Bridging loan

Quick facts

A bridging loan is a quick-turnaround, short-term loan (usually less than 12 months) made to an individual or business until either this loan can be cleared in full or a more permanent source of funding secured. 

You can think of a bridging loan as a temporary loan that gets you from A to B, hence the ‘bridge’ idea. These loans can be secured against all types of property, including property that other lenders might deem unsuitable, and also against inventory.

They are quick to arrange (from 48 hours) because typically they have flexible lending criteria and don’t need extensive checks. 

You’ll often hear ‘bridging loan’ used in the context of domestic or commercial property purchases, but you can use bridging finance for any commercial purpose, as long as you have a clear exit in place. In other words, a lender will want to know that, at the end of the term, you can either clear the bridging loan in full (with interest) or move it on to a more permanent type of finance with a traditional lender, e.g. a term mortgage.

You might consider a bridging loan if you are:

  • purchasing land or property
  • re-bridging or extending an existing bridging loan
  • expanding (or consolidating) your business
  • paying off your business debts
  • paying your HMRC tax bill
  • avoiding repossessions.

You’ll also hear the terms ‘re-bridging loan‘ or ‘bridge extension’. If you’re approaching the end of the term on your bridging loan and your exit plan isn’t happening, you’ll need to arrange a new bridging facility to replace your existing loan (re-bridge). You can either opt for a bridge extension with your existing lender, or you might find you’re better off moving your loan to a different lender.

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