Possible to finance land with ground lease in place?

Thanks for the answers to my previous question regarding ground leases. One follow-up question: I assume if a buyer were to purchase the fee with a long term ground lease in place, that he could then in turn finance a portion of the fee? Given that there is a high quality credit tenant as the lessee with predictable payments over the life of the ground lease, could the owner of the land use leverage via debt to enhance their returns?
In Buying Property - Asked by David T. - Jun 28, 2009
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Paul S.
Broker/Agent
Glendora, CA

Yes, maybe. Financing is difficult today in general. This set up is tricky because most lenders are loaning on the improvements not the land. Click on the link below to talk to someone who might know of availability of such a loan?

Jun 29, 2009
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Leslie H. C.
Broker/Agent
Austin, TX

Purchase the Fee?
Are you talking about the Land or the Lease.
A person that purchases a ground lease, but does not own the property is purchasing an annuity guaranteed by the credit of the tenant that has signed the lease.
The purchase or assignment of the lease is a different transaction from the purchase or ownership of the land.
If you own the land and you own the lease (income from the lease) then you could finance the land. The lender would want a 1st lien on future rents in the event of a default. You could not sell or assign the lease if the bank has a 1st lien on the rents. That is their security that they will get repaid.
Can you finance the land if you are the owner of the land and you have assigned or sold the ground lease?
The lease acts like a 1st lien on the property and the holder or beneficiary of the lease would not be willing to subordinate the lease income to the new loan. Most lenders would not make you a loan solely on the land without the income pledged as collateral.

Can you finance Land with a ground Lease?
Yes - if you receive the income and can pledge it as collateral to the bank
NO – if someone else receives the income and you cannot pledge the income as collateral.
Leslie H. Cox has been practicing commercial real estate for over 20 years and owns two commercial real estate companies in Texas.
Texas Apartment Brokers, LLC www.TexasAB.com
Cox Commercial Real Estate Advisors www.LHCox.com

Jun 29, 2009
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