Q: Do you know of anyone interested in financing an American Ingenuity Dome?
A: For Mortgage Financing contact:
The mortgage lender named HomePromise has contacted Aidomes and said that they will loan on the purchase and finishing of the Aidome building kit if the customer meets their loan guidelines. Please call 800-720-0250 for more information. Their corporate headquarters is located at 60 South Washington Street, Suite 106, Greencastle, PA 17225. We spoke with the President of HomePromise and learned:
- Says can do VA loans, if person qualifies
- Does not do construction loans hoping to do so in the future
- Says with good credit usually 20% down for traditional home mortgage based on the finished price of the dome, if can do VA possible 0% down
- In 15 states, including Florida, not in NC possibly within the next 1- 1 ½ years
- Regarding appraisals, uses other alternative housing comparables, and traditional homes to arrive at an appraisal figures for the mortgage
Regarding Construction loans which can be difficult to obtain, many clients look at alternative forms of financing, and convert to a mortgage loan once the dome is completed. Some ideas would be to borrow equity in a property already owned, borrowing from retirement funds, or securing a loan from family members.
HomePromise Corporation is licensed to do business in:
- California (Finance Lenders License Number 603B131 – Loans made or arranged pursuant to a California Finance Lenders Law License)
- Colorado (Mortgage Company Registration – Regulated by the Division of Real Estate)
- Connecticut (License Number ML-102836)
- Florida (Mortgage Lender Servicer License Number MLD156)
- Georgia (Mortgage Lender License 49479)
- Maryland (Mortgage Lender License 21584)
- Michigan (1st Mortgage Broker/Lender/Service License FL0020947)
- Minnesota (Residential Mortgage Originator License Number MNMO20581020)
- New Jersey (Residential Mortgage Lender License – Licensed by the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance)
- Ohio (Residential Mortgage Lending Act Certificate of Registration RM.804315.000)
- Oregon (Mortgage Lending License Number ML-5601)
- Pennsylvania (Mortgage Lender License Number 21566 – licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Banking)
- Tennessee (Mortgage License Number 109080)
- Virginia (NMLS ID# 102836 www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org)
- Washington (Consumer Loan Company License CL-102836). NMLS ID 102836
Financial Innovations Real Estate Corporation states they will loan on Aidomes for those that qualify. They have licenses in WA, PA, DC, KS, VA, CA, NJ, AR, KY and CT. They can issue a personal loan Nationwide to build the Aidome if the customer obtains the loan prior to issuance of certificate of occupancy. Their info is: Kareem Brathwaite, Founding Partner, Financial Innovations Real Estate Corporation 804-396-7575, email
Private Lender who states they will loan on American Ingenuity (Ai) Concrete domes:
James Monroe Capital Lending Services – James Monroe Capital Corp
Attn: James Keyes, Loan Director
Main Office: 4470 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles , CA 90027
Branch: 707 Skokie Blvd Suite 600 Northbrook, IL 60062
Office Hours in California: 9 am to 6 pm Pacific Time (there is no answer machine please call during their business hours)
Phone Number: 773-887-2117
Web site: To fill out loan application, click on http://www.guaranteedloanmoney.com/ and then click on Loan Application and complete the form listing that you are inquiring about loan to build an Aidome. The cash down payment varies from no cash down payment required to 10% to 20% down depending on your circumstances.
- 6% interest rate
- 80% to 100% LTV – (Loan to value) Depending on your circumstances, cash down payment can be none or 10% to 20% based on finished price of the project.
- No credit score.
Regions Mortgage has offices in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas. Below is Ms. Steeg’s info.
Jennie Lyn Steeg
Regions Mortgage - NMLS #0676223
Mortgage Loan Originator. 10245 Centurion Parkway N. Suite #300
Jacksonville Fl 32258
Phone: 904-564-3303; Cell 904-228-4004 Email: email@example.com
If you live in Burnsville North Carolina area and want financing for a finished Aidome, here is info on the closest Regions Bank Lender in Johnson City, TN that knows about Smart Solutions program for unique properties for that area. Please call Pasquanel (PJ) Bailey, and he will take your information and application. PJ will contact the Smart Solutions department to see if the loan can be issued. His number is 423-900-8782. His email is Pasquanel.firstname.lastname@example.org
Construction Loan is given to the Builder. Builder owns the lot, builds the dome and then sells the finished dome and the lot to the home owner.
