Mortgages

Who Is The Best Mortgage Lender

By David Krug David Krug is the CEO & President of Bankovia. He's a lifelong expat who has lived in the Philippines, Mexico, Thailand, and Colombia. When he's not reading about cryptocurrencies, he's researching the latest personal finance software. 10 minute read

The value of a person’s home is often their most significant asset. As a result, picking a house as their first big investment is a huge deal. The high expense of housing raises the stakes of this decision significantly. 

An adjustment of just a few hundredths of a percentage point can have a significant effect on the mortgage’s monthly payment and its interest expense throughout the loan’s lifetime. The interest on a 30-year, $300,000 mortgage at a fixed interest rate of 3% comes to $155,332.36 when plugged into an online mortgage amortization calculator. 

If the interest rate was 3.10 percent per year, the total amount of interest paid would be $161,177.71, an increase of about $6,000. With this line of thinking, current homeowners can better compare mortgage refinancing choices that provide lower interest rates or overall borrowing expenses. 

It is in your best interest to compare mortgages because key terms such as interest rate, loan term, and total monthly payment might vary significantly. Check out the best mortgage lenders first.

Outstanding Mortgage Lenders

If you’re looking to buy a home or refinance your current mortgage in the United States, these are some of the top mortgage lenders to work with this year. Some of these mortgage companies also rank among the best home equity lenders for current homeowners who want to use a home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC) to access the equity they have built up in their houses.

We reserve the right to alter the interest rate and terms of any loan at any time.

1. loanDepot

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, VA loans, FHA loans
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed Conventional Purchase). 2.75%
  • Verdict. Wide variety of mortgage loan types at very competitive rates

Home buy, refinance, and construction loans are what loanDepot does best. With over 200 locations across the country, it’s likely that a loanDepot location is convenient for you.

loanDepot has more pricing power, cheaper interest rates, and more advantageous conditions on its products because it is a direct lender that specializes in real estate financing. 

LoanDepot’s website claims that over its more than a decade in existence, the company has originated $175 billion in refinancing loans and almost $100 billion in purchase loans. 

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) guarantees loans for first-time homebuyers with credit scores as low as 580, while the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) guarantees loans for active-duty military personnel.

2. Rocket Mortgage (Quicken Loans)

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, jumbo loans, VA loans (including interest rate reduction refinance loans, FHA loans (including FHA streamline refinance loans)
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed Conventional Purchase). 2.88%
  • Verdict. Rapid mortgage origination and technology-assisted process

Rocket Mortgage, formerly known as Quicken Loans, is a well-known online lending platform with a reputation for speedy loan origination and underwriting. Its efficiency stems in large part from state-of-the-art technology that eliminates manual processes like credit checks and faxing documents in favor of instantaneous prequalification and preapproval.

The amount of paperwork you have to push through to get to closing is minimized thanks to Rocket Mortgage’s secure connection to your bank accounts, which provides a clear, comprehensive picture of your income and assets.

Rocket Mortgage provides a wide range of mortgage options for homebuyers and refinancers, including federal housing administration (FHA) and Veterans Affairs (VA) loans, as well as conventional mortgages with down payments of as little as three percent. Neither home equity loans nor home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) are included.

3. Better

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, jumbo loans, FHA loans
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed Conventional Purchase). 2.63%
  • Verdict. Very low fees; rapid preapproval and faster closing

As a digital mortgage lender, Better is streamlining the mortgage application process by eliminating many of the fees and, by extension, closing charges that were previously accepted as standard. 

Features that set it apart from the competition include:

  • No origination fees are a frequent form of loan fee paid by many mortgage companies and a common type of loan fee charged by many mortgage lenders
  • Reduced or eliminated fees charged by mortgage brokers
  • All steps of the application and underwriting processes are digitally documented for the convenience of the applicant.
  • Instantaneous, up-front cost estimates for loans

Buyers and refinancers can choose from a wide variety of mortgages at Better, including conventional and FHA choices.

