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Land Entitlement Financing

By Edited Jun 20, 2016 0 0

Land Owning

The process of land entitlement financing is long and tedious but one can be extremely satisfying for a property developer. Starting with the acquisition of a property, a developer must be creative and quick enough to spot available properties and acquire land entitlement financing to develop the property.

Introduction

Legal Process

Land entitlement financing has to do with the legal process to obtain approval for the property development right for a specific purpose. Land entitlement financing is a time consuming, costly and complicated and knowing all you could and could not do on a piece of land is critical in determining the viability of your real estate project.

Examples of land entitlements

There are different types of land entitlement financing focusing on different aspects of development of a property. Zoning is one of those entitlements and has to do with establishing spaces for parking in terms of numbers, heights of buildings and setbacks likely to be experienced. Land use advocates and zone experts play a huge role in this kind of entitlement.

Rezoning

To avoid pointless delays in the approval process, it is better to rely on and follow directions provided by your experts. Rezoning is another type of entitlement usually necessitated by the purpose for which a property may be used for. Rezoning depends on what currently a property is permitted to be used for.

This is an extremely complicated process and in some cases, it is not possible to do reverse a property’s use. In the process of zoning, a property develop is required to acquire permits for conditional use. Approvals for roads also need to be sought. These approvals require answering questions related to the maintenance of the roads to be put and availability of shared roads so before approaching authorities to seek approval for roads, you need to have answers to these and be ready to comply with the process of regulation. If you have utilities on your development site then you need to seek approvals for utility.

Donate

Do you intend to donate part of your land to the city in order to get utility entitlements? You will have to comply with the standards and regulations of the municipality. Agencies of development and planning of the city will also have to approve your landscaping and design plans to get approvals for landscaping. Your engineers and architects would be very instrumental in this area.

Financing your property development

Property Development

Bridge financing is a more flexible way than other conventional ways of financing. Mostly, bridge financing if used in purchasing properties quickly like in auctions but more developers are using this mode of financing to buy land before it is developed. Astute developers of property have a tendency of looking out for the best deals on land with profitability potential that is out for sale. In many instances, such land might appear to be in ruins but with well ordered teams and permission to build, the land’s potential is realised as it is quickly turned into a lucrative and appealing project.

This is a common practise in well built urban areas where there is scarcity of land making available land premium with rare opportunities to put up new developments. The value of available land is what demands developers’ speedy action to acquire it before another developer acquires it. Using conventional methods such as re-mortgages or loans to raise funds can be a lengthy process that does not guarantee availability of funds or that the piece of property that a developer desires to buy will not be sold. Bridge financing enables property developers to quickly honour deposits or buy off property as soon as they spot it.

This source of financing is flexible and appropriate for property development projects. It is important to note that bridge financing is not designed to offer permanent funding, rather it is temporary. Though this kind of land entitlement financing is readily available, its access is dependent on who is seeking for it, how well the investor feels the project has been thought through and their credit merit. Most developers use bridge financing to acquire property then follow up with plans to acquire entitlements. After that, they seek long term funding solutions such as self-build mortgages. This enables them repay both the bridging loan and cater for the cost of developing their property.

Put together a team of experienced development experts

It is best to put together a team of experienced development experts at the onset of the project. Such team will be useful in interpreting, reviewing, analyzing and advising you on appropriate zoning and required codes, design studies as well as the maximum potential of your property development.

Your team of experienced experts will essentially include project consultants, developers, architects, lawyers, structural, civil, landscape and soil consultants and engineers. Not having a team of experienced experts makes it very difficult to get the project moving and time is wasted struggling to finalize regulatory processes due to its complexity.  The regulatory process is frustrating and extremely slow, it can take between three to twelve months or even years; it depends with the complexity of the project.

Because it involves overlapping jurisdictions with no ties in terms of communication such as county, city and state, it is necessary to develop working relationships that are good with planners to get approvals. This is the reason why working with an experienced team of experts is best because they already have such relationships in place. You should capitalize on the good working relationships because they enable you quicken the process of approval. Your team of experienced experts will also negotiate issues on your behalf and get rid of any additional requests from local official to stop delays in acquiring approvals for your land entitlement financing.

Summary

If you spot a lucrative piece of land, don’t let it slip off your fingers. Using a bridge financing loan, you can make that piece of property all yours. Once you have purchased it, there are other creative ways of land entitlement financing to develop your property.

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