Financing the Middle Market: How to Stay Competitive in an Uncertain Era

Originally published on Senior Housing News

By 2029, a projected 14.4 million middle-income seniors will live in the U.S., and 54% of them will lack the financial resources to pay for senior housing at the current market rate, according to a 2019 NIC-led study. While many operators and investors had traditionally focused on high-income consumers, the pandemic further propelled a shift in lender willingness to support the middle market. Our latest white paper, in conjunction with Senior Housing News, explores how operators can compete for the middle-market by taking advantage of government subsidies for senior housing properties and navigating the available financing options.

Read the full white paper here.


Healthcare SBA Financing Options:  A Conversation with Alex Cohen of Liberty SBF

Originally published on National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC)

Senior living providers and investors are familiar with the financing options from Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and HUD. Less well known are the government-subsidized loan programs for healthcare facilities through the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Liberty SBF is a specialty finance company that offers SBA, conventional and bridge loans.  

NIC Chief Economist Beth Mace recently discussed the SBA program and other financing options with Alex Cohen, CEO at Liberty SBF.  Here is a recap of their conversation.

Mace: Can you tell our readership about Liberty SBF? 

Cohen: We launched the firm in 2011 and have been lending through several business cycles. We work with a lot of businesses that are buying or refinancing real estate for their companies, or what we call owner-user commercial real estate finance. We have closed more than $2 billion in commercial real estate loans. One of the eligible asset classes is healthcare, including skilled nursing, assisted living and memory care. When we first launched the firm, we were co-lending with the SBA and financed a decent number of assisted living and skilled nursing facilities and that’s how we were introduced to the asset class. We now have a full range of loan products for healthcare facilities and medical practice owners. 

Mace: What distinguishes Liberty SBF from other lenders? You are a non-bank lender. What does that mean? 

Cohen: We are a specialty finance company, a non-depository lender. We do not finance our operations through deposits. We have private equity and institutional investors who invest in our assets, but we are not a bank. That gives us some flexibility in terms of the deals we can underwrite. It allows us to operate in an area of the credit space where banks might not feel comfortable during choppy times. Certainly, the last 18 months have been choppy considering COVID-19, but we have continued to lend in the healthcare space. Compared to other specialty finance companies, we tend to provide loans for assets in the $2 million-$20 million range. We are focused on lower middle market or small balance commercial loans.  

Mace:  Is your cost of borrowing higher or lower for a borrower than that of a conventional bank? 

Cohen:  We offer some very attractive rate products. The way we finance these products is very efficient. On the permanent financing side, we can offer very attractive high-leverage, low-cost products. Some of our larger permanent financing deals are being priced in the high 2%-3% with up to 80%-85% leverage. That’s very attractive financing for these healthcare facilities which are an eligible asset class for government subsidized or quasi-subsidized programs. We tend to work with the SBA. Some of its offerings beat comparable offerings from HUD, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac. The SBA programs aren’t as well known in the sector. We are trying to educate the healthcare facility owner community about other financing options available for ground-up construction, transitional type business plans for existing assets, or permanent financing for stabilized properties.  

Mace: What types of loans do you provide? 

Cohen:  We offer SBA, conventional, and bridge loans for healthcare facilities. One of the most attractive loan products we offer is the SBA 504 loan. Facility owners can get up to 85% loan-to-cost financing through the SBA with Liberty SBF as the co-lender. The loan can be used for ground-up construction, for example, and the borrower can secure up to the total cost of financing. It is a recourse loan. The way the program works, we partner with a Certified Development Company (CDC). A CDC is a nonprofit organization that promotes economic development within its community through 504 loans. CDCs are certified and regulated by the SBA, and work with the SBA and participating lenders, such as Liberty SBF, to provide financing to small businesses. The CDCs underwrite the loans with us and submit it to the SBA. When the loan is authorized, we fund the entire project. The SBA takes us out either at completion of construction, or shortly after the loan closes.  

Mace: Is the process similar to the way Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac partner with Delegated Underwriting and Servicing (DUS) lenders? 

Cohen:  Each government program works a little differently. There are many CDCs, and we work with the largest ones. CDCs also work with other state and local subsidy programs. The CDCs are typically well versed on healthcare facilities. We manage the process, not the borrower, so it’s pretty seamless. And because we’re specialists, we can get these deals done in 45-60 days, whereas a large bank lender may take 90-120 days to close.

Mace: When you say healthcare facilities, can you define the types of assets? 

