Tag: Bridging Loan

How has the Coronavirus affected bridging finance?

Surveyors are being extremely cautious

Even where a valuation can be done, surveyors are being very cautious. Whilst they will be producing the usual figures for an open market valuation, 30 day, 90 day and 180 day sale, they may also add a revised figure to allow for the likelihood that prices will fall after the pandemic is over.  Some surveyors have even taken to writing, ‘this valuation cannot be relied upon’, on their reports. This makes the report worthless to many bridging lenders, who aren’t prepared to lend on the basis of this type of valuation.

Social distancing causing problems with witnessing legal documents

There are currently problems with getting legal documents witnessed by a solicitor as most are now working from home and not seeing clients face to face. 

Staffing shortages are affecting lenders too

Lenders have also been impacted by the requirement for staff to work from home wherever possible and have had to set up systems to allow staff to work remotely.  

Staffing numbers have been hit by those needing to self-isolate, which has affected lenders’ abilities to deal with new cases.

Bridging Finance during the Covid19 Pandemic

How has the Coronavirus affected bridging finance?

Some bridging lenders have stopped lending

A number of bridging lenders have stopped providing bridging loans during the current Coronavirus pandemic. Many lenders have announced that they are temporarily stopping all new lending or restricting the size and types of loan that they offer.

Some current lending applications have been cancelled

Some lenders have cancelled on-going applications and have even pulled current offers where contracts have not been exchanged.  In some cases lenders are requiring customers to start the application process again from scratch.

Those still lending have reduced loan to values and loan sizes

Those lenders who are still offering bridging finance are being very cautious and have taken actions such as reducing their maximum loan sizes.  Maximum gross loan to values (LTVs) are down from 80% to around 60 to 65%.

Bridging Loans when selling a house – what are the pros and cons?

Pros

  • You can buy your new property right away: You don’t have to wait to get a loan.
  • It gives you time to get a better price on your property: You can avoid the stress of having to sell your property quickly. By taking the time, you may be able to get a better price for your property.
  • Interest-only repayments which are capitalised on your peak debt: Your bridging loan repayments are usually ‘frozen’ during the bridging term until you sell your existing home. You’ll only have to keep paying your current mortgage and not have to worry about managing two home loans.
  • Banks charge standard interest rates: In the past, banks charged a higher interest rate for bridging loans but now there are some lenders that charge standard variable interest rates.
  • The same fees and charges as a standard home loan: Application fees are the same and you don’t have to worry about break costs or discharge fees for paying the loan off quickly. Keep in mind that most lenders won’t generally approve a bridging loan if you’re likely to sell the property in less than 3 months.
  • You can make unlimited P&I repayments: To reduce your interest bill, you can actually choose to make as many repayments on the bridging loan until you sell your property.
  • Avoid the costs of renting and moving twice: Sometimes renting and having to pay for the costs of moving twice may be a better option than getting a bridging loan. It’s important to speak to a qualified mortgage broker so they can help you do the sums to find out which option is better for your situation.

Cons

  • Interest is compounded monthly: Although the interest is capitalised on top of the peak debt, the longer it takes to sell your property, the more your loan will accrue interest. Interest is compounded on a monthly basis.
  • You need to pay for two valuations: This will be a valuation of both your existing property and the new purchase.
  • Higher interest rate if you don’t sell the property in time: If you don’t sell your existing home within the bridging period, a lot of lenders will charge a higher interest rate. Many will also require you to start making principal and interest repayments on the peak debt in order to service both loans. This can cause financial stress.
  • No redraw facility: If you choose to make repayments during the bridging term but need to redraw for any reason, you won’t be able to do so.
  • Normal early termination fees will apply if switching lenders: If your current lender doesn’t offer a bridging loan product, you’ll have to go with another lender that will likely insist on taking on the entire debt (your existing mortgage plus the bridging loan). Because you’re switching lenders, you may be liable for early termination fees and break costs particularly if you’re switching during a fixed interest period.

Bridging Loans: Explained

Selling your home and buying a new property at the same time can be a little tricky.

