A Beginner’s Guide to Home Construction Loans

How Student Loan Hero Gets Paid

How Student Loan Hero Gets Paid

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Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

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If you’re looking to build or remodel your dream home from the ground up, home construction loans could pave the way.

Also known as a self-build loan, a home construction loan allows aspiring homeowners to borrow for the costs of their building or renovation project. The loan could cover everything from the land where your home is being built to the construction company’s fees to the cost of materials and other needs.

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If this sounds like a financing option for you, check out our beginner’s guide to construction loans below, plus where you can find them.

How home construction loans work

Lenders view building-from-scratch projects as risky propositions. That’s because the nonexistent home can’t be used as collateral like in a traditional home mortgage. As a result, the price tag for a construction loan can be high.

For example, the rates on this type of loan are higher than on a traditional mortgage. You’ll also have a variable rate and a short repayment term.

Lenders also ask borrowers for an initial down payment on the loan. In fact, they might insist on 20% to 25% of the project cost, although some lenders allow a smaller down payment in the 10% range.

What’s more, the lender disburses the loan amount to the homebuilder, not the homeowner — and not all at once. The lender makes installment payments at each stage of construction. An inspector typically hired by the lender will also visit the building site to track progress on construction.

During the construction phase, you’ll make interest-only payments on your home construction loan. Since it’s a variable-rate loan, those interest-only payment amounts can increase or decrease during construction.

When construction has finished, the lender will likely give you the option to pay off the loan or convert your unpaid loan amount into a traditional home mortgage.

Different types of home construction loans

There are four variations of home construction loans for aspiring homeowners.

  1. Construction-to-permanent: When construction is complete, your loan will be converted into a traditional mortgage. With a construction-to-permanent loan, you’ll pay closing costs once and get to lock in your mortgage interest rate.
  2. Construction only: You could opt to take out two loans: one for constructions costs and another for your mortgage. You’ll get to shop for a mortgage lender while construction is being completed. With this two-time-close loan, you’ll pay closing costs a second time when you take out a mortgage.
  3. Renovation: If you’re working with a fixer-upper, you could borrow against the expected value of your renovated home. Keep in mind that there are plenty of alternative ways to pay for home renovations, including a home equity line of credit or a personal loan for minor repairs.
  4. Owner-builder construction: If you’re the builder of your own house and have the certification to prove it, you could take out this type of loan.
  5. End loan: With this type of loan, the builder takes on the costs of constructing your new home. When it’s complete, you buy the finished home from the builder with a mortgage.

No matter the loan type that makes the most sense for your situation, you’ll want to ensure you’re financially able to move forward. Do you have enough income, for example, to cover living costs while the home is being built?

Building a new house, or fixing up an old one, can get expensive fast. Proceed with caution. You don’t want to pay more for your future home than it’ll be worth when it’s done.

How to find home construction loans

You’re most likely to find a home construction loan with a regional bank or credit union in your community since many big banks don’t offer them. You can find a local loan officer or mortgage advisor by searching national banks’ directories online.

If you’re considering online lenders such as Waterstone Mortgage Corporation, make sure you compare multiple offers before settling on one.

Similar to buying a house, it’s wise to get pre-qualified for a home construction before you start picking out furniture. But qualifying for a home construction loan with one of these types of lenders is no walk in the park.

You’ll be judged primarily on your credit history and debt-to-income ratio. But there are a host of other factors that might be considered. At TD Bank, for example, you’ll need to supply a signed contract with your builder that details the budget and timeline of your project.

Partnering with a certified builder or developer is the first step for most aspiring homeowners. Choosing the right builder is crucial because it could mean fewer expensive delays in construction. Short of referrals, you might start your search for one via the National Association of Home Builders’ online directory.

Before you get that far, however, it’s wise to take one more look at your finances. Begin by asking yourself how much house you can afford. Then you’ll want to tack on the extra costs of borrowing to build it.

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LendingTree allows you to compare rates from multiple lenders by filling out one easy form. How Student Loan Hero Gets Paid

How Student Loan Hero Gets Paid

Student Loan Hero is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appears on this site (such as the order). Student Loan Hero does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero is an advertising-supported comparison service. The site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products.

How Student Loan Hero Gets Paid

How Student Loan Hero Gets Paid

Student Loan Hero is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appears on this site (such as the order). Student Loan Hero does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero is an advertising-supported comparison service. The site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products.