Cohen: The types of assets we finance are assisted living, skilled nursing, memory care, and rehab facilities. The assets typically have a higher acuity of care. We also finance medical office buildings, which are eligible under the SBA program. Active adult and independent living properties would be considered investment real estate from our perspective. We do offer bridge lending on multi-family properties, including some age-restricted senior housing.  

Mace: Do you offer conventional and bridge financing?  

Cohen: Yes, we offer conventional and bridge financing. Our leverage is not as high with those products. But our borrowers can obtain permanent financing through our conventional offerings.  

Mace: Do you finance the operations/cash flow part of the senior housing business or just the real estate? 

Cohen: We only finance the real estate.  

Mace: Were you active lenders during the pandemic?   

Cohen: We were very lucky. We were designated as a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) lender. We made PPP loans to a lot of companies in our servicing portfolios as well as to new businesses. We financed close to $200 million in healthcare-related businesses and financed about $1 billion in total for all types of companies. We were able to help healthcare borrowers, including our own existing borrowers, to weather the storm. Our bridge loan business has been active, helping owners refinance their facilities at a lower leverage point. The PPP program was successful and popular with borrowers. Now, we are working through the PPP forgiveness process with our borrowers and new customers. They must demonstrate the funds were used for legitimate operating expenses. And at that point, the loan becomes a grant that is tax free income for the business. Facility owners, particularly smaller, closely held healthcare facility owners, should keep in mind that the SBA was chosen as the vehicle through which the government provided stimulus to the entire business community, not just small businesses. The SBA has provided loan and fee deferments, and some rules have been changed. For example, borrowers can refinance SBA and HUD debt into an SBA 504 loan, an option that was not available before. It can be an opportunity for borrowers to pull cash out and lower the interest rate. Also, the government continues to provide other subsidies to healthcare facility providers, through programs such as the Provider Relief Fund. We have a great originations team, and we can be helpful if anyone has questions on the programs.   

Mace: How large is Liberty SBF’s book of business for senior housing?   

Cohen: Our servicing portfolio is several billion dollars. Our goal, as we transition from PPP to core lending, is to deploy about $100 million-$150 million between now and the end of the year. We have a number of healthcare transactions in the pipeline. There is a lot of interest from borrowers who believe we are at or near the bottom of the rate cycle and want to take advantage of the low-cost financing.  

Mace: Has your bridge lending program been especially active during the pandemic? Why is that? 

Cohen:  Yes, our bridge lending program has been active. Borrowers with loans at maturity on their existing conventional debt or with an underperforming asset are taking advantage of bridge financing to reposition the facility. Or perhaps a buyer making an acquisition needs a bridge loan to execute a business plan to improve the census or put CapEx into the building to stabilize the property to get permanent financing or sell the asset.  

Mace: Do you offer non-recourse bridge loans? 

Cohen:  We do offer non-recourse bridge loans. They are typically larger in size than recourse loans. Non-recourse bridge loans range from about $5 million to $15 million, with about 65% loan-to-value.   

Mace: Broadly, what do you look for in a borrower?  

Cohen: Operating experience is key. What is their operating experience for these types of facilities and sizes? Do they understand the market? Are they in town? We look at the borrower’s net worth and liquidity relative to the loan amount we are making. We focus on the recourse guarantors—ultimately the owners of the business—and the non-recourse carve out guarantors.   

Mace:  Do you often turn anyone down? 

Cohen:  We look at deals all day long. We are focused on originating deals that fit our credit box. We offer a large swath of products to the industry and can cater to different borrower profiles. Certain situations are not financeable for us and those are deals we cannot move forward with.  

Mace:  Where do you get your lending ability from? Institutional groups? High net-worth individuals?  

Cohen: Our limited partners are primarily family offices. We have a well-capitalized operating company. The decision makers at our company are principals and managers. We were successful with the PPP program, and we are deploying that capital back into the market through our core programs with our limited partners and other institutional investors. They are very aggressively seeking investment opportunities at this point. We feel good about our capital position and our ability to lend.  

Mace: What else would you like to share with our readership? 

Cohen: I’m looking forward to the NIC Fall Conference in Houston. If anyone would like to set up a meeting during the Conference, please contact us.


Conditions Favorable for Penciling Out Middle-Market Senior Living

Originally published on Senior Housing News

The middle market is one of the biggest opportunities in the senior housing industry, and conditions may be particularly favorable at the moment for operators and capital providers to embark on projects.

The reward for senior living companies that can carve out a working middle-market model is that there is a rapidly growing group of older adults in great need of those services at this price point. To attract them, operators must charge a low enough rate that middle-income residents can afford, but one that is high enough to carry the right margins to make it a profitable endeavor for operators and owners alike.

