No matter the reason, once you lodge a bank loan application, you need to get it approved—and approved fast. As a business owner/manager, or even as an individual, there might be a period in your life when you need to borrow money to attend to and manage your financial responsibilities.
So how long does it take for your bank loan to get approved and come through? The answer, really, is it varies. Turnaround time can be as quick as a couple of days to weeks, or even months. Waiting time varies from bank to bank, depending on your personal circumstances, whether you’ve met all your bank’s criteria, etc. What you can do, however, is to prepare—and prepare well—to make sure once you commence your loan application process, it gets approved as fast as possible.
Here are things you need to consider:
- Initial conversation
- Application and required documents
- Preliminary assessment
- Pre- and conditional approval
- Unconditional and formal approval
- Issuance of loan offer
Besides the obvious requirements and criteria that you need to satisfy, you also have to prepare for the initial conversation you will be in with a representative of your lending bank. Here, you will discuss your current financial situation, as well as your personal and/or business needs and goals and why you’re applying for a loan.
In most cases, by the end of the discussion, your bank’s representative will already have a clear idea whether you qualify for the loan, if not already coming up with a determined approval or rejection of your application.
Application and required documents
Once you’ve finally discussed the purpose of your loan application, you will then be required by the bank to submit/present necessary documents that include:
- Proof of income
- Bank statements
- Personal identification
- Address verification
Learn more about the above requirements here.
Most banks and financial institutions require you to complete a preliminary assessment, whether online or in person. This is to evaluate your financial situation and identify issues/problems that may arise from your lending bank’s point of view. Expect that this will be a rigorous and detailed process, as your bank needs to ascertain first, your qualification for loan approval, and second, your capability to manage and attend to your debt repayment responsibilities.
In most cases, by the end of the assessment, your bank will have already presented you with options on the loans they’re making available to you.
Pre- and conditional approval
After you’ve submitted/presented all the documents required, your bank will then assess your application and confirm whether or not you qualify for the loan and meet their policy. Your bank will then issue an approval, subject to specific conditions and the agreements it has made with you.
This stage also involves details on your collateral. Your bank will specify whether or not your asset meets their criteria for collaterals, or if you need to present other collateral options.
After the bank determines if your collateral is sufficient, they will then send a representative to inspect said collateral and commence the valuation process. This is when the time frame of your loan’s approval mostly gets determined, as the valuation process may be completed quickly, or last and get dragged for longer periods of time. Of course, the quality of your asset as collateral mostly has something to do with the said time consideration.
Unconditional and formal approval
When your bank has determined your qualification and has everything it needs to confirm your eligibility for a loan and your capability to attend to your debt repayment obligations, you will be granted formal or unconditional approval. A letter of confirmation will be issued and addressed to you.
You can finally relax at this stage. You might need to go to your lending bank to submit necessary, additional documents when requested, but mostly, at this stage, it’s already in the bag.
Issuance of loan offer
Upon formal approval, your bank will send you a loan contract that you will sign to formally accept the loan. If unsure about the specifics/contents of your contract, do not hesitate to engage the services of your solicitor or a trusted lawyer with a proven expertise on the subject matter.
Your solicitor or lawyer will explain to you the unfamiliar terms and conditions you may encounter in the contract, including financial and legal implications. Simply, they will guide you in understanding your contract better and more comprehensively. This will help you prepare for, manage, and attend to your obligations in debt repayment.
Finally, your bank will now advance the loan funds. You will be contacted by your bank or lending institution with information that funds are now available. The communication will also include a settlement schedule—date and time—with your bank’s representative. You will then be receiving your loan funds.
Again, the entire processing and waiting time for your bank loan to finally get approved varies from bank to bank, and also depends on your current financial situation and your readiness and capability to repay debt as determined by your lending bank, among other things.
To make sure your loan application gets approved fast, consider the following:
- Limiting the number of your applications
- Keeping a satisfactory—if not commendable—credit standing/rating
- Closely monitoring your credit report
Also, to simplify all above considerations, remember to do the following to avoid having your loan application getting rejected, and instead increase your chances for approval:
- Understanding and meeting the credit requirements
- Finding out the minimum income requirements
- Ensuring validity of your loan purpose(s)
- Providing verified and sufficient details
- Meeting employment detail requirements
- Not having multiple loans that make it a challenge for you to manage debt repayment properly
- Making sure you have sufficient collateral
Remember that the length of your waiting time to getting your loan application approved depends on how complex your loan is, your qualification for the loan, the completeness of the documents you will be required to submit/present, and the time it takes for your bank to evaluate your overall financial situation and credit rating.
Yes, the waiting time isn’t entirely up to you, but the above tips and considerations will help you maximise on the factors you have a control on, to make sure you get your bank loan approved—and approved fast.