that is a work in progress, while others may be seasoned bridge lenders looking to reevaluate the services and value you are providing to your clients. In either case, read on to learn how Commercial Capital BIDCO finds success with smaller balance bridge loans and how you can replicate these deals in your market.

Having a wide variety of quality tools in your commercial lending broker toolkit can not only save you time with securing the best loan product for your client, but it will also position you as a creative broker who can handle the majority of funding opportunities that may arise without the need to pull in additional brokers. Let’s pull out and sharpen one of the most handy tools in our kit here at Commercial Capital BIDCO: the small balance bridge loan.

While not the most common tool for all brokers, the small balance bridge loan is still an excellent resource to add to your toolkit, as it will forge a path for your client to get to the next phase, especially if the circumstances require a small “bridge” to be set in place.

At Commercial Capital BIDCO, our team specializes in loans from $250,000 to more than $2 million. We have closed larger bridge loans that are out of our typical scope; however, this range is our sweet spot. This range of funding is where we find ourselves being the most flexible as a direct bridge lender and the most creative for our clients.

With this specific tool added to your portfolio, you must ensure you are also taking the time to sharpen and polish your knowledge of this loan product. It will prove a solid solution for certain scenarios and give you an additional way to add value to your services.

What is Bridge Lending?

Bridge lending, or a bridge loan, is exactly what it sounds like. It is a loan that a client needs to bridge a gap they may have between other loans they are securing or have secured. Providing this type of loan will build trust with a client and give them one more reason to continue working with you in the future.

Now, let’s talk through where and how a small balance bridge loan will come into play with certain deals. When it comes to this specific loan product, there are several reasons for a client to need a bridge loan on a smaller scale. A few of these are:

  • A fast closing of real estate or an investment property that a bank simply cannot close in time.

  • The purchase of an unstabilized piece of investment real estate in a rural area in which the property needs a few months to stabilize.

  • The purchase of real estate property that will be permanently financed in a government-backed loan. These loans simply take longer to close, and a client may need funding prior to that loan product closing.

  • A distressed sale in which the seller wants to close quickly and the buyer is purchasing at a discount.

  • When a client needs a small amount of funds to complete improvements to a land deal prior to the permanent construction loan being in place.

These types of scenarios may not meet the threshold or minimums of most bridge lenders who play in the large balance bridge loan space. That niche of lenders typically focuses on deals on larger properties with loan amounts that are more than $4 million in size. Diving into the smaller balance space will give you value and allow you to approach these deals with confidence. You will also be able to build the correct funding bridge needed by the client.

“At CCB, we pride ourselves in being a different type of bridge lender in that our preferred lending space is the $200,000 to more than $2 million loan size,” Jeff Luker, vice president of Commercial Capital at BIDCO, says. “This funding window not only allows us to provide a solid bridge loan product for our clients, but we are also able to quickly shift our gameplan within a deal and provide a creative solution to our clients when getting them to the finish line.”

Remember, bridge lending is just that: It’s a bridge to get your client to the next phase of their project. Whether that is a construction loan or a permanent financing loan, it is a path to that end result. This industry allows lenders of all sizes to play the game, and our advice to anyone looking for a new tool to add to their toolkit is to assess their services, or current tools, and the needs of their clients. Smaller balance bridge loans can be a truly valuable offering and one that you can find great success with when utilized in the correct scenarios. Educating yourself on how and when to use this tool will keep your portfolio, or toolkit, fresh and evolving.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Leah Waldrop is director of marketing for Alternative Capital Solutions and Commercial Capital BIDCO as well as The Commercial Broker Playbook. Waldrop has spent more than 10 years learning leading marketing strategies across numerous industries, including the music and entertainment industry, global supply chain processes and commercial lending. She believes her well-rounded experience enables her to create unique content and stay on the forefront of UX, graphic design and digital content trends.


Bridge Loan Secured for Apartment Building Acquisition Prior to Construction Loan

In May of 2021, Commercial Capital BIDCO closed on the acquisition of a soon-to-be-developed apartment building within an Opportunity Zone in North Carolina where our client purchased the property for $850,000.00. The client needed a bridge loan for the acquisition of the 54-acre property so that he could keep it secured while working on the construction loan. We were able to close this loan at the amount of $425,000.00 in just three weeks from start to finish. This was an excellent opportunity for our client while waiting on future funds to be secured for construction and updates.