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The price of steel and aluminum construction loans are now almost 50 percent lower than when the loans were first offered, according to a new report from a leading real estate consultancy.

The survey, conducted by brokerage firm CoreLogic, also found that the average price of construction loans rose by almost 8 percent last year to $3,935 per month, a slight improvement from the previous year’s record low of $2,959 per month.

But CoreLogics found that a typical 18-month steel construction loan, which is often used to finance projects that require heavy equipment, still costs nearly twice as much as the typical 18 month aluminum construction loan.

The steel loan is a much more reliable option when interest rates are low, CoreLogIC said in a press release. 

It is also likely that the rise in construction loans, which has been largely driven by the recent surge in construction activity, will be offset by the increase in prices for concrete, concrete rebar, concrete mix and rebar.

The average steel construction debt rate jumped to 6.4 percent last December from 5.6 percent in 2011, Corelogics said.

The average steel loan rose by 4.9 percent to $1,076 per month in 2012.

The aggregate steel construction loans averaged $2.2 billion in 2012, up from $2 billion last year, CoreStats said.

That’s an increase of 4.5 percent compared to 2011, the firm added.

A new study from financial services firm Trulia found that average interest rates on steel construction, rebar and concrete rebars rose by 7.7 percent last month, with the average interest rate on steel rebar rising by 15.1 percent.

The rate on concrete rebaring rose by 8.3 percent to 2.4 million per month on average, Trulia said.