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  • Writer's pictureColin Dubel

What are 'Cap Rates' and How do they Affect Down Payments and Terms on Purchases?

In commercial real estate investing, a cap rate (short for capitalization rate) is a ratio used to estimate the potential return on an investment property. The cap rate is calculated by dividing the property's net operating income (NOI) by its current market value or purchase price.


The cap rate is expressed as a percentage, and it provides an indication of how much income an investor can expect to receive from a property based on the purchase price. For example, if a property generates an NOI of $100,000 per year and has a purchase price of $1 million, the cap rate would be 10% ($100,000/$1,000,000).


When it comes to commercial mortgage down payments and loan terms, cap rates play a significant role in determining the amount of financing that a lender will provide. Generally, lenders prefer to lend to properties with lower cap rates because they are seen as less risky. This is because a property with a lower cap rate is generating more income relative to its value, which means that it is likely to provide a more stable return on investment.


As a result, if a property has a high cap rate, a lender may require a larger down payment and may offer less favorable loan terms to compensate for the higher risk. On the other hand, if a property has a low cap rate, a lender may require a smaller down payment and may offer more favorable loan terms.


In summary, cap rates are an important factor in commercial real estate investing as they provide an indication of a property's potential return on investment. When it comes to securing financing for an acquisition purchase, cap rates can impact the amount of down payment required and the loan terms offered by lenders.


If you have any questions about this article or would like to discuss a scenario of your own with our team, please feel free to contact Colin Dubel at colin@harborwestcommercial.com or 949-735-6415.

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