T here are times when a lender is going to ask for additional [real estate] collateral in order to make a borrower a loan. The most likely scenario for this is when there is not enough equity in the target property. Other scenarios include a borrower with less than stellar credit, or the type or quality of the target property may not be enough to satisfy the lender to make the loan, as most lenders are more interested in making loans that will pay them back instead of facing foreclosures. For this reason, the lender may ask the borrower to put up additional collateral satisfactory to the lender so as to give the borrower an incentive to avoid defaulting on the loan. In many cases, this cross collateralization may not be something the borrower worries about, as the borrower intends to pay the lender in full. The general plan is for the borrower to refinance the target property at a point where a new lender does not require cross collateralization, pay off the existing lender, and the existing lender releases both properties; however, what happens when the borrower sells the crossed property, or has the opportunity to refinance the target property, and there is not enough to pay off the current lender who crossed? The danger here is that the lender may hold up the sale because it does not want to release their lien until they are paid in full. For example, let’s say the borrower owns a rental house that is worth $500,000 and there is a first mortgage in place for $200,000. The borrower wants to buy another rental for $800,000 and has $250,000 to put as a down payment. The borrower asks a lender to loan the remaining needed $550,000, but the lender is not comfortable with the LTV [68.75%], so the lender asks what other real estate the borrower owns, so it can cross collateralize its $550,000 loan. The borrower mentions the other rental, and the lender decides to ask for crossing on the first rental. Thus, the lender has lowered its risk because of the equity in the first rental. Now, let’s say that the borrower receives an unsolicited offer for the first rental of $525,000, and he wishes to accept it. If there was no cross collateral against this property, the borrower could accept the offer, pay off the existing first of $200,000, and pocket the $325,000 remainder. However, because the rental has been crossed, the lender has 16 $550,000 against the property in second position. That means that there is technically $750,000 of liens showing up against the property. The borrower cannot accept the $525,000 offer without having the second [the crossed loan] release its lien. For this reason, it is imperative for there to be an agreed upon release price in which the lender agrees ahead of time to release its interest in either properties for a specific sum. It does not necessarily have to be just the remaining equity in the first sale [$325,000 in our example]. The release price could be a smaller amount. It could also be a larger amount [up to what the lender is owed]. If the lender desires more than the $325,000, the borrower would have to come up with additional cash in order to transact the sale. This may not be all bad, as the crossed lender’s loan has then been reduced.