But there are some companies focused on senior living that are blazing new trails in the middle-market space today by tweaking how these communities are financed and built.

They include Lloyd Jones, a Miami-based real estate investment, development and management platform that is actively forging a new middle-market model under the umbrella of its Aviva brand; and Innovation Senior Living, a Winter Park, Florida-based company that pivoted to serving middle-income older adults under an owner/operator approach earlier this year.

Before the pandemic, some senior living capital providers might have looked at middle-market senior housing as an emerging or niche product type. But Covid-19 has led to a wave of disruption, and lenders such as Liberty SBF see current conditions are more favorable for middle-market senior housing than before the pandemic.

“There are better opportunities to acquire properties at a lower basis, which makes executing on those types of business plans more realistic and less risky,” Liberty SBF CEO and Co-Founder Alex Cohen said during a recent Senior Housing News webinar.

Lloyd Jones COO and EVP of Senior Living Tod Petty believes that the middle market is the industry’s “opportunity of a lifetime.” And, he thinks it’s a product type that providers have the tools to reach.

“Some say it’s a mystery, and we may never figure it out,” Petty said during the webinar. “But I think we’ve been doing it all along.”

Middle-market strategies

Part of what makes the middle-market opportunity so attractive is the fact that many senior living communities are trading at a discount to replacement costs, given the level disruption that Covid-19 has brought.

Looking across the market today, Petty believes that the greatest opportunity to serve middle-income seniors is by acquiring properties at a good price and transforming them into middle-market senior housing. As many as 70% of the communities Petty sees on the market are “tired and old,” and have been starved of CapEx. Typically, they are owned by real estate investment trusts (REITs) who “want to dispose of them at very nice prices,” he said.

“For someone that has the vision, the wherewithal, has done it before and has a creative, vertically integrated platform, then this building can be bought, repurposed and put back on the market,” Petty said. “You will fill up because you’ll capture 40% to 60% of the market that is unserved, plus you’re going to get the baby boomers that don’t want to spend their fortunes.”

Cohen agreed that there is significant opportunity to acquire older distressed assets, not only from REITs but from private equity investors or mom-and-pop owners.

“That is exactly the type of business plan that we’re looking at and financing through our bridge product,” Cohen said. “Between now and the end of the year, I would anticipate doing somewhere in the neighborhood of $102 million to $150 million in core lending.”

Lloyd Jones is looking to meet the middle market in a few ways. The company is buying distressed hotels and converting them into senior living as well as picking up distressed and even Class A senior housing assets at a good price. Lloyd Jones is also developing ground-up “independent living light” communities where residents can age in place through the use of technology and partnerships with service providers.

Petty stressed that being vertically integrated is a big advantage for serving the middle market, and that operators need to be “lean and mean” when it comes to operations. He compares a middle-market senior living community to a boutique bed-and-breakfast — not as fancy as the Ritz-Carlton, but still charming in its own way.

While some newer communities have dropped their rates closer to the middle market to compete in the Covid recovery period, Petty believes those rates will rise again as capital providers seek to meet debt service ratios. And that will leave middle-market communities at an advantage.

“This product will be in a great position to thrive, because it will be affordable,” Petty said.

Petty expects Lloyd Jones will close on four acquisitions and start work on two ground-up developments by the year’s end, with a goal of adding about 1,000 units to its portfolio each year.

Innovation Senior Living takes a similar approach as Lloyd Jones by acquiring “tired, 20- to 30-year-old properties,” CEO Pilar Carvajal said. Currently, the company owns and operates three communities, with two more communities likely to come online by the end of the year. But CEO Pilar Carvajal would like to grow the operator to about 12 to 15 communities in about five years’ time, with the middle market as a specialization.

Carvajal comes from the subsidized housing world — and she sees some overlap between housing meant for low- and middle-income seniors.

“It’s very heavy on the operations, very strict expense control,” Carvajal said during the webinar.

Indeed — echoing Petty’s point that “we’ve been doing it all along” — she emphasized that her career has been focused largely on serving the middle-market, and that foundational operational approaches and financing structures to grow this sector of the industry are already in place.

Underpinning the company’s middle-market model are universal workers who can do many tasks in a community. Carvajal added that the operator is constantly negotiating its prices with vendors for goods and services, such as payroll, food and medical supplies. Using those strategies, the company can achieve “pretty good operating margins,” although not to the level of other high-end properties. Still, that can be enough for capital providers to get on board with a project.

“You can be profitable, and you can serve a population that has been largely neglected, that needs our help and that hasn’t seen their place in our industry — ever,” Carvajal said.

