When you need a little extra cash, it can be not easy to find the money. But if you think about your needs and what you’re willing to do for some quick funds, there are many ways to get a loan fast.
When life brings surprises, it’s helpful to know where you can get money quickly and how long it takes to get a loan from various sources. For example, cash can help you pay for repairs, fund health care, or solve other problems. So, what should you expect when you apply for a loan, and you’re in a hurry?
Lenders fall into two broad categories: online lenders and traditional banks or credit unions. Speeds can vary within each group, so it’s critical to ask lenders how long you should expect to wait before starting the application process.
It’s a good question! The answer is that it depends. There are two main things to consider when looking at the speed of loan approvals: how fast does your credit score change, and what type of loan do you need? If you have a high credit score, then there will be many lenders who can offer you quick approval on a no-credit-check payday loan or white goods loan Centrelink. But if you have less than perfect credit, then loans generally take longer to process because they require more documentation. On the other hand, a personal or business loan might not be as easy as an auto title or payday loan. Still, with patience, time and persistence, most people can eventually get approved for one of these types of loans.
However, finding the lender who will approve you quickly is no easy task. Some lenders stake their business on their quick turnaround times, but many keep their processing times close to their chests for fear of losing potential business.
Some lenders say they can approve a loan application in minutes and fund a loan win a day or two of approval, while others may take a few days for each. Generally, you should expect to get the funds from a loan within a week of approval.
It is safe to get a loan from an online lender; you just need to choose a reputable lender. Features like no credit checks and annual percentage rates above 36% should be red flags. Know the signs of predatory loans to avoid a debt trap.
Some payday lenders charge less than the maximum rate, which will make those loans cheaper. However, you are unlikely to find a low rate payday loan in the same way you could find a no interest or low-interest personal loan.
There are payday loans with no credit check, but the amount you can borrow is typically limited.
While every lender may have its own process, below is an overview of what you may be able to expect when considering a personal loan from both an online lender or a traditional bank or credit union. However, the time it takes for you to secure a personal loan may depend on your specific financial situation.
It usually takes one and seven business days to get a personal loan — though this will depend on which type of lender you work with.
Online lenders typically have a fast and easy application process, but receiving money in your bank account may still take several days. If you have limited time to shop around and fill out applications but can wait a few days for the cash to arrive in your account, an online lender may be an excellent choice.
The time it takes to receive money ultimately depends on several factors:
If you need money quickly, an online lender could be a good option. Depending on the lender, you can often apply online within minutes and might even get an instant decision. If you’re approved, you’ll typically get the funds within five business days.
Some lenders send money even faster — for example, Lightstream might fund your loan as soon as the same business day.
Be sure to consider as many lenders as possible before taking out a personal loan. This way, you can find the right loan for you. Credible makes this easy — you can compare your prequalified rates from our partner lenders in the table below in two minutes.
With many online lenders, applying for a loan takes just a few minutes. First, you provide basic information, such as your Social Security number and information about your income, and you receive a preliminary rate quote.1 If you decide to move forward, lenders verify your information and evaluate your application.
It typically takes online lenders several days to approve a loan request. For example, Upstart estimates three to four days of review time. Prosper expects to do it in about five business days.
Once you’re approved, lenders transfer your loan proceeds, often to your bank account. Again, that process can take several days, depending on bank holidays, how quickly your bank clears the deposit in your account and other factors. Upstart can potentially fund your bank account on the business day after you accept your loan offer. LendingClub simply says that transfers may take a few days. Check with your bank to verify when that money is free to spend.
If you already have a checking or savings account with a bank, you might be interested in applying for a loan through that same institution.
Banks’ personal loans typically take one to seven days to fund, depending on the bank and whether you have an account with them. Wells Fargo is one of the fastest personal loan issuers, disbursing funds often by the next business day.
You can also borrow from brick-and-mortar banks and credit unions (or their online counterparts). These institutions can sometimes fund your loan within one day, although the speed varies from bank to bank. If you have access to multiple banks, ask each one how long it takes to get a loan and choose the best one.
Some banks allow you to apply online, while others require you to apply in person at a local branch. The lender will review your information, including your income and credit score, before deciding on your loan application.
You might also qualify for interest rates discounts if you have an existing relationship with the bank.
Depending on your lender, you might fill out an online form, use an old-fashioned paper application, or fill out the application with a representative from the bank. There’s no instant data verification when you fill something out on paper, so it’s easy to submit an incomplete application. Also, the form might ask numerous questions that seem irrelevant. Take your time filling out the application no matter what to ensure it’s complete. This may help speed up the process.
With some lenders, you may receive funds on the same day you apply. That’s an advantage if you need cash quickly, but keep in mind that some banks take up to several business days to review your application.5 You’ll need to back up the information you provide the lender, and the bank will review your credit history. That process takes time, but it can be completed within one business day, assuming staff members have the capacity to complete your request.
The bank can potentially fund your account on the same day you’re approved. Some may take one business day, while others may take longer.
As nonprofit organizations, credit unions often offer lower interest rates than traditional banks. This could make them a good option for a personal loan.
Credit unions also sometimes have less stringent requirements, which means it might be easier to qualify for a personal loan through a credit union than other lenders.
Like banks, the disbursement time for a personal loan from a credit union can range from one to seven business days. However, some credit unions are especially fast.
Be prepared before you apply and select your lenders wisely to help things move as quickly as possible.
Lenders may need to verify your identity and financial details when reviewing your application. The sooner you provide that information, the sooner they can move forward. Find out what documents and details your lender needs so you can submit a complete application. Examples may include:
Problems in your credit report can lower your scores and cause rejection, and sometimes those problems are just mistakes. You can fix credit report errors, but that can take several weeks or months, so give your credit a once-over before applying for a loan.
Select a lender that can provide funding when you need it. Search, call or chat online with customer service representatives to determine how long it takes to get a loan. Also, choose a lender that you believe you will qualify with. For example, some lenders prefer applicants with higher credit scores, while others are willing to work with borrowers with less-than-perfect credit.
Remember that lenders must spend time reviewing your application, verifying the details, and funding your loan. So especially if you’re trying for same-day funding, it’s wise to apply early in the day. Online lenders may have several people applying simultaneously, which could cause a delay, so get it done as soon as you decide on a lender.
Make sure your application is thorough and accurate. Mistakes or questions can cause additional delays. If you’re not sure how to answer a question, contact the lender and ask.
What you need to apply for a loan
To ensure the application process goes as quickly as possible, preparing ahead of time is a good idea. Lenders will ask you for basic information, which often includes the following:
Keep in mind that you’ll need good to excellent credit to qualify for the best interest rates.
It can be expensive to borrow small amounts of money, and borrowing may not solve your money problems.
Check your options before you borrow:
When speed is a priority, you may end up paying more. The fastest loans available may have high rates and fees. While you can solve an immediate problem with products like payday loans, avoid borrowing money that will be difficult to pay off and cause financial struggles.
To compare loans, try using our loan calculator to discover your monthly payments. Then, try using different rates to find out how much your payment might vary.
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