4. USAA

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. VA loans, VA jumbo loans, VA interest rate reduction refinance loans
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed VA Purchase Loan). 2.875%
  • Verdict. Excellent rates and terms on mortgage products for military service members and their families

The United Services Automobile Association (USAA) is a comprehensive financial services provider for active duty military personnel, veterans, and their families. The fact that it caters only to military personnel is both an advantage and a disadvantage. 

However, USAA only offers mortgage loans through the Veterans Administration (VA), which leaves out the vast majority of potential borrowers.

However, for those who are eligible, USAA provides unrivaled support and low rates. For those who qualify for a VA loan, USAA should be the first choice in terms of mortgage institutions.

5. Veterans United

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. VA loans, VA jumbo loans, VA interest rate reduction refinance loans
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed VA Purchase Loan). 2.50%
  • Verdict. Extremely competitive rates on VA loan products

Veterans United is an established leader in the VA mortgage industry. It’s distinct from USAA in that it’s not a full-service financial institution. It doesn’t have checking accounts, auto, and property insurance, or wealth management services.

However, it offers a wide variety of VA home loans, including low-interest streamlined refinancing options. Veterans United has a few dozen brick-and-mortar locations around the United States, but the low-interest rates it offers are a direct result of its efficient use of resources.

6. New American Funding

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, jumbo loans, FHA loans, VA loans, reverse mortgages
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed Conventional Purchase). 2.50%
  • Verdict. Category-leading mortgage rates for most borrowers

Mortgage industry leader New American Funding offers clients exceptional service and competitive rates through a national network of local brokers. New American Funding’s mostly digital procedure keeps prices low and fees modest, even though you must interact with a professional loan officer to apply and complete underwriting.

Conventional, jumbo, FHA, and VA loans are just some of the mortgage options available to buyers from New American Funding. The company also provides reverse mortgages, a popular specialized product for senior citizens who have amassed significant equity in their homes.

7. Ally Bank

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, jumbo loans
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed Conventional Purchase). 2.75%
  • Verdict. Low-friction, mostly digital underwriting process with great mortgage rates

In addition to its basic range of low-fee deposit accounts and online brokerage services, Ally Bank now offers auto and home loans online. It’s important to remember that Ally’s selection of house loans isn’t as extensive as that of other specialized mortgage banks. 

Conventional and Jumbo mortgage loans are readily available, but FHA and VA options, as well as any other specialized mortgage loans, are not. Some states, notably New York and North Carolina, with relatively high populations, are excluded from Ally’s home loan offerings.

However, Ally provides a low-hassle, paperless underwriting process, and aggressive interest rates. It’s a good idea to look into it even if you don’t have any prior experience with the bank.

8. Guaranteed Rate

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, jumbo loans, FHA loans, VA loans
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed Conventional Purchase). 2.99%
  • Verdict. Rapid preapproval and closing with a personalized touch

With Guaranteed Rate, you get the best of both worlds: a quick and easy online application and the personal service of a nationwide network of brick-and-mortar lending locations. 

This approach has two paths one for applicants who would rather conduct most of the work independently online, and another for those who prefer interacting with a real person. 

Whichever one suits your fancy is OK with me. Guaranteed Rate also offers other features worth mentioning, such as a quick preapproval and a quick closing process that the company claims are speedier than those offered by competing lenders. 

However, it does offer a wide variety of mortgage loans, including those insured by the Federal Housing Administration and the Veterans Administration, and its rates are competitive.

9. PrimeLending

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, jumbo loans, FHA loans, VA loans, construction loans, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) loans
  • Loan Rates Start At. Not disclosed
  • Verdict. A vast range of loan options for virtually every situation

PrimeLending provides a hybrid approach to the application and underwriting process, with human agents at the helm with the help of a slick technology platform (Loanplicity) that keeps paperwork to a minimum and communication between parties to a minimum. 

You can either start the process with a loan officer and do the online things you’re comfortable with later, or you can start the application process online and speak with a loan officer only as needed.

When it comes to mortgage loans, PrimeLending claims to provide one of the most extensive selections, with over 400 different options. PrimeLending provides specialized services to its customers, such as the USDA loan for rural homebuyers and the construction loan for those who are building or renovating a home.

The absence of up-front price clarity is its main negative. To see the rates that are available to you based on your credit history, income, and the type of house you own as well as your location, you must start the application process.

