A hard money loan is a specific type of asset-based loan through which a borrower receives funds secured by real property and they require special types of appraisals. Hard money loans are typically issued by private investors or companies. Interest rates are typically higher than conventional commercial or residential property loans because of the higher risk taken by the lender. Most hard money loans are used for projects lasting from a few months to a few years. Hard money may also be abridge-loan in some cases. They usually have similar criteria for lending as well as cost to the borrowers. The property value is the main criteria for the hard money loan. A very accurate appraisal from a highly experienced hard money loan appraiser is always necessary.