RATES (APR)loan amount
5.99% – 18.85%1 $5,000 to $100,000
7.86% – 35.99% $1,000 to $50,000
5.94% – 35.97%* $1,000 to $50,000
99.00% – 199.00%2 $500 to $4,000
5.99% – 24.99%3 $5,000 to $40,000
7.99% – 29.99%4 $7,500 to $40,000
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NMLS #1136: Terms & Conditions Apply
1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Fixed rates from 5.99% APR to 18.85% APR (with AutoPay). SoFi rate ranges are current as of March 19, 2020 and are subject to change without notice. Not all rates and amounts available in all states. See Personal Loan eligibility details. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, to qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including evaluation of your creditworthiness, years of professional experience, income and other factors. See APR examples and terms. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.
  2. To check the rates and terms you qualify for, SoFi conducts a soft credit pull that will not affect your credit score. However, if you choose a product and continue your application, we will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit pull.
    See Consumer Licenses.
  3. Minimum Credit Score: Not all applicants who meet SoFi’s minimum credit score requirements are approved for a personal loan. In addition to meeting SoFi’s minimum eligibility criteria, applicants must also meet other credit and underwriting requirements to qualify.
  4. If you lose your job through no fault of your own, you may apply for Unemployment Protection. SoFi will suspend your monthly SoFi loan payments and provide job placement assistance during your forbearance period. Interest will continue to accrue and will be added to your principal balance at the end of each forbearance period, to the extent permitted by applicable law. Benefits are offered in three month increments, and capped at 12 months, in aggregate, over the life of the loan. To be eligible for this assistance you must provide proof that you have applied for and are eligible for unemployment compensation, and you must actively work with our Career Advisory Group to look for new employment. If the loan is co-signed the unemployment protection applies where both the borrower and cosigner lose their job and meet conditions.
  5. Terms and Conditions Apply: SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet SoFi’s underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. To qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. If approved, your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, years of experience, income and other factors. Rates and Terms are subject to change at anytime without notice and are subject to state restrictions. SoFi refinance loans are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that the federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment or PAYE. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Financing Law License No. 6054612. SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp., NMLS # 1121636. (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org)
2 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Opploans.

Opploans Disclosures

Direct Deposit required for payroll.

Opploans currently operates in these states: . *Approval may take longer if additional verification documents are requested. Not all loan requests are approved. Approval and loan terms vary based on credit determination and state law. Applications processed and approved before 7:30 p.m. ET Monday-Friday are typically funded the next business day.

  1. To qualify, a borrower must (i) be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident; (ii) reside in a state where OppLoans operates; (iii) have direct deposit; (iv) meet income requirements; (v) be 18 years of age (19 in Alabama); and, (vi) meet verification standards.
  2. NV Residents: The use of high-interest loans services should be used for short-term financial needs only and not as a long-term financial solution. Customers with credit difficulties should seek credit counseling before entering into any loan transaction.

  3. OppLoans performs no credit checks through the three major credit bureaus Experian, Equifax, or TransUnion. Applicants’ credit scores are provided by Clarity Services, Inc., a credit reporting agency.

  4. Based on customer service ratings on Google and Facebook. Testimonials reflect the individual’s opinion and may not be illustrative of all individual experiences with OppLoans. Check loan reviews.

  5.  

    Rates and terms vary by state.

3 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Payoff.

Payoff Disclosures

  1. All loans are subject to credit review and approval. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, credit usage and history. Currently loans are not offered in: MA, MS, NE, NV, OH, and WV.
4 Important Disclosures for FreedomPlus.

FreedomPlus Disclosures

  1. The loan terms presented are not guaranteed and APRs presented are estimates only. To obtain a loan you must submit additional information and documentation and all loans are subject to credit review and our approval process. The range of APRs is 7.99% to 29.99% and your actual APR will depend upon factors including your credit score, usage and history, the requested loan amount, the stated loan purpose, and the term of the requested loan. To qualify for a 7.99% APR loan, a borrower will need excellent credit on a loan for an amount less than $12,000.00, and with a term equal to 24 months. Adding a co-borrower with sufficient income; using at least eighty-five percent (85%) of the loan proceeds to directly pay off qualifying existing debt; or showing proof of sufficient retirement savings, could help you also qualify for the lowest rate available. All loans are made by Cross River Bank and MetaBank®, N.A., Members FDIC.
* Important Disclosures for Upgrade Bank.

Upgrade Bank Disclosures

Personal loans made through Upgrade feature APRs of 5.94%-35.97%. All personal loans have a 2.9% to 8% origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Lowest rates require Autopay and paying off a portion of existing debt directly. For example, if you receive a $10,000 loan with a 36-month term and a 17.98% APR (which includes a 14.32% yearly interest rate and a 5% one-time origination fee), you would receive $9,500 in your account and would have a required monthly payment of $343.33. Over the life of the loan, your payments would total $12,359.97. The APR on your loan may be higher or lower and your loan offers may not have multiple term lengths available. Actual rate depends on credit score, credit usage history, loan term, and other factors. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. There is no fee or penalty for repaying a loan early. Accept your loan offer and your funds will be sent to your bank or designated account within one (1) business day of clearing necessary verifications. Availability of the funds is dependent on how quickly your bank processes the transaction. From the time of approval, funds should be available within four (4) business days. Funds sent directly to pay off your creditors may take up to 2 weeks to clear, depending on the creditor. Personal loans issued by Upgrade’s lending partners. Information on Upgrade’s lending partners can be found at https://www.upgrade.com/lending-partners/.