10. Connexus Credit Union

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans
  • Loan Rates Start At (30-Year Fixed Conventional Purchase). 3.00%
  • Verdict. Competitive rates for conventional borrowers

The standard purchase and refinancing loans from Connexus Credit Union are reliable options, and they come with competitive rates. Connexus is a great option if you aren’t planning on using a nonconventional product like a VA loan or an FHA loan.

However, the largest caveat is that membership in Connexus Credit Union is restricted to certain areas. Ohio and Wisconsin are among the few Midwestern states where the bank operates branches. 

Members need not reside in these areas to participate. However, before proceeding, it is recommended that you contact a loan officer to verify the availability of Connexus mortgage products in your specific region.

11. Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp.

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, jumbo loans, FHA loans, VA loans, renovation loans, USDA loans, reserve mortgages, physician loans
  • Loan Rates Start At. Not disclosed
  • Verdict. Rapid preapproval and high-touch support for low- to moderate income borrowers

Over 400 branch locations make up Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation, a nationwide network of mortgage lenders. You need to be fine with regular human interaction to enjoy using Fairway, as opposed to the more technology-assisted options out there.

Fairway, like many other lenders, isn’t entirely forthright about its interest rates. You can’t even acquire a ballpark figure for the rates and terms to which you are entitled without first starting the application procedure.

Buyers in hot real estate markets will be relieved to hear that Fairway’s preapproval procedure is quite quick. It takes great pleasure in its work with borrowers of all income levels, including those with high debt-to-income ratios, to establish fair lending solutions that allow it to maintain competitive interest rates.

Fairway also offers a wide variety of specialized mortgage loans, including FHA loans, VA loans, USDA loans, reverse mortgages, and even loans tailored to specific professions, such as those for doctors.

12. NBKC Bank

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, VA loans, construction loans, pilot loans
  • Loan Rates Start At. Not disclosed
  • Verdict. Excellent lineup of specialty loans

Whether you’re a business owner or a consumer, you’ll appreciate NBKC Bank’s selection of low-fee deposit accounts available online. Those looking to purchase or refinance a home will be pleased to learn that they can choose from a surprisingly large number of mortgage lending programs.

Loans for building projects and even loans for professional pilots are among the many unique financing choices available. Given that NBKC does not publish its current mortgage rates on its website, it is difficult to compare it to other lenders based on price alone. 

Applicants who have had trouble finding the kind of specialized loans that NBKC offers may find the deciding factor to be the bank’s longstanding reputation for stellar customer service.

13. AmeriSave

  • Mortgage Loan Types Available. Fixed-rate conventional mortgage loans, adjustable-rate mortgage loans, FHA loans, VA loans, USDA loans, solar power financing
  • Loan Rates Start At. Around 2.25% but may vary by loan type
  • Verdict. Rapid pre-approval and closing; good specialty loan lineup

Customers of AmeriSave Mortgage Corporation benefit from the company’s dedication to their needs by receiving a pre-approval and closing in as few as 25 days. FHA loans, VA loans, and USDA loans round out the comprehensive selection of government-backed specialized loans.

Additional differentiators for AmeriSave include competitive interest rates again, for qualifying borrowers and precise rate quotes that customers may take to the bank. Many rivals continue to provide imprecise projections that are almost certain to evolve. 

Furthermore, it is one of the few listed lenders that promotes specialized financing for residential solar power installations, which is a fantastic option for homeowners to cut their expenditures without having to sell their homes.

Bottom Line

Comparing mortgage quotes is a crucial first step in the process of buying a home or refinancing an existing mortgage. If you’re looking to buy, for instance, it’s important to compare loan quotations and get prequalified for a loan before you start house hunting. 

The next step is to formally apply with the lenders who are at the top of your list and to compare the terms of each offer. Presenting the best offer to your preferred lenders to see if they can match or beat it could be a lucrative negotiating strategy.

Choose your loan and start the underwriting procedure when the time comes. This stage of the process can take several weeks and a great deal of communication between you and your lender. If you don’t have it, you might not be able to get a mortgage in the first place or get a better interest rate on the one you have.

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