Fairfield Financial Services, Inc. - Private Money Loans, Lending & Borrowing

Private money lending - general

Getting started with private money investing

Thursday, October 25th, 2018

Clay Sparkman
I am frequently asked by private money investors: “… so how do we get started investing in private money loans?”  You know, there is no simple answer to this question. I tell them that it is kind of like dating. If we are going to do this as an investor/broker team, then they need to [...]

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A book that we must read

Thursday, January 19th, 2017

Clay Sparkman
This book strikes me as a must read for anyone in the lending business. I have not read it yet, but I intend to get started now. Have any of you read it, and if so, what was your take away?
Here
The Unbanking of America: How the New Middle Class Survives
Lisa Servon. Houghton Mifflin [...]

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Resources for private money profesionals

Friday, January 6th, 2017

Clay Sparkman
I posted this article in 2011, and am sad to say that I haven’t come across much in the way of new resources since. I’m going to re-post, with a few small changes, and please let me know if you know of any useful resources available to private money professionals.

These days–with uncertain markets—tools and [...]

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Private money for maijuana grow and sell operations

Thursday, December 29th, 2016

Clay Sparkman
Good article in the Los Angeles Times:
Lending money to pot businesses is a high-risk move: ‘This is not for the faint of heart’
A few years back, this was starting to look like a pretty good place to consider investing your private money. Several things were favorable: (1) The general trend nationwide was clearly toward [...]

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Examining an FAQ about Trust Deed investing

Tuesday, December 20th, 2016

S. Clay Sparkman
TNG (The Norris Group) published the following FAQ on their site. I thought it might be fun to go through this and see where I agree and perhaps disagree, and offer my annotations (in red).
Frequently Asked Questions About Trust Deed Investing
1. What is a trust deed investor?
A trust deed investor is a person [...]

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Twenty-eight questions you must ask

Friday, October 7th, 2016

Clay Sparkman
I first wrote and published this piece in its original form in September of 2009. I am of the firm belief that the key to success (defined as: having fun and maximizing your return, two closely correlated phenomena), is rigorous and comprehensive vetting of the loan proposal. If you do this right, the rest [...]

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A guide for private money lenders

Thursday, July 14th, 2016

Clay Sparkman
I thought that this set of blog posts, A Guide For Private Money Lenders (in four parts), by Thad Merrill, was both interesting and informative, and so I thought I’d share them with you. (Ever vigilant: I’m combing the web for you.)

http://www.fortunebuilders.com/becoming-private-money-lender-part-1/
http://www.fortunebuilders.com/becoming-private-money-lender-part-2-breaking-private-money-loan/
http://www.fortunebuilders.com/becoming-private-money-lender-part-3-attract-investors/
http://www.fortunebuilders.com/private-hard-money-lenders-part-4/
Best, Clay
- Clay (clay@privatemoneysource.com, 503-476-2909)
Clay is Vice President of Fairfield Financial, a primary [...]

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Fairfield Financial – Information for investors

Friday, July 8th, 2016

Clay Sparkman
Here is our *Information for Investors* section. It is direct and to the point. It tells you what you can expect of us and what we will expect to you, in a broker-relationship.

http://www.privatemoneysource.com/investors.php
Best, Clay
- Clay (clay@privatemoneysource.com, 503-476-2909)
Clay is Vice President of Fairfield Financial, a primary source [...]

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Private money – the rules of physics may not apply

Friday, June 3rd, 2016

Clay Sparkman
I first posted this article in August of 2009. That was right about when I was just getting started with the blog. It is hard to believe that it has been nearly seven years now. At any rate, I feel that this article deserves a second look (or a first look, if you are [...]

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25 questions you must ask

Friday, January 22nd, 2016

Clay Sparkman
I originally published this article in September of 2009 on this blog.
I’m going to make a list today of twenty-five important questions that I believe an investor must ask prior to funding any private money loan transaction.  I’m not going to elaborate much on each particular item here, but will drill down on each [...]