It can sometimes take a while to sell your home, leaving you without the sales proceeds to buy your new property.

With a bridging loan, you can avoid the stress of matching up settlement dates, move quickly to buy your new home and give yourself more time to sell your existing property.

A stort-term bridging finance is also known as ‘relocation loan’.

Bridging loans explained: How does it work?

A bridging loan is basically finance that allows you to buy a new property without having to sell your existing property first.

Banks work out the size of the loan by adding the value of your new home to your existing mortgage then subtracting the likely sale price of your existing home.

What you’re left with is your “ongoing balance” or “end debt” which represents the principal of your bridging loan. Banks will assess your ability to make mortgage repayments on this end debt.

Lenders use both properties as security and you’ll have one loan (peak debt) to cover both the existing debt and the new purchase.

Between when your bridging loan is advanced until you sell your existing home, most lenders capitalise interest-only repayments on the peak debt which means that you’ll only have to worry about continuing to make principal and interest (P&I) on your current mortgage, rather than trying to manage repayments on two home loans.

After your property is sold, you simply continue to make normal home loan repayments, plus the compounded bridge loan interest, on the new loan.

Small businesses boosted by bounce back loans

The government have announced its intention to offer bounce back loans to small businesses. The key terms of these loans are:

  • businesses will be able to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000 and access the cash within days.
  • loans will be interest free for the first 12 months, and businesses can apply online through a short and simple form.

Small businesses will benefit from a new fast-track finance scheme providing loans with a 100% government-backed guarantee for lenders.

Rishi Sunak said the new Bounce Back Loans scheme, which will provide loans of up to £50,000, would help bolster the existing package of support available to the smallest businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

The scheme has been designed to ensure that small firms who need vital cash injections to keep operating can get finance in a matter of days, and comes alongside the £6 billion awarded in business grants, supporting 4 million jobs through the job retention scheme and generous tax deferrals supporting hundreds of thousands of firms.

The government, which has been consulting extensively with business representatives about the design of the new scheme, will provide lenders with a 100% guarantee for the loan and pay any fees and interest for the first 12 months. No repayments will be due during the first 12 months.

The loans will be easy to apply for through a short, standardised online application. The loan should reach businesses within days- providing immediate support to those that need it as easily as possible.

4 signs it’s time to replace your tractor

Is your tractor holding your farm business back? Here are four signs it’s time to replace your tractor.

Whilst a new tractor may be a big expense, using outdated machinery can seriously impact your farm business’ profitability, so it’s important to know the signs that may indicate that it’s the right time to bite the bullet and invest in a new tractor. 

Your business is growing or changing

As your business grows and evolves so will its requirements, and you may find that your existing tractor’s capabilities no longer cut it. If you now have more crops than you used to, you may require a tractor with a higher capacity to get the job done more efficiently and save time and money. Equally, if you have diversified into farming a new crop, you may find that you require a new tractor with different capabilities.

You’ve used it for 12,000 hours

Check how many hours you’ve racked up on your trusty tractor. It is generally agreed that standard-sized tractors have around 12,000 hours of use in them, whilst compact tractors have considerably less. If your tractor has done over 12,000 hours, it could be reaching the end of its lifespan.

It keeps needing repairs

If your tractor keeps breaking down or needing maintenance, this could also be a sign that it has reached the end of its lifespan. Rather than shelling out regularly to have it repaired, it may be more cost-effective to simply invest in a new machine.

It uses old technology

If your tractor uses outdated technology, it could be holding your business back from reaching its full potential. New agritech is being developed at a rapid pace and tractors are constantly being made smarter and more efficient. Investing in a tractor that uses modern technology could help to boost your business’ productivity and profitability. 

If you require help or advice with financing a new tractor, speak to our team here at Richmond Asset Finance. We provide a range of flexible agricultural finance services to help you to grow your business. To discuss your requirements in more detail, give our team a call on 0113 288 3277.

Ideas for supplementing your farm income during the festive season

Cash-in on Christmas by diversifying your farm business during the festive season.

According to NatWest, two thirds of farms have now diversified their business to generate alternative revenue streams throughout the year and boost their income.

