This is one of my most popular blog topics being repeated many times but with a different way to explain this new concept each time. Many new way of explanations were in fact inspired by many questions raised by my blog viewers.
In the current practices of our Western banking industry and our real estate investment industry until today, people always use the property directly as a collateral to borrow money to purchase and own a real estate property. Tax codes were also often designed by the lawmakers to give preferential treatments to investors who have borrowed using the property as a collateral to invest.
As far as the equity sharing or shared equity concept goes, it is usually a common practice in commercial property investments rather than residential real estate investments such as home purchases. This is due to the fact that commercial investment projects are either of a larger investment amount or they are usually made for investment purposes only. Unlike commercial properties, many purchase decisions of homes are made more for sheltering reasons. Home owners could also afford to own the home directly without other investors’ help since the investment amounts are usually smaller when compared with commercial property investments. In addition, home owners usually have a natural desire to have a full control of the property.
The problem with using the property as the collateral to borrow in the old shared equity property financing method of Pool-Borrow-Buy (PBB) is that if the property value declines, it may automatically trigger a massive selling either voluntarily or involuntarily, which will feed on itself and create a market collapse. It makes no difference whether there are any equity sharing in the down payments or not. Foreclosures will happen either way and hell will break loose either way. The equity sharing concept as practiced in those old methods were therefore naturally deemed useless.
For commercial real estate market, foreclosures usually immediately create a economic problem. For home ownership or residential real estate market, it will present not only an economic problem, but also a severe social problem as well. These problems have been clearly illustrated in many of the financial crisis events within the past few years.
Therefore, sharing equity to qualify for borrowing or to borrow even more will not help much economically and contribute almost nothing socially to home ownership for our economic society. Unfortunately these SEM (Shared Equity Mortgage or Modification), SAM (Shared Appreciation Mortgage or Modification) or factional interest home equity investment schemes are exactly what have been touted by many other practitioners, governments and academics alike until today. Those structures will not solve our country’s home financing and home ownership problems socially or economically.
Governments who set up policies using those ill-advised methods (e.g. the original HAMP proposal in 2008) have only destroyed people’s confidence in the equity sharing concept to solve the problems and let the mortgage foreclosure problems deteriorate further day by day.
Why is FARJHO different? The differentiating concepts created by the new FARJHO (Flexible And Reversible Joint Home Ownership) structure are explained here below again.
First, it corporatizes home ownership one home at a time so that it will create a familiar and convenient legal vehicle for other investors to share the equity of the home property with the home occupier who is also a co-owner of the property.
Second, it offers the real estate investors a chance to use leveraging to enhance investment returns through a new Borrow-Pool-Buy (BPB) concept over the conventional Pool-Borrow-Buy (PBP) concept used in equity sharing methods which has been practiced until today for both commercial property investments and most of the other equity sharing schemes or some other proposed factional interest home equity investment and financing schemes.
By using this new BPB method, it means that the factional or partial owners in a home, either the Joint Property Investors (JPIs) or the Aspiring Home Owners (AHOs) could all have a choice to borrow against their individual member interests in the FARJHO LLC structure so that they could pool the money to purchase and own the home property in cash together. The AHO who will be the sole home occupier will simply pay the legal entity property owner FARJHO LLC a market based monthly rent as a usual tenant of the property.
When home ownership and housing finance practice have been transformed to this FARJHO way, pretty soon there would not be home foreclosures any more. It is really as simple as that! For more details on how this new BPB home financing method under FARJHO could be done, please see some of the earlier blog posts on this issue below. Thanks.