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  • Eric Scharaga

Why are Land Notes Discounted?

Land notes, also known as land contracts or seller-financed notes, are a form of owner financing used in real estate transactions. They allow a buyer to purchase property from a seller without going through a traditional bank or lender. Instead, the seller acts as the lender, and the buyer makes payments to the seller over time. However, in many cases, land notes are discounted. In this blog post, we'll explore why land notes are often discounted and what factors can impact their discount rate.


One of the primary reasons that land notes are discounted is risk. When a seller finances a property sale, they are taking on the risk that the buyer may default on their payments. If the buyer stops making payments, the seller may need to foreclose on the property and sell it to recoup their investment. Foreclosing on a property can be a lengthy and expensive process, and there is no guarantee that the property will sell for enough to cover the outstanding balance on the land note. To account for this risk, land notes are often discounted.

Interest Rates

Another factor that can impact the discount rate of a land note is interest rates. If interest rates are high, buyers may be less likely to take on a land note with a high interest rate. This can make it more difficult for the seller to find a buyer, which can lead to the land note being discounted.

Loan Term

The length of the loan term can also impact the discount rate of a land note. If the loan term is long, the seller may need to wait a long time to receive full payment for the property. This can increase the risk of default and lead to a higher discount rate. On the other hand, if the loan term is short, the seller may be willing to accept a lower discount rate because they will receive payment more quickly.

Market Conditions

Finally, market conditions can impact the discount rate of a land note. If there is a surplus of land in a particular area, sellers may need to offer a higher discount rate to attract buyers. On the other hand, if there is high demand for land in a particular area, sellers may be able to sell land notes at a lower discount rate.

In conclusion, land notes are often discounted due to risk, interest rates, loan term, and market conditions. By understanding these factors, buyers and sellers can make informed decisions about land note transactions and ensure that they receive fair value for their investments.



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