A construction loan is a short-term loan for real estate. You can use the loan to buy land, build on properties you already own, or renovate existing structures if your program allows it. A USDA construction loan allows you to buy both the land and the house. The companies on this site compensate LendingTree and this compensation may affect the way and where offers appear on this site (such as the order).
LendingTree doesn't include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available on the market. Traditional mortgages are easy to find, but home loans can be harder to come by. These loans are used to buy a property without a home, whether you're planning to build your dream home or a new location for your business, you may need a home loan to make it a reality. We'll go over the basics of home loans, how they work and where to get them.
Like a traditional mortgage, home loans require a down payment, are secured by the property you buy, and amortize over time. You'll work with a loan officer, who will help you apply for the loan and check your credit. Mortgage loans can come from banks or credit unions, specialized lenders, or government programs. However, not all mortgage lenders offer home loans.
This is because, regardless of where they come from, mortgage loans tend to pose a greater risk to the lender. You'll face higher down payment requirements and you'll likely need a better credit score to qualify. Because home loans are different from traditional mortgages, they can be more difficult to access, but you're not short of options. Here are some ways you could finance land.
While not all lenders offer home loans, you can find many banks and credit unions that do offer loans to buy land. There are also specialized lenders, such as agricultural credit organizations, that offer mortgage loans. Banks and credit unions may have different programs for raw land and improved land. Generally, the more developed the property is, the lower the down payment you'll need.
You can also find different loan programs depending on how quickly you plan to build a home on the property. If you're starting construction imminently, you can choose a construction loan from a bank or credit union. These loans work like a line of credit during the construction period, and the money is disbursed as construction progresses. At the end of construction, these loans are usually converted into a traditional mortgage.
Both the FHA and the VA have mortgage loan programs to help finance the purchase of land and, subsequently, a new home. The FHA construction loan program is open to people with a credit score as low as 500 with a 10% down payment. It will close once and the FHA construction loan will be converted to a traditional FHA mortgage when the project is completed. VA loans are for eligible military service members and veterans.
The VA home loan program is only open to people who will then use a VA loan to finance their new home. Land will need to be improved, which means it has road access and drinking water services. If you're a homeowner with a significant amount of net capital, you may be able to apply for a home equity loan and use the profits to buy land. Equity is the difference between what your home is worth and what you owe on your mortgage.
If your home equity isn't enough to buy land directly, you may be able to use your home equity loan to make the down payment on a mortgage loan from a bank or credit union. Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOC) are another type of loan that takes advantage of the capital you have in your home. Instead of receiving a lump sum, you have an account from which you can withdraw money over time up to a set limit. At the end of your retirement period, you'll start paying back the amount you borrowed, with interest; it's not that these loans often have variable interest rates.
You may be able to use a HELOC to make a down payment on a home loan. The USDA loan program offers financing to purchase land if the borrower plans to build a house. Only low- to moderate-income families are eligible, and the land must be in a qualifying rural area. Unlike traditional USDA mortgages, these loans are only available with two-year terms.
The USDA also offers single-closing construction loans that will finance the purchase and construction of the land, and then convert it into a long-term mortgage. Seller financing, also known as homeowner financing, is when you get a loan from the seller of the property, perhaps rather than from a traditional lender. You can also use seller financing to cover part of the purchase price. This can be a good option when a traditional loan isn't available.
A personal loan is generally unsecured and can be used for a variety of purposes, including buying land. You'll generally need good credit to qualify, but you're likely to continue to pay higher interest rates than with other types of loans. These loans also tend to have shorter repayment periods. With a teardown, you buy and demolish an existing home, and then replace it with a new one.
Lenders are generally more cautious about financing these types of projects, but you may be able to use a construction loan for this option. You can build the house of your dreams. Instead of buying an existing home, buying land offers you the opportunity to start from scratch and build a new home that is exactly the way you want it to be. If you choose a loan for unprocessed land, you can keep the property for several years until you're ready to begin construction.
Keep in mind that construction loans may not provide you with this opportunity. If you're ready to build, construction loans have the advantage of financing the purchase of land and the cost of new construction, turning into a traditional mortgage when you're ready to move. You'll only close once, making the process easier. Raw soil may be harder to sell.
Buying land can be riskier than buying a house, especially if the economy isn't booming. The land may not be buildable. You'll need to ensure that the property can maintain a house in the future if you plan to build, especially if you're buying unimproved land. Obtaining a home loan is often more difficult than a traditional mortgage.
You may have to have a better credit score and pay a higher down payment to qualify. Loans may be harder to find. Not all lenders offer home loans, so you may have to compare prices longer to find a good option. Once you have purchased the land, you can start planning what you would like to build on it.
There are several different options you can choose to finance construction, whether it's a residential home or a commercial building. There are a lot of mortgage options, but what if you need to buy an empty piece of land to build your dream home? Mortgage loans are significantly different from home loans. When you're ready to build on land you've already purchased, or if you want to buy a lot and build right away, you'll need to apply for a construction loan. If you already own the land, the capital can be used as collateral to help finance a construction loan, or you can also use a current home as collateral.
A closure, prior to the start of construction, will deal with both the construction phase and the permanent mortgage. Draws are held as construction is completed in phases. Interest only accrues on the money disbursed to date, not on the total amount. The short answer to the question “Can I use my land as equity for a construction loan?” It's yes.
That would involve a cash-out loan, which is not allowed under any version of a USDA loan, Mushlin warns. If you don't have many traditional financing options, you can use a hard-earned loan to finance your construction. The money is paid as construction progresses and the loan becomes a traditional mortgage when you move in. If you can't find several USDA construction loan lenders to compare, try expanding your search to include other types of construction loans.
You should ensure that you've explored all your options and found the best loan for you before you sign. But depending on what you intend to use the land for, there may be other loan options available to borrowers. If you're planning to build your home on this land in the near future, a construction mortgage could work for you, too. These short-term loans are intended for prospective home builders who want to start their project right away and have everything planned and ready to go.
Construction lenders normally require a down payment of 30% of the loan amount, although in some cases 20% will be accepted. You can apply for a mortgage loan if you are interested in buying land to build a house or using it for business purposes. Bank of Holland offers competitive financing for construction loans, whether you are building a house for you or are your own general contractor. .