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Auto-private-money-fractional-lending

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

Clay Sparkman
This is an interesting blog post.
http://www.mymoneyblog.com/realty-mogul-review.html
It tells about a new site where you can go to make $5k private money fractional loans automatically, without the bother of actually dealing with a broker, borrower, or such. Apparently you don’t have to even bother making any decisions about the investment. That might be nice, except …!
Well [...]

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Finding qualified commercial private money borrowers

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

Clay Sparkman
This item was originally posted on this site on 4/30/10. I had a sense that it might be relevant once again, and so I have rewritten it slightly and am posting here again. I hope you find it useful.
Most private money investors choose to work with brokers.  However it is a decision that each [...]

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Loans we are placing – example

Friday, April 5th, 2013

S. Clay Sparkman
Every now and then I like to present one of the loans that we have placed or are in the process of placing, so that blog readers can see (a) the types of loans that we are placing, and (b) how we feel that loans should be presented. Keep in mind that this [...]

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Twnety-five questions you must ask (re-post)

Friday, February 22nd, 2013

Clay Sparkman
I originally published this article on this blog in September of 2009. It is as relevant ans useful, I believe, today as it was then.

I’m going to make a list today of twenty-five important questions that I believe an investor must ask prior to funding any private money loan transaction.  I’m not [...]

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Where do you go to learn about private money lending?

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

Clay Sparkman
I can’t tell you how many times I have been asked by prospective private money investors, “Where do I go to learn more about this? Where are the books? Where are the articles? where are the websites”
I have generally had to shrug my shoulders and say, “Uh …. you know, I really [...]

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Private Money FAQ

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

Clay Sparkman
I try to update and publish this FAQ every once in awhile, as it is a handy guide to better understanding the market for private money loans in general–and more particularly, how we operate here at FFS. It is written more with brokers and borrowers in mind, but the information here should [...]

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Everything you wanted to know about private money but were afraid to ask

Thursday, January 12th, 2012

Clay Sparkman
(Note: I posted the following on my broker blog recently. It is oriented to toward brokers, but at the same time, I think it would be quite useful to those trying to get a handle on investing in private money loans and trying to better understand the process.)
Private money is often [...]

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A good time for private money investing (or so we think)

Monday, September 19th, 2011

Clay Sparkman
We’ve been getting quite a few calls from new investors lately who are interested in investing in trust deed secured loans. This makes a certain amount of sense to me, as a number of factors are lining up to enhance the attractiveness of this type of investing. The factors I have in mind include [...]

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Squeezing loans into the box (by thinking outside the box)

Thursday, March 17th, 2011

Clay Sparkman
As you all know, sometimes we have to be creative to get loans done in this market. One of the most critical aspects of any loan (as you well know) is the Loan to Value ratio, and there are often options for reducing the LTV to make the deal more attractive.
For purchases, the seller [...]

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Private loan packaging guidelines

Sunday, October 31st, 2010

Clay Sparkman
One of my long term objectives with this blog is to eventually walk with you through all of the private money loan processes and procedures, from the moment of conception until death (death of course not being a bad thing in my chosen metaphor, but simply meaning loan payoff, workout, or foreclosure).
This post deals [...]

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What does this mean to us?

Sunday, October 3rd, 2010

Clay Sparkman
Okay, I don’t know about you, but whenever I read news about some new development in the real estate market, my first instinct is to say, “What does this mean to me?”  Hey I’m not proud of it, but that’s just how I’m wired.
This past two weeks we read that:
(1)  GMAC and JPMorgan Chase [...]

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Grumblings of a slum lord in the post-bust environment

Friday, September 24th, 2010

Guest post by Brian Blum, Operating Manager, Maverick Structures LLC
I’m a real estate investor.  I see opportunities in buildings – and in numbers, and I use those opportunities to create income and equity.  What I do benefits society, but I’m not going to lie to you – I am driven to do it for my [...]

