What are the disadvantages of fixed-rate commercial loans compared to adjustable-rate commercial loans?

May 09, 2024

When it comes to financing commercial real estate, one of the key decisions that borrowers need to make is choosing between a fixed-rate commercial loan and an adjustable-rate commercial loan. Each type of loan has its own set of advantages and drawbacks, and it's crucial for borrowers to understand the differences before making a decision.

The Drawbacks of Fixed-Rate Commercial Loans:

Fixed-rate commercial loans offer the stability of a consistent interest rate throughout the loan term. While this predictability can be appealing to some borrowers, there are drawbacks to consider:

1. Higher Initial Interest Rates:

One of the main drawbacks of fixed-rate commercial loans is that they typically come with higher initial interest rates compared to adjustable-rate loans. This can result in higher monthly payments and increased borrowing costs over the life of the loan.

high interest rates

2. Limited Flexibility:

Fixed-rate loans offer less flexibility compared to adjustable-rate loans. Borrowers are locked into the same interest rate for the entire term of the loan, which means they may miss out on potential savings if interest rates decrease in the future.

The Drawbacks of Adjustable-Rate Commercial Loans:

Adjustable-rate commercial loans, on the other hand, come with their own set of drawbacks that borrowers should be aware of:

1. Rate Fluctuations:

One of the main drawbacks of adjustable-rate loans is the potential for interest rate fluctuations. While these loans often start with lower initial rates compared to fixed-rate loans, the interest rate can adjust periodically based on market conditions, leading to unpredictable monthly payments.

interest rate fluctuations

2. Budgeting Challenges:

Because the interest rate on adjustable-rate loans can change over time, borrowers may face budgeting challenges as their monthly payments fluctuate. This can make it difficult to plan for future expenses and cash flow needs.


When deciding between fixed-rate and adjustable-rate commercial loans, it's essential for borrowers to carefully weigh the drawbacks of each option against their financial goals and risk tolerance. Working closely with a trusted lender or financial advisor can help borrowers make an informed decision that aligns with their long-term objectives.