What lenders want

As a non-bank lender, Cohen said Liberty is more open now to “business-plan focused financing opportunities,” such as middle-market conversions or ground-up construction projects, with one opportunity being its small business administration loan product. The firm is also again underwriting conventional loans and bridge transactions outside of SBA.

When looking at operators to partner with, Liberty’s preference lies in those who come to the table with a few projects under their belt.

“We’re going to want to make sure that there’s operating experience in executing specific type of business plans that the borrower is currently seeking,” he explained. “As well as the … net worth and liquidity that are going to support that type of project.”

When underwriting new financing, Cohen said Liberty examines how a property or operator performed before the pandemic, and whether they can see a clear trajectory to return to those conditions in the months ahead.

“It really comes down to, what did the census look like before Covid and what is the trajectory in the last six to nine months?” Cohen added. “Savvy operators are figuring out ways to mitigate downside risk as waves continue to hit … and we’re excited to partner with folks who have been able to do that.”

Liberty is currently lending up to 85% of cost for SBA loans, including on ground-up construction deals. On the conventional side, the company is a little more cautious, with loans at about 65% to 70% loan-to-value, depending on the operator and product type.

Most of the deals that Liberty is looking at today are opportunistic acquisitions of distressed senior housing assets, as well as refinancings. And looking ahead, Cohen believes the market will continue to stay choppy and therefore that banks will continue to be cautious in looking for new projects to partner on.

In the meantime, he sees a lot of capital sitting on the sidelines, and lenders and equity investors are looking to deploy it where they can.

“We didn’t see the same types of underwriting miscalculations that occurred during the last recession, and we don’t see the same kind of oversupply of inventory,” Cohen said. “We think now is a good time to be investing in the sector.”


Medical Office Property Loan Closed: $1.8MM SBA 504 Acquisition Financing

Liberty SBF provided a $1,816,200 SBA 504 loan for the acquisition of a medical office located in Avon, OH for a provider of early intervention Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) therapy and related services to individuals with autism.

The property is a one-story medical office condo located in Avon Pointe, a 20-acre professional campus featuring regional medical office and traditional national office tenants. The company will occupy 100% of the property for its business.

How can we help?

Liberty SBF offers personal service for SBA 504 and Conventional loans for owner-user properties across the US. We’d love to help you.

Get Your Deal Quoted


Closed: $3.39MM ALF Conventional Loan

Liberty SBF has closed a $3.39MM conventional loan for the refinancing of a 16-unit adult residential facility located in Vallejo, CA. The loan will refinance the existing debt on the property, and provide funding for the borrower’s acquisition of a 49-bed assisted living facility in Mill Valley, CA.

Built in 1965 and with 100% occupancy, the 16-unit, 32-bed transitional facility for mentally challenged adults prepares residents for independent living. The appraised value for the Mill Valley property was $7.0MM, excluding business value of $700K. Liberty’s 1st Lien represents an as-is LTV of 48.5%. The principal guarantors have more than seven years of experience in the development, rehabilitation, and management of senior/adult care facilities.

How can we help?

Liberty SBF offers personal service for SBA 504 and Conventional loans for owner-user properties across the US. We’d love to help you.

Get Your Deal Quoted!


Closed: $3.53MM ALF Conventional Loan Refinance

Liberty SBF has closed a $3.53MM conventional loan for the refinancing of two assisted living properties in Saint Cloud and Palatka, FL by an experienced owner/operator, Aleph 1 Realty, LLC. The properties are the two-story, 40-bed Homestead Retirement Home in Saint Cloud and Kiva of Palatka, a one-story, 40-bed assisted living facility.

Paramount ALF, Inc. is the operating company that has run both facilities since 2016, when the borrower purchased the properties. Built in 1909, the two-story, 40-bed Homestead Retirement Home in Saint Cloud is 100% occupied. Kiva of Palatka, built in 1986 and 2003, is 70% occupied. The borrower, Aleph 1 Realty, LLC, has extensive experience as owner and operator in the assisted living industry.

The loan enabled the borrower to make functional improvements of both properties, and to buy out a business partner’s remaining interest.

How can we help?

Liberty SBF offers personal service for SBA 504 and Conventional loans for owner-user properties across the US. We’d love to help you.

Get Your Deal Quoted!


SBA 504 Milestone and the Senior Housing Changes…

New 25-Year Fixed Rate SBA 504 Loans Reach $1 Billion Milestone

Small businesses, banks, and investors warmly received the SBA’s 25-year loan program, launched in July 2018. In June, less than a year later, the total amount lent reached $1.04 billion, exceeding the $1 billion goal for the first year. The numbers represents 1,289 fixed-rate SBA 504 loans to U.S. small businesses.

