An assignment of rents and leases is an agreement between the owner of a particular property and a designated second party. The terms and conditions allow that second party to collect any rental payments paid by tenants and to manage that property for a period of time. This type of arrangement is most commonly utilized to settle a loan or some sort of credit extended by the second party to the property owner, and remains in effect until the debt is settled in full.
For the duration of the assignment of rents, the property owner remains the owner of record for the property. There is no transfer of title, although the lender is usually given the privilege of managing the property as he or she sees fit. This means that for the duration of the agreement, the lender can use part of the collected proceeds to maintain the property, while applying the remainder of the collected rent payments toward the outstanding balance of the loan amount.
Choosing to create an assignment of rents usually takes place because the property owner is in need of a quick infusion of resources for some reason. Rather than going with a loan and simply using the property as collateral, the assignment of rents effectively allows the property owner to borrow against future income, which is realized as tenants make regular rental payments. As with any type of loan situation, there is a rate of interest applied to the outstanding balance, with a portion of each month’s proceeds going to retire a part of the principle as well as some of the interest due.
The benefit to the property owner is that loans with this stipulation often carry very competitive rates of interest. This means that over the life of the loan, the owner is likely to pay much less interest on the loan installments. Since an assignment of rents can easily be structured between two individuals, there is also the advantage of not having to go through a bank or mortgage company at all. If the property owner can find an angel lender who is willing to advance money now and receive payments back from the rental proceeds each month, the paperwork is kept to a minimum, and the owner can receive the advance of funds almost immediately.
It is not unusual for an assignment of rents to also contain clauses that protect the interests of both the property owner and the lender. These provisions give the lender protection in the event that the collected rentals slip below a certain point due to vacancies. At the same time, the owner is protected from the lender attempting to gain ownership of the property as long as the monthly payments amount to a minimum figure.