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Our top 5 lenders offer low rates, online applications, and a broad range of mortgage products. But there are some differences between them. To help you compare between the best online mortgage lenders, we created the following features-comparison chart. Take a look at the rates, terms, customer support, and the range of loans on offer to find the best lender for you.
Overall Rating
Editor’s Choice
Direct Lender or Marketplace
Direct lenders provide loans to borrowers. Marketplaces help borrowers compare direct lenders.
Marketplace
Direct
Direct
Direct
Direct
Terms
The duration of your loan, i.e. the number of years to repay it.
10-30
15-30
10-30
15-30
15-30
Minimum Credit Score
All
Fair +
Fair +
All
Good +
Minimum Down Payment
Lowest down payment across all mortgage products
0%
0%
0%
0%
0%
Pros & Cons
Advertises rates
Non-conventional loans
Government-backed loans such as FHA, VA, and USDA.
Market-beating rates
Top Pro
Free to use
Quick and effective approval process
Closure in 3 weeks
Quick application and closure
Physical branches in 25 states
Top Con
Not a direct lender
No rates without contact details
Not available to NY residents
No HELs or HELOCs
Not available in New York
Bottom Line
Compares lenders in seconds
Combining experience and digital
Broad selection of loans
Nation’s largest mortgage lender
Wide selection of mortgage products
Types of Loans
Fixed Rate
Conventional loan with fixed rate for duration of loan
Adjustable Rate
Conventional loan with adjustable rate for introductory period of 3-10 years
Cash Out Refinance
Alternative way of using home equity to borrow cash
HEL/HELOC
Loans and lines of credit that let homeowners tap into their equity to borrow large sums
Jumbo
Loan that exceeds FHA’s conforming limits, usually more than $424,100.
FHA
Government-backed loan for borrowers with low credit, with 3.5-10% down payment
VA
Government-backed loan for military personnel and veterans
USDA
Loans backed by Department of Agriculture for rural and suburban homes
Reverse Mortgage
Enables homeowners aged 62 and older to use their home equity to borrow
Operations
Year Founded
1996
1991
2003
1985
2003
Headquarters
North Carolina
Pennsylvania
Ohio
Michigan
California
States
50
43
AL, AZ, AR, CA, CO, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, WY
30
AZ, AR, CA, CO, CT, DE, IL, IN, LA, MA, ME, MD, MI, MN, NC, NH, NJ, NM, OH, OK, OR, PA, SC, TN, VA, VT, WI, WA, GA, NV,
50
48
AL, AK, AZ, AR, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NE, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WV, WA, WI, WY, LA
Online
Physical Branches
Customer Support
Phone
Email
Live Chat
FAQ
In Branch
Types Of Mortgage Loans
Whether it’s your very first home, or you’re moving for the third time in your life, moving house is always an exciting process. Amongst all of the giddiness though, there is usually a lot of stress involved. We all know that mortgages aren’t cheap, and that if we want to be able to cope with the monthly payments, we have to choose the right one for our needs and lifestyle. In 2017, homebuyers are left with a very difficult decision, as there are numerous types of mortgage loans on the market, all offering something unique but useful. If you’re amongst the thousands who are struggling to make a final decision, hopefully this in depth guide will help you to identify the right mortgage loan for you.
Fixed-Rate Loan
All loan types fit into categories and overall, it kind of looks like an ancestry tree – at the top you have a fixed-rate or adjustable-rate loan. As a borrower, it’s inevitable that you’ll come across these two types of loan, and you’ll have to pick one before you carry on with the home buying process. For a fixed-rate mortgage loan, you will receive the same interest rate throughout the entire payment process, meaning that your monthly payment will never fluctuate, allowing you to budget for all other expenses easier. Some people often get confused about whether this applies for long-term financing options, and the great answer is that it does, even for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage loan! Although, whilst having a fixed rate loan allows you to budget your finances easier, this novelty does come with a cost of higher interest charges overall compared to the initial rate of an adjustable-rate loan.
Adjustable-Rate Loan
Of course, as a FRM loan and an ARM loan are opposites, you can already guess what’s involved with an ARM loan. As you’d expect, adjustable-rate loans have an interest rate that fluctuates over time, either increasing or decreasing. Usually, the interest rate on an ARM loan will change on an annual basis after an initial period of remaining fixed, which is why it’s often referred to as a “hybrid” product. For a hybrid ARM loan, the interest rate begins fixed and unchanging before then switching to an adjustable rate. To put this into perspective for you, the 5/1 ARM loan has a fixed interest rate for the first 5 years, which then transforms to an annual adjustment after that duration. The ARM seems favourable to many as the interest rate will always begin lower than for an FRM loan, however later adjustments do provide home-owners with uncertainty.
Conventional Loan
So, once you’ve made the decision of either fixed or adjustable, you’ll need to consider either government-insured or conventional. If you’re wondering about a conventional loan, the main thing you need to know is that it isn’t insured or guaranteed by federal government. Of course, the core benefit of this mortgage loan is the fact that you can completely evade mortgage insurance. As long as you make a payment of 20% or more, mortgage insurance won’t be an issue for you. However, pay under 20%, and you’ll be approached by PMI, increasing the value of your monthly payment, although the cost of PMI is usually much less than the insurance attached to government-insured loans, such as a FHA. These are all things you need to consider before making this choice.
Government-Insured Loan
There are three main government-insured loans that you’ll need to consider, which are FHA, VA and USDA. Naturally, all three will offer different qualities when it comes to your mortgage payments, so listen carefully about what each one has to offer before choosing one.