Many farms that have successfully diversified report that their additional ventures have become a vital part of their business.

Whilst the winter months are typically much quieter for agricultural businesses, with a little creativity they can offer excellent opportunities for exploring new business ideas.

Here are a few of our favourite ideas for diversifying your farm business during the festive period.

Holiday letting

Many families and friends book holidays and weekends away to meet up and celebrate together over the Christmas holidays. Rather than letting unused land or farm buildings stand empty and unused during the winter months, why not convert them into holiday lettings. This can be particularly lucrative if your farm is in a scenic location.

Grow Christmas trees

Nothing beats the smell of a real pine Christmas tree, and according to the British Christmas Tree Growers Association over 7 million trees are sold in the UK each year. Choose a type of fir tree that will thrive in your farm’s land and soil type and start growing fir trees to sell locally each Christmas.

Run Christmas events

If you’ve got the land and buildings, why not run a series of festive events for the public in the lead up to Christmas? Popular activities and events could include turning a kids’ petting zoo into Santa’s grotto, running kid’s Christmas craft activities or adult wreath making workshops.

Turkeys and geese

Rearing free-range turkeys and geese can provide an additional source of income around Christmas time when demand for high quality meats for Christmas dinner soars.

To find out if you can apply for rural finance to help with your diversification project, get in touch with our team here at Richmond Asset Finance to discuss your plan in more detail.

What to expect from the new John Deere combine harvester

Agricultural tech and machinery company John Deere unveiled details about their new X9 combine harvester at the recent Agritechnica 2019 event in Hanover, Germany.

If you’re thinking about updating your combine harvester and are looking for a state of the art machine that can improve output and efficiency, then you may want to consider John Deere’s new X9 model.

The X9 was designed to help farmers with large farms and tough harvesting conditions to improve efficiency.

John Deere’s product manager Matt Arnold said: “the machine is suitable for small grains crops, pulse crops, canola, high moisture crop, soybeans, anything that’s either tough to thresh, green-stem material, high-material content.”

The company reports that the new model is capable of harvesting more than 100 tons of small grains or wheat per hour, with losses of less than 1%.

To help you to decide whether the new model would be suitable for your requirements, we’ve taken a closer look at some of the X9’s key technical details.

Greater inside width – The X9 is said to have the widest body in the industry, offering larger threshing and separation areas for improved capacity and crop flow.

Optimised chopper – The X9’s chopper is designed to maximise air flow volume and reduce the amount of energy required.

Data tools – The X9 is equipped with a selection of data tools including Operations Center, JDLink Connect and Combine Advisor to improve efficiency and make the machine simpler and more comfortable to operate.

Dual-axial rotor – Improves the combine’s separating ability to reduce density and maximise performance.

The X9 combine harvester is due to go on sale in June 2020.

If you require help or advice with financing a new combine harvester, speak to our team here at Richmond Asset Finance. We provide a range of flexible agricultural finance and asset finance services to help you to grow your business. 

To discuss your requirements in more detail, give our team a call on 0113 288 3277.

What are the benefits of using hire purchase?

Need to purchase an asset, but don’t have the money to buy it upfront? Take out a hire purchase agreement to receive the asset now and pay for it in affordable instalments. 

Hire purchase is a popular type of asset finance popularly used by businesses to buy vehicles, machinery and equipment.

Whilst you are still paying for the asset, the creditor is the legal owner, but once you’ve finished your payment plan it’s all yours.

Here are just a few of the benefits of buying an asset using a hire purchase agreement:

No need to pay a large sum of money upfront– Whilst you may be required to put down a small deposit, the cost will be nothing like paying for the asset upfront. This is particularly useful if it’s a large and unexpected cost, like a vehicle or key piece of machinery breaks down.

Flexible and affordable payments– Hire purchase allows you to spread the cost of the asset over a set period, so you’re paying off a small, affordable sum each month.

Protect your cashflow – Spreading the cost helps you to look after your business’ cashflow. Healthy cashflow is essential for developing and growing your business.

