The process of taking out a loan for your charity is similar to applying for a residential mortgage. The five steps of our loan process are summarised below, including key stages and timings.
1. First step
Before making an application, please call our loans team on 01732 441919 to discuss the suitability of your project for a loan. If we cannot help we will do our best to suggest alternatives.
We will need as much relevant information as possible in order to assess your application. Our Loan Application form details what we need.
When your application form is complete, send it to us by email or post. We will acknowledge receipt and give you an indication of how quickly we will be able to process your request.
Our team of regional managers have extensive experience in lending to charities and social enterprises. If we think we can help, your regional manager will be in touch to discuss your application. If we can't help we will seek to signpost you to someone else who can.
If your manager believes your proposition is viable they will submit a report to our Credit department with a recommendation.
The loan assessment process can take around three to eight weeks from receipt of the requested information, depending on the complexity of the project.
We endeavour to respond to all enquiries and applications within 48 hours, and we will keep you informed of how your application is progressing at each stage.
If your need is urgent
We understand that short term cash flow needs can arise suddenly. If your need is urgent, please contact us at the outset and we will tell you if we can meet your timescale or not.
Once a decision has been made on your application, we will advise you of the outcome. If the loan is approved, we will send you a formal Loan Agreement.
The Loan Agreement sets out the conditions that you have to comply with before you can draw the money (known as the ‘conditions precedent’). It also tells you of any other conditions that you may have to fulfil on an ongoing basis (such as providing us with financial information).
If we are taking security, such as a charge over property, we will instruct solicitors to act on our behalf when the Loan Agreement is issued.
Unless agreed otherwise, the Loan Agreement should be approved by your board, signed and returned to us with the arrangement fee within 30 days.
5. Drawing the loan
Once the paperwork has been completed and the conditions precedent met, you can submit a request to draw down the loan.
You will usually have up to 90 days from the date the Loan Agreement is signed to draw all or part of the loan. After that a commitment fee will be payable.
If something happens which causes you to change your plans, or might have an impact on your organisation or its ability to repay the loan, then please get in touch with us so that we can understand your concerns and discuss how we may be able to help.
For more information or to discuss the suitability of your project for a loan, please call us on 01732 441919 or email us to speak with one of our experienced lending team.