Institutional financing is not available so developers are looking outside the box to fund their projects. The most common form of favorable financing is JV. This financing comes in more shapes, sizes, and terms than colors of the rainbow. There are, however, a few common things that all JV funders look for, regardless of the project, location or dollar amount. The purpose of this article is to share with you what these common denominators are and how you should present your project to get the most favorable terms.
Let’s look at this from your potential funder’s perspective. What does he want? The answer is simple, but arriving at achieving his goals involves a tremendous amount of scrutiny and due diligence on you, the developer. Quite simply, the JV funder wants a return on his investment. You must speak his language. What he wants is a pro forma that shows what his internal rate of return (IRR) is at two and five years. If you cannot prepare one of these, find someone who can. This document or spreadsheet shows vision and the common goal of making money.
Everything else is secondary, but also very important. You need to prepare a package that consists of the following items:
- an executive summary of the project that is no more than 5 pages (no funder will read a 120 page business plan before reading an executive summary)
- the proforma
- bios and resumes of all of the key players, including your contractors
- the entire business plan
- an appraisal if you have one
Logically, the funder has the money. You have to prove that you have the brains, muscle and integrity to be a great and cooperative partner. Your opportunity is not the only one on his desk, but it will certainly be the most presentable. Sloppy presentations make for sloppy projects.Finally, the worst thing you can do is put pressure on the funder to act or fund immediately. Desperation only indicates weakness and poor planning.
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