Own the item at the end of the payment plan – At the end of the payment plan, the asset is yours to keep!

Immediate use of the item – You can start using the asset immediately, meaning no expensive downtime whilst you save up the funds.

High quality asset– Many businesses find that they are able to afford vehicles and equipment of a much higher quality and specification through hire purchase than they would have if they were paying upfront. 

Fixed interest rates– Hire purchase interest rates are fixed, meaning no uncertainty on costs, helping you to keep your cashflow stable.

 No VAT on monthly repayments– VAT is paid upfront by you along with any deposit required. You will then re-claim the VAT in your regular payments.

For more information about our hire purchase agreements, or to discuss your requirements in more detail, give our team here at Richmond Asset Finance a call on 0113 288 3277.

More property investors using bridging loans

Recent statistics show that the demand for bridging loans is continuing to grow, particularly in the property investment market.

Whilst property investors may be shunning commercial properties amidst Brexit uncertainty, the market for residential property investment in the UK is still booming.

Recent figures show that investment in UK residential property rose by a huge 150% in 2018.

Tighter mortgage lending criteria has created a higher demand for rental properties. The high demand has caused a shortage of rental properties, allowing landlords to charge higher rent. These factors combined with a slight decrease in property value have made residential buy-to-let properties a valuable investment.

As more property investors seek opportunities to buy properties in the residential sector, the demand for bridging loans has also increased.

In fact, the latest ‘Bridging Trends’ report found that for the second consecutive quarter the commonest use of bridging finance was to buy investment property.

According to the report, 25% of bridging loans were taken out to fund the purchase of investment property, that’s up from 22% in the first quarter. 

Bridging finance is the ideal solution for property investors looking to grow their portfolio as it allows them to move on a purchase quickly whilst the price is low. Without access to a bridging loan it is easy to miss opportunities whilst trying to raise funds.

Here at Richmond Asset Finance we provide flexible commercial bridging loanssuitable for property investment, buy-to-let, and land purchase and development.

For more information about our commercial bridging loans, or to discuss your requirements in more detail, give our team of experts a call on 0113 288 3277 and we’ll be happy to help.

Agroecological farming methods and how to finance them

Agroecological farming methods can increase productivity and help farms to become sustainable.

The farming industry is under increasing pressure to become more sustainable to help tackle the UK’s climate crisis.

Environmental issues that farms contribute to include deforestation, wildlife loss, soil degradation and pollution.

An independent RSA report by the Food, Farming and Countryside Commission has said that the UK must completely transition to a sustainable food system and agroecological farming methods by 2030 or face further climate breakdown and the continued rise in diet-related ill-health.

Agroecology is the science of sustainable farming. Agroecological farming using farming methods that work with and enhance natural and social systems. 

These natural methods can produce healthier, more nutritious food, increase farm productivity, and make agriculture more sustainable and environmentally friendly.

Examples of agroecological farming methods include:

Organic farming– An environmentally friendly method of farming that uses ecological pest control and biological fertilisers instead of chemical pesticides and synthetic fertilisers.

Agroforestry – The planting of trees in and around farmland to look after the environment and improve a farm’s productivity.

Pasture-fed livestock– Livestock that roams freely and eats a primarily foraged diet rather than being fed foods like cereal and soya.

Conservation agriculture– Using farming practices such as crop rotation, cropping system diversity, soil covers, and minimum soil disturbance to manage and protect the soil.

Biological pest control–This agroecological farming practice uses natural enemies including predators and pathogenic nematodes to control pests.

Financing the transition to agroecological farming methods

Within the report, the commission warned that farmers will struggle to completely transition without “stable” policy, regulation, advice and access to finance and innovation.

Here at Richmond Asset Finance we understand the unique financial challenges that farmers face today. We help farmers grow their business by providing flexible agricultural finance and effective farm finance strategies for various sized projects.

To discuss your requirements in more detail, give our team a call on 0113 288 3277.

How bridging loans can help businesses affected by seasonality

Commercial bridging loans provide businesses affected by seasonality with funds to bridge the gaps between seasonal peaks and troughs in revenue.