Also: Read our article on what the 25-year term means to business owners.

Senior Housing Needed for Middle-Income Boomers

Medical Facility in Arizona

Senior housing today is unaffordable for middle-income retiree such as nurses, schoolteachers, firefighters and steel workers, and they will have too much income to qualify for Medicaid. Aging boomers also want more amenities and independence, and as-needed healthcare than earlier generations. Real estate investors, developers, owners and operators need to innovate fast. Some proposed solutions include tax incentives, repurposing existing real estate like former malls and big-box retail, designing for construction, operational efficiency and cost savings, and volunteer caregivers.

Rising Costs of Mandated Hotel PIPs

Nearly every hotel deal comes with a mandated, formal property improvement plan (PIP) that addresses every aspect of the hotel from mechanical systems and plumbing to lighting, landscaping, and parking. PIPs are increasingly costly, as branded hotels have become more aggressive in their PIP requirements. The PIP can be negotiable, especially for sellers and buyers who have existing relationships with the brand. Negotiating PIPs early on can directly increase profits for sellers and lower the costs for buyers.

US Retailers Strive to Differentiate Offline Channels

A recent study by Avison Young describes the challenges online retailers present to offline retail distributors in the US. As Amazon creates a shopping environment unrestricted by time, place, and product, some department store chains have improved offline sales by stepping up customer-friendly services. For example, Nordstrom is expanding its service-hub Nordstrom Local concept that combines several of its most popular or highly demanded services under one roof to serve customers in their own local markets.

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF offers quick closings for SBA 504 and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk. 


News Roundup: Healthcare space tightens as population ages…

Feds Update Congress, Economists Await Jobs Report

Man in suit with graph showing loan interest rates

Last week the Federal Reserve reported to Congress that the U.S. economy had maintained “solid growth” in the second half of 2018. In its monetary policy report the Feds gave a mostly sunny outlook for the economy balanced against what Reuters called “emerging domestic and global risks.” Economists are looking forward to this week’s jobs report. Last month the report showed better than expected results and that the job market continued to be a bright spot. Among the industries that led job gains last month were leisure and hospitality, construction, and health care.

Available Healthcare Space With Tighten Further in 2019

Office building with palm trees

In an article about medical properties in Houston, GlobeSt.com talked about the tightening of healthcare space in some markets. The cause us that the number of people who are 65 and over is growing at a much faster rate than the population of people under 64-years-old. Demand for healthcare space in the US could top 225.8 million square feet by the end of 2019. In comparison, it is estimated that there was “110 million square feet of available medical office space in existing and under-construction buildings in the US as of the second quarter of 2018.”

$12.9M Healthcare Facility Closes with Liberty SBA 504 Loan

Medical Facility in Arizona

A skilled nursing home in Tucson, AZ, recently closed with the help of $12.9 million in financing from Liberty SBF. Liberty provided both the $8 million SBA 504 first loan and a $4.9 million interim loan to allow the transaction to proceed while the CDC portion of SBA 504 loan is being completed. Sapphire of Tucson Nursing & Rehab is the area’s only privately-owned skilled nursing facility.

Florida Shines as State Where Most Seniors Want to Retire

Warehouse exterior with truck docked

Assisted Living and Skilled Nursing Facility owners take note: It’s true, older Americans really do prefer to retire to Florida. In it’s Fun Statistics About Seniors section SeniorLiving.org says that in according to the U.S. Census, the state had the highest percentage of senior residents (19%). Which state had the lowest? Alaska at 9.5%. Probably most obvious were the top reasons seniors gave for preferring the Sunshine State: warm weather and no state taxes.

The Enormous Opportunity for Owner-Occupied Healthcare Facilities

Doctor shaking hands with businessman

It’s no secret that healthcare in the United States is big business. In 2017, Americans spent nearly $3.5 trillion on their healthcare, and the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is estimating a 5.3% increase this year. By 2026, that spending is projected to reach $5.7 trillion.

That growth has a whole range of implications, but today we’re going to narrow in on what it means for the real estate market – more specifically, the market for owner-occupied healthcare facilities, and the ways that they can be a perfect fit for SBA 504 financing. Read more.

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF offers quick closings for SBA 504 and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk. 


News Roundup: Healthcare and Industrial Outlook in 2019

The Latest Commercial Real Estate News From Liberty SBF


The 2019 Outlook for Industrial: Strong, Not Stronger

Aerial view of warehouse with semi trucks

The industrial sector dynamics suggest that there’s still growth to be had in 2019, but that it’s unlikely that 2019 will be a stronger year for industrial than 2018 was, Geoffrey Kasselman of Newmark Knight Frank tells RE Journals.

