September 11

What is a good DSCR for commercial real estate?


If you're considering investing in commercial real estate or already have a stake in this lucrative market, understanding the Debt Service Coverage Ratio (DSCR) is crucial. DSCR plays a vital role in determining the financial health of your investment and its ability to generate income to cover debt payments. In this blog post, we'll dive into the world of DSCR, explore what constitutes a good DSCR for commercial real estate, and when to consider it in your financing decisions.

What is DSCR?

DSCR, or Debt Service Coverage Ratio, is a financial metric used by lenders to assess the risk associated with providing a loan for a commercial property. It measures the property's ability to generate enough income to cover its debt obligations, including interest and principal payments. A higher DSCR indicates better financial health and a lower risk for lenders.

DSCR for Different Types of Properties

In the video transcript by Beau Eckstein, host of the Investor Financing Podcast, he addresses a question about DSCR loans for commercial real estate. Here are some key takeaways from his explanation:

1. DSCR for One to Four Unit Non-Owner Occupied Properties

DSCR loans are commonly used for one to four unit non-owner occupied properties. These loans are designed to assess the income generated by smaller residential properties, such as rental homes or duplexes.

2. DSCR for Commercial Properties with Five Units and Above

For commercial properties with five units and above, there is a specific DSCR product available. This product is tailored to evaluate the income potential of larger multifamily and commercial properties.

3. DSCR Similarity to Single Family Rental Properties

The DSCR product for commercial properties with five to twenty units is similar to the DSCR used for single-family rental properties. This means that the evaluation criteria for these property types share similarities, making it easier for investors to understand the assessment process.

4. Larger Property Financing Options

For larger commercial properties, such as those in the million-dollar range, DSCR may still be relevant, but other financing options like bank debt might be considered. The availability of DSCR loans for larger properties might be limited, and the loan-to-value ratios could be less aggressive compared to smaller properties.

5. Factors Influencing Financing Decisions

When deciding whether to use a DSCR loan or explore alternative financing options, several factors come into play. These factors include the property's occupancy level, the possibility of using credit union debt or bank debt, and even considering bridge loans or agency debt through Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.


In conclusion, a good DSCR for commercial real estate depends on various factors, including the type and size of the property, its income-generating potential, and the investor's financing goals. While DSCR is a valuable metric for assessing a property's financial health, it's essential to consider the broader context and explore alternative financing options when dealing with larger commercial properties. As you navigate the world of commercial real estate, understanding DSCR and its implications can help you make informed investment decisions and secure financing that aligns with your objectives.


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