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The sweet spot

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

Clay Sparkman
We are always looking for the sweet spot these days in the real estate market.  And by sweet spot, I mean that realm of  investments that are on balance less risky and more likely to turn a profit in what is otherwise a jaded real estate market.
I have gone on a bit in my [...]

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A way to find qualified commercial borrowers – Lendicom.com

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Clay Sparkman
Most private money investors choose to work with brokers.  However it is a decision that each private money investor must make independently and with great care—to use or not to use a broker.
The essence of the matter I think is this.  If you want a full-time job (and some investors certainly do) then you [...]

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Getting started with private money – the dating thing

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

Clay Sparkman
I am frequently asked by private money investors:  “… so how do we get started investing in private money loans?”  You know, there is no simple answer to this question.  I tell them that it is kind of like dating.  If we are going to do this as an investor/broker team, then they need [...]

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A brief unofficial analysis of the private money market for investors

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

Clay Sparkman
The national economy is in a state of confusion and the local economy is in a state of confusion. So what does this mean for the market for investing in trust deed based loans?
Well of course nobody really knows–and this is just my take on it–but here goes:  First of all, let’s talk briefly [...]

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Private Money FAQ

Sunday, February 28th, 2010

Clay Sparkman
I realized early on that one of my greatest challenges in the private money lending business was to educate brokers, borrowers, and ultimately lenders regarding private money lending–what it is and when and how and when it should be used.  So many people know so little about it, and those who think they know [...]

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Trust deed lending – ten mistakes you should never make and ten mistakes you must never make

Saturday, December 19th, 2009

Clay Sparkman
Okay, first the ten mistakes you should never make:
(1)    Never close a loan without title insurance.
(2)    Never close a loan on property that has valuable structures without a valid hazard insurance policy in effect listing you or your entity as loss payee.
(3)    Never close a loan leaving property taxes unpaid (unless you are fully [...]

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Private money through the looking glass

Sunday, November 22nd, 2009

Clay Sparkman
First off, I’d like to point you to a list of 37 private money investment tips posted by Brad Evans of Brad Evans Real Estate Loans.  This list has been circulating on the net for quite a few years now.  It is one of the more thoughtful comprehensive items that I have come across [...]

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The private money lending business: likes and gripes (part III)

Monday, October 19th, 2009

Clay Sparkman
I finished Part II with a brief mention of something I quite like about the trust deed system: that is, the option (generally available) to foreclose judicially.
Before moving on, I’d like to offer you a crude little decision tree which may guide investors in making the decision whether to foreclose a given trust deed [...]

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The private money lending business: likes and gripes (part II)

Saturday, October 3rd, 2009

Clay Sparkman
In Part I, I began a discussion of my gripes and likes regarding the private money lending business and various industry related matters, items, and issues.  I allowed myself to amble a bit far afield and concluded by mentioning a book about the legal profession which I personally found to be informing and entertaining.  [...]

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The private money lending business: likes and gripes (part I)

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

Clay Sparkman
I thought it would be kind of fun, and hopefully informative, to write a piece about my likes and gripes regarding the business of private money lending.  In other words, these are the things that tend to kick start my emotions and get me going.  There is a bit of free association going on [...]

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Twenty-five questions you must ask

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

Clay Sparkman
I’m going to make a list today of twenty-five important questions that I believe an investor must ask prior to funding any private money loan transaction.  I’m not going to elaborate much on each particular item here, but will drill down on each of the individual items in future posts.  For the sake [...]

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Resources – where is all the good stuff?

Sunday, August 30th, 2009

Clay Sparkman

As I continue my search for resources that might be useful to those who invest in real estate secured loans, I become increasingly convinced that our particular niche field is somewhat of an intellectual/informational wasteland.  Every time I stumble upon an article or site that looks like it might be of interest, it [...]

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