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J Fksla

In: Business and Management

Submitted By sayree16
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hgThe Importance of Loan Policies INTRODUCTION
Over the years, the fate of a credit union has been closely tied to how well it manages credit risk. A written loan policy, approved by a credit union’s board of directors and adhered to in practice, is of critical importance in ensuring that the credit union operates in both a safe and a sound manner. In today’s competitive and challenging lending environment, an up-to-date policy, appropriate to a credit union’s lending function and business plan, may be more important than ever. This Bulletin summarizes features and benefits of an effective policy, details warning signs and potential consequences of an outdated policy, and offers practical advice about reviewing and updating a loan policy.

ELEMENTS OF AN EFFECTIVE LOAN POLICY
Written loan policies vary considerably in content, length, and specificity, as well as in style and quality. No two credit unions share the same tolerance for risk, offer the same loan products, and face the same economic conditions. An effective loan policy should reflect the size and complexity of a credit union and its lending operations and should be tailored to its particular needs and characteristics. Revisions should occur as circumstances change, and the policy should be flexible enough to accommodate new lending activity without a major renovation.

During examinations, examiners will make a determination about the adequacy of a credit union’s loan policy. Examiners are guided in their review by rules, Department guidelines, and common sense: Is the policy up-to-date and are important areas adequately addressed? Commission Rule 91.701 details the areas that must be addressed in written loan policies. Regardless of a credit union’s size or location, a loan policy should address:

* General areas of lending * Lending authority of loan officers or committee *...

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