Yes you read that correctly. What ever you may read or hear in your market place, I am always pleased to report real world small business experience. Our corporate Headquarters five year balloon is due next month. We were talking to our primary commercial real estate bank, who is a large top 5 national player and were concerned about how the appraisal would come in and were not thrilled with the proposed terms 5/10 vs. a more favorable 5/15 to keep our payment lower (that means a 15 year amortization vs 10 year. Don't feel bad it takes a while to learn banker nomenclature). Since we work with so many banks we inquired about the terms with two other banks. One a regional ($13 billion in assets) and one larger community bank ($3 billion in assets). They both eagerly offered there input and inquired about an opportunity to present a proposal. With in two weeks we had three commitments that were very competitive.
I was amazed to see this competition in commercial real estate lending. It made me feel good with all the competitive bidding I have been losing in the last year and a half.
In the end the big bank came back with great terms (5/15 and a great interest rate). We will refi in a couple of weeks. Details to consider, this is a smaller loan ($500,000 to $1,000,000) and it is in Michigan. Another interesting thing about bad old Michigan is that we have only had three of the countless FDIC bank takeovers in the last 18 months.