Every week our review team looks at over 100 loan applications, we will prioritize loans that meet these four qualifications.

Once your loan is submitted, the review team at Kiva HQ will take 1-2 weeks to review your application. The Kiva review team looks at every submitted application and determines your approved loan size and the number of lenders you must invite to begin publicly fundraising on our platform.  


1. Profile Quality

We prioritize borrowers who have high quality loan applications with clear photos, detailed loan purposes, and well thought out personal stories and business descriptions.  Learn more here.

2. Business Validation

Kiva verifies your business by comparing your Kiva loan application to official government documentation, e.g.:

  • Incorporation documents

  • Government registration (federal, state, county, or city)

  • Permits

  • Doing Business As, or Fictitious Business Name, or Assumed Business Name

  • Business tax returns

  • Tax IDs/EINs (for incorporated businesses)

    • Kiva does not accept Tax IDs/EINs for sole proprietorships

If you are unable to provide official government documentation of your business, three options exist to access a Kiva loan:

  • An approved Kiva staff member or partner visits your business in person

  • A Certified Kiva Trustee endorses your loan

  • A bill addressed to the name of your business at your stated business address

3. SOCIAL underwriting

Social underwriting is the process we use here at Kiva to determine whether or not to grant a loan. While banks and most other financial institutions use a data-based system, examining credit score, cash flow, and collateral value, social underwriting is a more personal, character-based approach.  

What social underwriting boils down to is this:

Your creditworthiness is determined by the strength of your character and your standing in your community.

4. Responsiveness

We speak with every borrower on the phone before we post your loan.  We give priority to borrowers who are highly responsive.  The final step in the approval process is a phone conversation from our review team to explain your approved loan size and terms. Double-check that the phone number you listed on your application is working! After speaking with a Kiva representative, your profile will go live and you can begin private fundraising.


If you have any questions, please contact us at borrowers@kiva.org. We’ll make sure a human gets in touch with you!