4 Best Hard Money Lenders in Hawaii


Hard money lenders in Hawaii are available to support investors looking for private money financing.

Key Terms

  • Hard money loans are private money loans that provide investors with an opportunity to obtain money to buy hard-to-finance properties, including fix and flip properties, commercial real estate development, rental properties, and others.
  • For many, hard money lenders in Hawaii can provide competitively priced loans that make it easier for borrowers to secure the funds they need to buy a property quickly, even though those rates may be higher than other loans.
  • Many hard money loans in Hawaii are short term loans, lasting between 1 and 5 years, with the expectation of the sale or refinancing of the property after that point.

Hawaii may be known for its beautiful tropical weather and high quality of life, but the state has much to offer both those who plan to live here and those looking for investment property in the area. The state is home to about 1.4 million people who are spread across eight main islands, along with some volcanoes. The area is one of the biggest tourist destinations in the U.S. and all of North America. Surfers, scientists, those who love the ocean, and those seeking a natural wonder come to this region and enjoy all parts of Hawaii from Honolulu to Hilo. Hawaii is also considered the third wealthiest state, which is due in part to its high cost of living and just how far away it is from the mainland.

For those who plan to buy a home in Hawaii, it is very important to get to know the area well, as there is a significant range of values from one region to the next. Overall, the median sale price of a home in Hawaii is $563,000, which is much higher than most other areas of the country. And while that may be the case, there are numerous areas that have a home value that is much lower than this. Home values are high here due to the number of large estates and affluent properties, as well as the area’s limited home inventory. That has helped to boost home values over the years.

The U.S. Census Bureau states that only 58.3% of people in the state own the property they live in, and 41.7% rent their homes. This is one of the highest rental percentages in the country, and it indicates just how important rental real estate is to the region. The information available also indicates that 5.4% of rentals in the state are vacant. That could mean that there is a lot of room for growth among home buyers who want to own an investment property.

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How hard money loans work

A hard money loan in Hawaii could provide home buyers with a way to secure real estate, such as fix and flip homes, bridge loan needs, and other commercial real estate development and investment needs. These loans are designed to help investors and other borrowers like flippers obtain homes that tend to be a bit harder to finance through conventional loans like construction loans or commercial loans. These are asset-backed loans. That means that the properties are fully backed by the value of the home. If the borrower were to default on the loan, the lender could pursue the foreclosure process to recoup some of its investment.

Private money lenders in Hawaii set the terms and conditions for the loans they offer. These lenders could be individual borrowers, or they could be financial investment companies. They often offer short-term loans, those that are only for 1 to 5 years. It is expected that investors will sell the home within that time or refinance it after the value has improved.

One of the key factors about hard money loans in Hawaii is that they often have a higher interest rate than other types of real estate loans. That is due to the increased risk that the lender must take on when offering these loans. That risk relates to the high rate of default that is common with these loans. However, they are for a short term which makes using them to purchase an investment property a good idea.

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4 Top Hawaii hard money lenders

Some lenders only offer hard money loans to experienced investors, while other programs can lend to those that are pursuing their first real estate investment.

1. EquityMax

EquityMax is based out of Florida and most of its business in the state but is able to lend throughout the United States. Founded by Brad Emmer in 1990, EquityMax has decades of experience as a hard money lender.

We reached out to EquityMax to learn more about their hard money loans and these are the key highlights that you need to know:

  • Single Family residential properties
  • 1-4 Multi-Unit Properties
  • Condos and Townhomes ok
  • Commercial property types and Industrial Warehouses OK
  • Direct lender that has decision making over financing deals.
  • Can originate loans to individuals, LLCs, corporations, land trusts and self-directed IRAs.
  • No prepayment penalties
  • No minimum credit score required

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

2. LendSimpli

LendSimpli is a hard money lender based in Tampa, Florida. They can lend nationally in most states but may not be able to lend if the property is in a rural area. Founded by Brenden Crampton and Matthew Davies in 2018, they have nearly four years of experience in the private lending real estate investing market.

We reached out to LendSimpli to get more details about their bridge loan product and this is what we found:

  • Loan amounts up to $5 million for 1-4 unit properties
  • Loan amounts up to $20 million for 5+ unit properties
  • Single family (1-4 units)
  • Multifamily (5-20 units)
  • No owner-occupied properties
  • Loan terms 12-24 months
  • Interest-only payments with rates starting at 8.50%
  • Max LTC is 90% of project costs
  • Minimum credit score is 660
  • Prefer that you have at least two transactions in the past three years

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

3. HouseMax Funding

HouseMax Funding is based out of Austin, Texas but has a national footprint when it comes to real estate industry lending. Started by Jeff Fetcher and Alex Morris, HouseMax provides asset-based loan financing to investors for real estate transactions.

We reached out to HouseMax to learn more about their hard money lending program and here is what we found:

  • Minimum loan amount is $75,000
  • Lends up to 75% of the after-repair value (APV)
  • 1-3 points origination charge
  • 3 months reserves required
  • Direct lender that approves loans internally and funds using their own private capital.
  • Lends in urban and suburban communities in all 50 states.
  • Goal is to close loans in 10 days or less.
  • Specializes in fix & flip loans, ground-up construction and rental loans
  • Multi-family and commercial properties are ok

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

4. Stratton Equities

Stratton Equities is a nationwide direct hard money lender for real estate investors. Founded by Michael Mikhail in 2017, Stratton Equities has over five years of experience in the private lending market.

We reached out to Stratton Equities to get more information about their hard money lending program and here are some highlights:

  • Loan amounts from $100,000 up to $5 million
  • Investment properties only
  • Single-Family, Condos, Townhomes, Multi-Family, Commercial, Mixed-Use, Office, Retail, Industrial and Warehouse are all ok
  • Up to a 75% LTV
  • Rates start at 7.25%
  • Interest only payments
  • Loan terms are 9-24 months
  • Foreign nationals are eligible
  • No prepayment penalty option is available

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

What are the main advantages of a Hawaii hard money loan?

A Hawaii hard money loan is an opportunity for borrowers to obtain the funds they need to buy, fix, and flip homes or to turn property into rental income. These are not long term loans, but they do offer a few key benefits.

One of those benefits is that the value of them is based on the after repair value of the home. This is often much higher than the value of the home in its current condition, especially in fix and flip homes where the home may need a significant amount of renovation. If the home’s after repair value is high, that could give lenders a bit more confidence that the home is worth the investment.

Another key opportunity is that hard money lenders in Hawaii typically can close on the loan much faster than what can occur with a traditional mortgage lender. Most conventional loans take 60 to 90 days to close. That is a long time for most investors. Hard money loans in Hawaii can typically close in under a month and sometimes much shorter.

There are regulations and eligibility requirements that borrowers have to meet, but they tend to be far less stringent than what is likely on traditional loans. That means that many of today’s investors are able to purchase the home they want to renovate quickly, renovate it to meet their needs, and then sell it without having to spend a lot of money or time on inspections or meeting federal regulations. Down payment and credit score requirements may also be a bit more lenient on some of these loans than on others as well, further making it possible for borrowers to benefit from using Hawaii hard money loans instead of traditional conventional loans.

If you’re looking to explore hard money in other states, check out our national overview of hard money lenders as a starting point in your search.

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Joshua Holt

Joshua Holt is a licensed mortgage loan originator (NMLS #2306824) and founder of Biglaw Investor. His mortgage expertise lies in the areas of professional mortgage loans, particularly for lawyers, doctors and other high-income professionals. Prior to Biglaw Investor, Josh practiced private equity mergers & acquisition law for one of the largest law firms in the country.

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