In a New York, Nashville and Phoenix State of Mind

Bronx, New York brick apartment buildings

Industrial real estate is performing at record levels across the country. But New York City – specifically the boroughs of the Bronx, Queens and Staten Island – Nashville and Phoenix are the top three markets, reports View the Space.

Liberty Finances More Than $18 Million in Projects in New York, Tennessee & Arizona

Tennessee multifamily

Liberty has recently provided more than $18.9 million in financing for the acquisition of properties in New York, Tennessee and Arizona.

Surgery Centers on the Rise

Group of surgeons at operating table

As convenience becomes a priority in healthcare, more and more patients are opting for treatment in smaller facilities rather than large hospitals. Surgery centers have grown 82% since 2000, and the number of hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers in the U.S. is now almost equal. This growth is expected to continue into 2019, GlobeSt reports.

Liberty Provides More Than $14.2 Million in Healthcare Sector Financing

Medical Facility in Arizona

Liberty provided more than $14.2 million in SBA 504 loans to projects in the healthcare sector in 2018, including a skilled nursing facility in Tucson and a medical facility acquisition in Miami.

Fundamentals Are Key for Midwest CRE in 2019

Chicago downtown skyline with water

Though it’s unclear how politics, oversaturation and interest rates will affect the commercial real estate landscape in 2019, the strength of Chicago’s economy means the devil is ultimately in the details of each particular deal, notes RE Journals.

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF is the #1 ranked non-bank SBA 504 lender by volume in the country. We offer personal service for SBA 504, bridge and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk. 


News Roundup: How Will Technology Change Commercial Real Estate?

The Latest Commercial Real Estate News From Liberty SBF


Will Self-Driving Cars Change Commercial Real Estate?

Self driving car dashboard

Incorporating parking is an integral part of commercial real estate development, particularly in urban areas. Bisnow reports that autonomous vehicles, which could drop people off at work instead of being parked for hours on end, could dramatically change the development of commercial real estate moving forward.

Liberty Provides $ 43.6 Million in SBA 504 Loans for Properties in Urban Areas

Sports complex

Liberty has provided more than $43.6 million in financing for the acquisition of properties in major U.S. cities including Miami, Tucson, New York, San Diego, Atlanta, Memphis, Las Vegas, and Philadelphia.

Industrial is Real Estate’s “Darling” Class

Aerial view of warehouse with semi trucks

Industrial, distribution and warehouse continue to lead the commercial real estate pack across the country. GlobeSt reports that the strong performance of industrial real estate can be partly attributed to recent investments in multi-story industrial properties.

Liberty Provides $32.8 Million to Finance Industrial Properties

Warehouse exterior with truck docked

Liberty has provided more than $32.8 million in SBA 504 loans for the acquisition of industrial properties and warehouses across the country.

The Future of Commercial Real Estate and Technology

white line drawing sketch of downtown commercial buildings

It’s not just automated vehicles that might change the face of commercial real estate. National Real Estate Investor reports on two ongoing MIT studies aimed to better understand how design and technology will change the way people live and work and how those changes will affect the commercial real estate landscape.

Healthcare Real Estate Growing Faster than U.S. Economy

Doctors talking in hospital hallway

As Americans live longer and medical technology improves, demand for convenient access to healthcare continues to steadily increase. GlobeSt reports that the growth in this sector is outpacing overall economic growth and that demand for existing healthcare facilities and new constructions will continue to grow in 2019.

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF is the #1 ranked non-bank SBA 504 lender by volume in the country. We offer personal service for SBA 504, bridge and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk. 


News Roundup: Red-Hot Industrial Market Not Threatened by Trade Wars

The Latest Commercial Real Estate News From Liberty SBF


Red-Hot Industrial Market Outpaces Aggressive Construction

Construction interior of office building

Industrial construction is moving at a fast clip – and demand continues to outpace it. Globe Street reports that the national average vacancy rate has remained below 5% despite widespread new construction and inventory. Need financing for an industrial space? Give us a call at (855) 590-1174 or email info@localhost to talk to our experts.

Trade Wars Don’t Threaten Industrial Sector … Yet

Oakland skyline

Nationwide, year-over-year rent growth in the industrial sector hit 7.3% in Q3 – and in coastal markets like Oakland/East Bay, Sacramento and Long Island, rent growth was more than double that. Commercial Property Executive notes that record-high port volumes are likely a result of concerns over tariffs.

Liberty Finances Industrial Properties in Coastal California

San Diego warehouse

Liberty has provided $14.1 million in SBA 504 loans for two industrial properties in San Diego, California.