Seasonality is a challenge faced by businesses in a variety of industries whereby they experience recurring peaks and troughs in income throughout the year.

One of the commonest causes of seasonality is the weather. Many businesses thrive during the warmer summer months and then see a sharp decrease in revenue when the weather is wet and cold.

The weather is by no means the only cause of seasonal dips though. Other factors that could cause seasonal changes in revenue include the economy, university terms, and special celebrations like Christmas, Valentines’ Day, Easter, and Mothers’ Day.

Tackling seasonality

Businesses that are affected by seasonality should take the time to analyse their performance throughout the year and understand when and why these dips and troughs occur. Once they have a good understanding of what is happening and why, they can adjust their budget throughout the year accordingly and make plans to drive sales or push alternative sources of revenue during the dips. This could involve setting up a side-project, running special offers, boosting marketing efforts, and hiring seasonal staff.

Even businesses that have prepared and planned for seasonal dips may find themselves struggling with cash flow during these quieter periods though. This is when a bridging loan may come in handy.

Bridging loans to finance seasonality

Bridging loans offer businesses affected by seasonality a quick way of acquiring the funds they require to tide them over during a seasonal dip.

As well as being useful for keeping the business afloat and paying for unexpected expenses during quieter periods, bridging loans can also be useful for maximising profits during peak periods.

Businesses that experience significant increases in demand at certain times of the year will need to inject large amounts of money into buying stock and hiring staff before they enter their busy periods. A bridging loan allows them to acquire more inventory and cover greater expenses to further increase sales during these seasonal peaks.

At Richmond Asset Finance we provide flexible commercial bridging loansto help with your business’ immediate financial requirements during seasonal peaks and troughs. To find out more about our bridging loans, give our team of experts a call on 0113 288 3277.

Four times a bridging loan could help your business grow

Bridging loans offer a quick and simple way of raising finance to take advantage of time critical business opportunities.

Whether you’re a new start-up or a well-established business, finding a large sum of money for a new investment at very short notice can be difficult and risky.

However, regularly allowing opportunities to pass you by can be just as damaging, making it difficult to keep up with competitors and preventing growth. 

This is where bridging loans can help.

A bridging loan is a short-term funding solution that bridges a gap between a debt becoming due and credit becoming available.

Here are four times when a bridging loan could help your business to grow.

New equipment or machinery– A bridging loan can be used to purchase new equipment or machinery to increase the efficiency, output, or cost-effectiveness of your business’ production process.

Investment opportunities– Profitable investment opportunities don’t come around every day, but when they do you want to be able to snap them up. From new business partnerships to new stock, investing in fresh opportunities is what keeps your business current, competitive and profitable. 

Buying property or land– Bridging loans are most commonly used for purchasing property or land and developing it. When buying property, time is of the essence, and applying for a mortgage can be a lengthy process. Bridging loans are ideal for raising funds very quickly to bridge the gap until the mortgage comes in.

Start-up costs – If you’ve identified an opportunity for a new business venture then you’ll want to act quickly to capitalise. A bridging loan can provide you with the funds you need to get your new business off the ground or market your idea.

For more information about commercial bridging loansor to discuss applying for one, get in touch with our team here at Richmond Asset Finance by giving us a call on 0113 288 3277.

What Is A Bridging Loan?

Many business owners unfamiliar with the various types of loans out there will ask the question what is a bridging loan? Here is a brief guide to bridging loans and how they can be used to help your business.

The best way to think about a bridging loan is to imagine a bridge that allows you to get from one place to another. The main reason bridging loans are used widely by businesses is to get themselves from point A to point B. The finance provided by the bridging loan is the bridge they then step on to get to the other side.

The loan is intended to allow your business to get to the next stage of growth until you can then secure a longer term form of finance to help you reach your business goals.

Bridging loans can be secured much faster than standard loans which means they are great for those businesses that need immediate cash and don’t have the time to wait around too long for decisions.

Bridging loans can be used by property development or other commercial operations as long as there is an exit strategy in place. Another drawback with a bridging loan is the higher interest rates charged on the amount borrowed.