How long does it take to arrange a business loan?

When recognising you need new finance for any purpose, one of the questions in your mind will be how long is it going to take to arrange?

We've covered in a previous post all the things you can do to make the business loan application process as efficient as possible, now let's look at what the stats show.

A recent survey by the NACFB of its members showed that the average time to complete a successful transaction is 83 hours. This covers everything from enquiry to drawdown.

The results vary significantly by the type of finance that is required.

A small unsecured* loan for working capital only takes on average 24 hours. A short-term bridging loan takes more than 10 times as long at 272 hours, or just over 11 days.

There are lots of different spreads in between as our table below shows.

Finance Type Average number of hours to complete
Short-term and bridging loans 272
M&A Finance 148
Development finance 103
Commercial mortgages 97
Leasing and asset finance 55
Buy-to-let finance 51
Cashflow finance 39
Factoring and invoice finance 35
Unsecured finance 24


Whenever you need finance, it pays to be prepared and to factor in enough time for your adviser to make recommendations on the funder and help present your application in the best possible light. The finance community works pretty quickly when it needs to, but even so, it never looks good to be needing the money immediately!

Please talk to us if you think we can help.

*unsecured loans often require a director's personal guarantee.


Photo by Tsvetoslav Hristov on Unsplash

How long does it take to arrange a business loan?

By: Neil Edwards

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