A Brand-New World for Healthcare Real Estate

Doctors talking in hospital hallway

With the advent of digital technology and the introduction of medical concierges and telehealth, access to healthcare has changed dramatically in the last decade. At Bisnow’s recent National Healthcare East event, attendees discussed how healthcare real estate is adapting accordingly with a renewed focus on flexibility.

Liberty Finances Health Care Projects in 2018 for More Than $14 Million

Medical Facility in Arizona

With a $13 million SBA 504 loan for a skilled nursing facility in Tucson, Arizona, and a $1.2 million SBA 504 loan for a medical facility acquisition in Miami, Florida, Liberty has provided $14.2 million in healthcare project financing in 2018 alone.

Follow Strong Population Growth for Acquisition Targets

Florida coastline aerial

Florida, California, Texas, Arizona, Washington – according to National Real Estate Investor, these are some of the top states that people in the U.S. are moving to right now. Strong population growth is a good indicator of future acquisition opportunities, so we’ll be keeping an eye on these markets (and you should, too).

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF is the #1 ranked non-bank SBA 504 lender by volume in the country. We offer personal service for SBA 504, bridge and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk. 


News Roundup: A House (and Senate) Divided Will Probably Be Fine, Warehouse Markets With the Most Momentum & More

The Latest Commercial Real Estate News From Liberty SBF


The Government’s Divided, and That’s OK

Capitol building in Washington with reflection on water

Last Tuesday’s election has provided millions of hours of commentary from cable news anchors and their guests, but what did it mean for CRE? An article on Globe St. takes a look, and pulls out four key takeaways that can mostly be summed up as “we’ll probably be all right.”

Liberty Provides More Than $31 Million in Financing in the Northeast

Sports complex

Liberty SBF has provided over $31 million in SBA 504 financing for projects in the Northeast, including major projects in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. A major driver of all those loans has been in the industrial sector. Read our article on what makes for a hot industrial market.

SBA 504 Program Funds Over $4.75 Billion in FY2018

Two people shaking hands with a signed contract

The SBA announced its figures for FY2018 lending, revealing that the SBA 504 program provided nearly $5 billion in capital – in the form of 5,874 individual loans. The agency’s newly launched 25-year debenture is evidently popular, fueling more than 1,000 individual loans in under six months. What’s so great about this new loan? We’re glad you asked. Read what a 25-year term SBA 504 loan means for small businesses.

Sacramento CA, Dayton OH & Jacksonville FL Top List of Warehouse Markets With the Most Momentum

Empty warehouse with blue shelving

A recent report analyzed warehouse markets in the United States, in terms of three key growth factors, to identify the top growth markets in the sector. National Real Estate Investor turned that data into a slideshow, with 28 of the country’s fastest-growing warehouse markets.

Liberty Provides $30+ Million for Warehouse Projects

Warehouse exterior with truck docked

Liberty offers SBA 504 financing for small business warehouse acquisitions in all 50 states. Over the past three years, we’ve provided more than $30 million in financing for warehouse projects in New Jersey, California, Georgia and Pennsylvania alone!

Investors See Opportunity in Medical Space

Doctor shaking hands with businessman

In a recent piece, REIT analyst Richard Anderson breaks down what he sees as a common thread between strategies recently announced by three of the industry’s biggest players: a focus on medical office space. It’s no wonder when recent studies have shown that demand for this specialty real estate class is expected to quickly outstrip supply. Want to learn more about the enormous opportunity in the owner-occupied medical asset class? Read our latest article on the topic here.

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF is the #1 ranked non-bank SBA 504 lender by volume in the country. We offer personal service for SBA 504, bridge and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk. 


News Roundup: Politics & CRE, a Self-Storage Boom and Soaring Demand for Small-Business Lending

The Latest Commercial Real Estate News From Liberty SBF


Political Races for Commercial Real Estate Pros to Watch

Red and blue voting boxes with American flag

As America heads to the ballot box tomorrow to decide the makeup of Congress for the next two years, Commercial Observer put together a list of races whose outcomes will have a direct effect on commercial real estate markets. Take a look, then keep a slightly more informed eye on results tomorrow evening.

Liberty Provides More than $14.2 Million in Health Care Financing in 2018

Medical facility with palm trees

Recently, Liberty provided $1.2 million in financing for a medical facility in Miami, FL. That brings SBA 504 health care facility financing totals to over $14 million for 2018 alone.

