The VA Loan Approval Countdown
How long does it take to obtain a VA loan approval? That’s probably one of the first questions you’ll ask when you speak with a loan officer and one of the most common. And it’s a legitimate one as well, you need to start planning, right? If you’re buying a house and using your VA home loan benefit to finance the purchase your sales contract will typically allow for a 30 day period or whatever you and the seller decide upon in which to close. You can close a VA loan sooner than that but 30 days is common. If you’re refinancing the closing date is entirely up to you with the only barrier being when to lock in your interest rate before rates move back up. In either instance though, there will come a time when your VA lender says, “It’s time to order your loan documents.”
Once you’ve completed your loan application and provided the requested documentation your VA lender then orders further services needed before your loan papers can be ordered. An appraisal and title work will be needed and much, much more. Once all the necessary paperwork is in, only then will the loan go to the VA lender’s underwriter for the approval. That could take up to two weeks and so far you may be three weeks into the process. If your closing date is one more week away, the lender needs time to prepare your closing papers and deliver them to the settlement agent. If you recall, your initial paperwork from the VA lender asked that you lock in your rate at least five days before your closing. Some lenders require even more time.
If you’re refinancing, and your rate is not locked in, the same situation applies. You won’t be able to pick up the phone and say, “Okay, I’m ready” then drive down to the closing. The lender needs time to prepare your closing papers properly. There is a waiting period after you’ve submitted your loan, but the closer you get to your closing, it’s time to get your papers ready.