NEWS

Urgent Applications: How to Work with us to Meet Tight Deadlines

At Bluestone, we get that sometimes a little bit of extra effort is needed to get a deal over the line in time. Read on to learn how to work with Bluestone to get to settlement in record time.


As a non-bank specialising in near prime and specialist scenarios, we often meet our customers at a point of heightened stress - the bank has rejected them, and suddenly they find themselves with a settlement clause looming and no finance approval to show for it.

This can be extremely distressing for borrowers, and puts added pressure on their broker to get the deal done in time. The Bluestone team recognise that expedience is crucial, so we thrive to assess all applications diligently and quickly, but in some cases, additional effort is needed.

When all else fails, you can request an escalation for your application. When considering that route, keep in mind that we will only approve these in circumstances of genuine need.

How to Avoid the Rush

If you’ve got a deal that is particularly tight, there’s a number of things you can do to help us process your application quicker, like making sure your deal is fully packaged from the start and keeping customers on standby to provide further info and return completed loan documents. Another good tip for a quick process is to order a valuation upfront so it’s ready to go by the time we need it - if the property value is under $1m we’ll refund the cost afterwards!

We provide a number of calculators and downloads to help you choose the most appropriate loan product and package your application on our website. If at any point you are unsure about what you need, reach out to your BDM, who will be more than happy to help.

By giving us everything we need, you help us hit the ground running and can expect a speedy process as a result.

When do we escalate applications?

Reasons for escalating an application vary, but usually relate to finance clauses or settlement dates. Urgency can be created in these situations due to no fault of the broker or borrower, like when a previous application was denied by another lender, or when the seller is under particular time pressure due to a property chain.

If you would like to escalate an application with us, remember that we will require proof of your reason, so make sure you’ve got your contract of sale or other documentation before asking us to escalate.

When do we reject a request to escalate?

Because of the high volume of applications we process every day, we can’t escalate every file that is submitted to us - if we prioritise everything, nothing will get done any quicker. Escalating files for non-urgent reasons unfairly penalises those brokers and customers who submitted their applications with ample time to spare, and it is important to us to uphold great turnaround times for these loans too.

So, if you don’t have a genuine need for speed, we’ll have to say no.

Reasons that are not sufficient include an upcoming holiday for you or your clients, or trying to tie up outstanding deals at the end of the month. We also don’t accept escalations when they relate to borrowers’ loan terms changing, such as a switch from IO to P&I, or an impending higher interest rate. To avoid paying extra, we always recommend borrowers start exploring their refinancing options well in advance of an upcoming change in loan terms.

Also note that we can’t escalate applications for some larger loans (above $1.5m), as these always require a second level of underwriting that creates bottlenecks in our processes if they are escalated.

Finally, remember that an escalation doesn’t mean we can make allowances when assessing and approving the loan - we still require the same documents, and we can’t do anything until we’ve got those documents in front of us. So if you request an escalation without providing us all the documents we list on our application checklist, we will say no until you do.

What do you need to do to escalate an application?

The first thing you should do when challenged by a tight deadline, is make sure that you package the deal as perfectly as you can. If you give us everything we need from the start, you might not even need an escalation to cross the finish line on time.

If you do need us to escalate the file, you should speak to your BDM. Only they will be able to submit the request to escalate with the relevant internal team handling the application at the time.

You will need to make sure you submit proof for the reason necessitating the tighter timeframe. Evidence we will accept usually has to show the date you’re trying to meet, like a contract of sale, a loan contract or mortgage agreement, tax notices or bankruptcy agreements.

Provided the deal is packaged fully and you have provided appropriate evidence, we accept requests to escalate within 10 days of a settlement, within 3 days for a finance clause, and within 2 days of a repossession.

What happens to an escalated application?

Once we escalate a file, it will move to the front of the queue, meaning it will be the next case our loan coordinators, underwriters or settlements officers will pick up. We try to get to an escalated application on the same day, but if the escalation comes through in the afternoon it may become the first item on the agenda the following working day.

Keep in mind that on an average day, we will receive 10 escalated files, so we will employ common sense to meet as many deadlines as possible. This means that even if an escalated file is on top of the pile, if another application with an even tighter time frame comes in, we may need to work on it first.

A deal remains escalated until the desired goal has been met - so if your customers need conditional approval to make an offer, the file will return to regular priority once this has been reached. But if a settlement date is coming up, the application will remain escalated from the moment we get the request to when the dollars reach their destination.

How to help us help you

When met with an urgent deadline, our team will do everything we can to get there in time, but we can only do so much without a little help from our friends - you brokers. There’s a few ways you can help us work as efficiently as possible.

First and foremost, when you realise you’re dealing with a scenario under some time pressure, don’t waste another minute - let your BDM know right away so we can start planning and working on your file as quickly as possible.

For an escalation to work, you have to make sure to package the deal as fully as you can right from the start. Finally, make sure you and the borrowers are readily available to provide any additional information or documents as soon as possible. If you can’t get back to our requests in a timely manner, we may cancel the escalation.
 

The best way to ensure a stress-free approval is always to avoid an escalation altogether. If you’d like to learn more about packaging deals fully and helping us provide a smooth application process, get in touch with your BDM today.