Self-Storage Is Booming – and NOLA Is Leading the Way

Self Storage facility with combination lock in foreground

The self-storage industry has outpaced the broader economy, growing 4.5% annually in recent years, and adding $4 billion in new storage spaces over the last year. And nowhere is that boom more obvious than in New Orleans, where more than 1 million sq. ft. of self-storage space is currently under construction.

REITs Outperform the Market

Wall street sign with building and flags

Ever-positive analysts have had to break out their euphemisms for stock market losses over the past few weeks, some even admitting that we may be seeing the early stages of a “correction.” But, despite that “volatility,” Bisnow reports that REITs have been outperforming the rest of the market, painting a positive picture for at least one sector.

Liberty Provides $23+ Million in Financing to Projects in California

California state graphic

Liberty is a nationwide provider of SBA 504 loans, but over the last two years, we’ve financed more than $23 million for projects in the state of California alone, including projects in Newport Beach, Imperial, San Diego and Riverside.

Small Business Lending Demand Up Significantly

Small business owner coffee maker

The conclusion from the latest Thomson Reuters / PayNet Small Business Lending Index? Small businesses are doing well, and are under low financial stress. As a result, they’re investing in growth, driving demand for small business loans up 16% from last year.

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF is the #1 ranked non-bank SBA 504 lender by volume in the country. We offer personal service for SBA 504, bridge and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk. 


News Roundup: SBA 504 Momentum Continues, Healthcare & CRE Landscape, Industrial Vacancy at Lowest since 2000


SBA 504 Momentum Continues in 2018

Woman small business owner

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, the SBA 504 loan program has experienced another strong year in 2018, granting 5,874 small business loans for a total of more than $4.75 billion. The introduction of the 25-year Debenture in April has also been successful, with more than 1,000 debentures sold by the end of September.

Liberty SBF is Expanding Nationwide

Teamwork - all hands in

Liberty SBF is growing. We recently doubled our inside sales teams on both coasts, brought on expert originators from all over the country, and hired a National Director of Originations.

Industrial Real Estate Vacancy at Lowest Since 2000

Warehouse exterior dock with trucks

Thanks to ongoing demand for warehouses in the industrial/logistics sector, industrial real estate has experienced its 33rd straight quarter of declining vacancy. According to a recent CBRE report, the national industrial vacancy rate is 7.2%—its lowest since the year 2000.

Who Gets the Credit for Industrial Demand?

Warehouse aisle with fork lift

While many attribute robust industrial real estate demand to booming e-commerce, the reality is that food & beverage, logistics, packaging and manufacturing sectors are important players, particularly in markets like Southern California, GlobeSt reports.

Liberty Provides $14.2 Million in SBA 504 Loans for Healthcare

Medical facility with palm trees

Liberty has provided $14.2 million in SBA 504 loans for the acquisitions of a medical facility in Miami, Florida, and a skilled nursing facility in Tucson, Arizona.

Health Care and the Commercial Real Estate Landscape

Medical facility waiting room

When it comes to healthcare, people are increasingly shifting from traditional hospital care to smaller, community outpatient clinics. How does that impact commercial real estate? Commercial Property Executive shares a clip exploring this trend and from the recent CREW Network meeting in San Diego.

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF is the #1 ranked non-bank SBA 504 lender by volume in the country. We offer personal service for SBA 504, bridge and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk. 


$12.9M Healthcare Facility Closes With Liberty SBA 504 Loan

Sapphire of Tucson Nursing & Rehab.

A skilled nursing home in Tucson, AZ, recently closed with the help of $12.9 million in financing from Liberty SBF. Liberty provided both the $8 million SBA 504 first loan and a $4.9 million interim loan to allow the transaction to proceed while the CDC portion of SBA 504 loan is being completed. Sapphire of Tucson Nursing & Rehab is the area’s only privately owned skilled nursing facility.

Originally built in 1983, The Property is located in Southwest Tucson, six miles southeast of downtown Tucson and four miles north of the Tucson International Airport. A strong network of regional hospitals is located within 10 miles of the Property, including Banner University Medical Center, a 227-licensed bed comprehensive medical center located 500 feet away. In addition, the Property is located five miles northwest of the Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. Except for the Arizona State Veteran Home-Tucson (120-beds), the subject is the only skilled nursing facility within the southern Tuscan market and benefits from demand generated by the families of Air Force Base Personnel and of businesses that support the Base.

The owners have over 20+ years of experience in long term care facilities. As of June 2018, they own six facilities, with a total value of $97.1MM.

How Can We Help You?

Liberty SBF is the #1 ranked non-bank SBA 504 lender by volume in the country. We offer personal service for SBA 504, bridge and conventional loans. We’d love to help you.

Let’s Talk.