You decide you want to refinance your VA loan with the VA IRRRL refinance program. Rates fell and you could save a significant amount of money each month. Suddenly you are eager to get the loan closed so that you can start reaping the savings. But the big question is, how much time does it take to close the IRRRL program?
Unfortunately, there’s no cut and dry answer. Each lender differs. It’s not the VA that controls the length of time it takes to close. The VA sets their basic guidelines for the program and they approve certain lenders to offer the program. These lenders then close in the VA’s name, funding the loan and securing the VA’s guarantee.
Because you can go to almost any VA approved lender in your area or that is approved to lend in your area, you’ll find varying closing times from lender to lender.
What Determines the Length of Time to Close?
As far as the lender goes, there are several factors that determine how long it takes to close your loan:
- Their workload at the time you apply
- The work they have to do on your loan
- Their swiftness in communication with you
When you shop for a lender, you’ll want to ask them directly how long they take to close loans right now. You’ll likely find that turnaround times change depending on the lender’s workload. During heavy times, you’ll see the times slow down. When work is light, you’ll see them speed up. Because the VA IRRRL refinance requires very little work on the lender’s part, ideally, you could get it closed in a week or two, but that doesn’t mean every lender will be able to do that.
Another factor you’ll want to consider is how well the lender communicates. When you shop around, talk to the lender. Make sure to ask many questions and see how fast they respond. Send emails and make phone calls to them. Keep track of how long it takes them to get back to you. This will play a role in how well they communicate with you during the loan process. The quicker your loan officer relays the information to you that he heard from the underwriter, the quicker you can respond and get the loan closed.
You Play a Role in the Time to Close
Believe it or not, you play an important role in getting the loan closed too. If you don’t respond to the underwriter’s requests right away, you delay the closing process. As soon as the lender asks you for something, do your best to get it back to them right away. This way you don’t lose your place in line and you are able to get the loan closed quickly.
Keep the lines of communication open with the lender. If you don’t hear from your loan officer in a few days, go ahead and check in with him. He may have missed an item that the underwriter is waiting for, which could delay your closing process. The more forward you are with the mortgage company, the quicker you get that loan to the closing table.
Qualifying for the VA IRRRL
Another way to help speed along the VA IRRRL process is to submit a full package. With the VA IRRRL this isn’t hard since they don’t need a lot of information. Basically you need:
- Proof of your timely mortgage payments from your mortgage provider
- 2 months of bank statements if you are paying closing costs at the closing
- Information regarding how to contact your employer to verify your employment (not your income)
- Your most recent mortgage statement
- Your Closing Statement from your VA loan closing
- Your VA loan note
If you provide all of these documents to your lender at once, chances are you can get your VA loan closed quickly, assuming you chose a lender with a quick turnaround time.
In reality, it doesn’t take long to close a VA IRRRL refinance. The VA doesn’t have to approve anything – they leave that up to their approved lenders. It’s up to you and the lender regarding the time it takes to close your refinance.