Michael Maxwell, Head of Originations
55 E 58th St. Sixth Floor
NY, NY 10022
Phone: 212-466-3753. Mobile 646-620-4665. Email: email@example.com
Academy MGT Corporation
Phone: 305-603-9181. 305-325-5400 Email: Oscar.Sanchez@academymortgage.com
David Buffington, Mortgage Loan Officer
605 North Orlando Avenue
Orlando Fl 32789
Office 407-691-2150. Mobile 407-256-0015 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are in Florida contact Wauchula State Bank. In Spring 2018 they issued a loan on a 40 foot in diameter Aidome to be built in Highlands County Florida. They have branches in the following cities: Bowling Green (863) 375-2238; Lake Placid (863) 773-4151; Sebring (863) 471-1972; Winter Haven (863) 733-7010; Wauchula (863) 773-4151; and Zolfo Springs (863) 735-0200
Your local Wells Fargo Bank and explain that their Tukwila, WA branch and their branch in their Sioux Falls, SD have issued financing for Aidome building kits and see if they are interested in reviewing your info for a loan.
A Construction Loan was issued by AG South Farm Credit, ACA in Laurens, SC for Ai dome home to be built in the area because the dome buyer had rural ag land. Their number is 864-984-3379.
Purchase/Refinance Options are available through:
Sovann Kang, Branch Manager - nmls #275454
Umpqua Bank Home Lending
Web site: umpquabank.com/skang
In Lake Placid Florida - Highlands County - Wauchula State Bank at (863) 773-4151 approved a construction loan and permanent financing for an Aidome customer.
Ai has learned about LightStream’s Anything Loan, a division of SunTrust Bank. Not sure if they can assist you or not. LightStream’s Anything Loan is a virtually paperless loan that will let you finance or refinance almost anything. These loans are very customer friendly with these included features:
Fixed-interest rates range from 1.99% to 9.99%* APR with AutoPay
Loan amounts range from $5,000 to $100,000
No fees, down payment requirements or prepayment penalties
Apply online and receive a response within minutes during business hours
Unsecured, with no liens or collateral requirements for AnythingLoan. (Applicants that do not qualify for the AnythingLoan may qualify for our Secured Loan products).
- take out an equity line on property you own
- obtain a personal loan from family or friends (offering them a higher interest rate than banks, etc. are offering on money markets certificates, etc.)
Q: What is the resale value of American Ingenuity domes?
A: Ai knows of only a few of our dome owners who have sold their dome; which is a compliment in itself. Therefore, we have no resale statistics on our dome, but we have heard of other domes being sold at a profit well above their initial building cost. We can offer some insight that would apply.
- Geodesic domes being unusual, they will not appeal to everyone and it will likely take longer to find a buyer.
- Energy costs are certainly increasing and therefore a very energy efficient home will increase in value as energy costs increase.
- A conventional home will show its age as styles change while a new coat of paint on our dome will still look ahead of its time.
- Our sales of dome kits has constantly increased through the years and a quality dome that is completed would have the distinct sales advantage of showing the finished product.
- The resale value of a dome or any other home, is improved when it: a) matches the neighborhood in size and value; b) exhibits quality construction; c) is landscaped well; d) offers advantages over other homes.
Also, with the increasing popularity of domes and rising energy costs, the market for an exceptionally energy efficient, super strong, low maintenance home should be excellent. A large percentage of the home buyers cannot visualize a dome & do not want to be involved in the floor plan design & construction of their home. As a result a finished dome that can be touched and felt is a big plus to them. If you are thinking of resale, build at least a 40’ in diameter dome, have it built with quality workmanship & keep your utility bills.
Q: Will it be difficult to get a loan to build my dome?
A: Yes, conventional mortgage lenders tend to be ultra conservative when considering a dome. Mortgage brokers or indirect sources for financing may be more flexible and quicker for you. Refinancing other property or acquiring loans from other sources may be easier while avoiding the restrictions and requirements of conventional construction loans. Another popular option is the pay-as-you-go method. Combined with partial financing, this can get you into your new dome. For a helpful, in depth look at financing, click on this page Financing Your Dome.
Why do lenders not like domes? Lenders determine how much they will loan based on what houses in that neighborhood sell for. The lender can usually get within three to four per cent of the value of a conventional house. But because we do not have resale statistics on domes they do not know what the resale price is. The lender has to be concerned with the worst case scenario. Typically they want 20% to 30% down based on the finished price of the dome. However Sovann Kang can issue permanent financing with 10% or less cash down payment for those who qualify.
Click on Lenders to find a list of lenders that will consider loaning on the Ai dome.
The following information was written by Michael Darling. There is good news; there are more lenders who will lend on domes than on other “unique properties. There is bad news – it is still more difficult to get a loan for a dome home than for traditional construction. And there is good reason for hope for improvement in the near future.
Four Scenarios for Financing a Dome Home
Leaving aside for the moment the differences between construction, purchase and refinance there are three scenarios to focus on when it comes to financing a dome home. All three are based on an appraisal from a licensed appraiser (it can be really helpful to have a more experienced appraiser - more on appraisals below).
- There are three or more comparable properties (comps) of similar design and construction style (dome) with recent sales history in the neighborhood.
- There is at least one comparable property of similar design and construction style with recent sales history in the area and others in the area but without recent sales history.
- There are zero comparable properties of similar design and construction style in the neighborhood.
1. Three or More Comps
I have never failed to find a loan for a dome with three or more comps. Many residential mortgage lenders will be able to do this loan much the same as a traditional loan on a traditional home design. There are lenders who flat out reject domes no matter what, but for the lenders who will consider domes, a property with multiple comparisons should be “lendable”. Even with multiple comps, some lenders who will accept domes may only offer a loan with constraints on the size of loan, the loan to value ratio or other underwriting restrictions. (Full doc only, owner occupied only, one unit only, etc.)
2. At Least One Comp and Other Domes in the Market Area
There are a few residential mortgage lenders who will evaluate this situation and may make a loan. Here is where it can really help to have an experienced appraiser who knows the market because the ability of the appraiser to establish a market value and address the uniqueness of the subject property will be vital to an underwriter. Most lenders who will accept domes in this situation will only offer a loan with constraints on the size of loan, the loan to value ratio or other underwriting requirements. (Full doc only, owner occupied only, one unit only, etc.)
3. No Comps and No Domes in the Market Area
I have found traditional residential mortgage lenders in a few states who will evaluate a dome home with no dome comps on a case by case basis. A lender that would accept a dome in this case will almost certainly include constraints on the size of loan, the loan to value ratio and other underwriting requirements. (Full doc only, owner occupied only, one unit only, etc.)
There are local commercial banks who may offer a residential mortgage loan on a dome home with no dome comps. And there are “hard money” lenders who will evaluate any investment opportunity and who may make loans on dome homes- but compared to a traditional mortgage the fees and rates will likely be higher, the terms shorter and the conditions less advantageous.
If the property has an established or demonstrable commercial use it is possible to do a commercial loan with terms and conditions similar to a residential mortgage. The commercial lenders I work with have no restrictions on domes specifically nor will they be concerned about comps with similar construction styles. They will be looking for an appraisal that demonstrates the commercial value of the property. Bed & Breakfast Inn, multi-family rental, retail business, and other exclusive or mixed commercial uses would all be possibilities. (A home office or a business run from home would not generally be enough to demonstrate commercial value.)
There is a fourth scenario that bears mentioning- the dome home that is appraised as a traditional frame construction home using traditional frame construction comps. Though I am certain that loans have been done this way, there are numerous problems with this scenario. First and worst is that intentionally misrepresenting information in a mortgage application is illegal. Also, many applications have gotten far along in the underwriting process before an underwriter reviews the appraisal and sees a photo of the subject property and rejects the file because that lender does not accept domes. This creates wasted expense and frustration for all parties. It is a way to attempt to get a mortgage on a dome home- it’s just not a good one.
Lenders should be thought of as investors who invest in a loan. And each has their own investment criteria. Most investors want to know they can sell their investment at some point in time- and in the mortgage lending world this means that most lenders underwrite with similar standards and criteria so that a loan can be sold. While the general challenge for financing domes is the shortage of lenders or loan programs, I have access to several loan programs that will accept unique properties if the appraisal includes sufficient market analysis to establish a market valuation for the property. So the specific challenge is typically the appraisal. I can help find an experienced appraiser that will be able to complete the kind of appraisal required.
In addition to the usual appraisal analysis, the dome appraisal must:
- Establish a market value independent of construction type;
- Demonstrate that the home’s uniqueness is accepted in the market, and;
- Address the uniqueness of the dome in the context of local area housing types and marketability.
This means that the underwriter must be able to predict, using the appraisal, what the marketability of a house would be in the event the lender ends up having to possess and sell the property. The difficulty with most dome houses is the lack of comparable sales - “comps” - in order to demonstrate the market value. Comps need to be similar enough to the subject property that using them to establish a market valuation is reasonable. Even very similar comps will be adjusted for minor differences, but the hard part with domes is that they are typically very different in appearance and therefore the predicted marketability can vary considerably from traditional construction. In other words, it’s hard to say “a traditional frame house with 4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms sold for $X in x days and so a 4/2 dome would sell for $Y in y days.”
The best comparable properties will be other domes. If there are no domes for comps, it may be possible to use other unique styles to establish the marketability of unique homes. And if there are other domes and unique houses in the immediate area even if they have not recently sold, adding information about them in the appraisal (quantity, distance from subject, specific architectural style that makes it unique, as well as basic information about the house) will help support that unique styles are acceptable in the area.