Best Mortgage Lenders From Our Partners
NerdWallet’s ratings are determined by our editorial team. The scoring formulas take into account multiple data points for each financial product and service.
|Min. credit score
Minimum credit score on top loans other loan types or factors may selectively influence minimum credit score standards
|Min. down payment|
Best for first-time home buyers
Best for overall FHA loan experience
Best for overall mortgage experience
New American Funding works with down payment assistance programs in 14 states, including California, Texas, Florida and Illinois.
Best for refi loan options
Best for credit union lending
at Bethpage Federal Credit Union
Ally Bank: NMLS#181005
Min. credit score
NBKC offers conventional loans for as little as 3% down.
Why we like it
Good for: borrowers with solid credit who want to pay low rates and get an online experience with phone support. VA loans are an emphasis.
Extends full online capabilities, from application to loan tracking.
Displays customized rates, with fee estimates, without requiring contact information.
Equity lines and construction loans are available only in the Kansas City metro area.
Doesnt offer renovation loans.
Min. credit score
NASB offers conventional loans for as little as 3% down.
NASB couples competitive mortgage rates and reasonable fees with a good assortment of loan options.
Bankrate Guide To Choosing The Best Home Equity Loan
Why trust Bankrate?
At Bankrate, our mission is to empower you to make smarter financial decisions. Weve been comparing and surveying financial institutions for more than 40 years to help you find the right products for your situation. Our award-winning editorial team follows strict guidelines to ensure our content is not influenced by advertisers. Additionally, our content is thoroughly reported and vigorously edited to ensure accuracy.
Bankrate analyzes loans to compare interest rates, fees, accessibility, online tools, repayment terms and funding speed to help readers feel confident in their financial decisions. Our meticulous research done by loan experts identifies both advantages and disadvantages to the best lenders.
When shopping for a home equity loan, look for a competitive interest rate, repayment terms that meet your needs and minimal fees. Loan details presented here are current as of the publication date. Check the lenders websites to see if there is more recent information. The top lenders listed below are selected based on factors such as APR, loan amounts, fees, credit requirements and broad availability.
Rocket Mortgage Llc: Nmls#3030
Min. credit score
Why we like it
Good for: borrowers who appreciate convenience online and on the go for a fully digital home loan experience with consistently acclaimed customer service.
Caters to self-service users who want to apply for a home loan online and talk to a human only as necessary.
Estimates the loan amount youll qualify for within minutes.
Streamlines the online process with document and asset retrieval capabilities, including the ability to edit your preapproval letter.
Getting a customized interest rate requires a credit check, which can affect your credit score.
Doesn’t offer home equity loans or lines of credit.
Lender fees are on the high side and the fees aren’t offset by particularly low mortgage rates, according to the latest data.
Min. credit score
Veterans United offers VA loans for as little as 0% down.
Good for: veterans, active-duty service members and eligible reservists looking for VA or non-VA loans.
Offers 24/7 customer service over the phone.
Has online application and pre-qualification.
Offers a free credit counseling service.
Employs advisors from each branch of the armed forces.
Doesnt offer home equity loans or HELOCs.
Veterans United has physical branch offices in only 17 states.
Information on FHA, USDA and conventional loans is harder to find on its website.
at Bethpage Federal Credit Union
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How Do You Pay Your Mortgage
Most mortgage companies offer several ways to make a payment on your loan. For example, Rocket Mortgage lets you make a loan payment online through a secure portal, over the phone, or via regular mail. Typically, the easiest method is to set up automated bank account withdrawals through ACH.
You can check with your mortgage company to see which payment methods it accepts.
How Long Does The Mortgage Application Process Take
The process varies by lender and financial situation, but most qualified borrowers can close on a mortgage loan within about 30 days. Better Mortgage reports an average loan closing time of just 21 days, while both LendingTree and Quicken Loans report that their loans typically close within 30 days.
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What Is A Mortgage Rate
Mortgage rates express the amount of interest you will pay on your mortgage as a percentage. For example, if you borrow $300,000 with a 5% fixed interest rate, you will pay $15,000 in interest by the time you pay off your home .
A variety of factors determine the current mortgage rates, including economic indicators such as inflation and unemployment as well as actions by the Federal Reserve. The rates change each day, which is why most lenders post todays mortgage rates on their homepages.
Your financial history affects your ability to qualify for the best mortgage rates. In general, you should aim for a credit score of at least 740 if you want to save money on interest. Lenders also look at the loan-to-value ratio when determining home loan rates. This number represents the amount you will borrow in comparison to the value of the property. The LTV should be less than 80% for the lowest mortgage rates.
How To Apply For A Mortgage
Whenever a lender provides a mortgage loan to a borrower, they take on a certain amount of risk because there is never a 100% guarantee that the borrower will have the ability to pay back the entire loan. The best protection for the lender is the property itself, which the lender can seize or foreclose if the borrower defaults on payments. The other way lenders protect themselves is by running a background check on the borrower.
When assessing a borrower, the lender is likely to take into account credit score, income, expenses, and the size of the down payment. In order to run an assessment, your lender is likely to ask for the following:
- Social security number
- W-2s or I-9 from the past two years
- Proof of other sources of income
- Federal tax returns
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What Is A Home Equity Line Of Credit
A home equity line of credit or HELOC is a loan that uses your homes equity as collateral, but instead of issuing the loan in a lump sum, the lender would extend a line of credit based on your equity.
In that way, HELOCs are similar to credit cards. Like a credit card, you have a certain spending limit and when you reach that threshold your credit stops.
The period when you can spend money through your HELOC is called the draw period. After the draw period ends, you can longer access the credit, and you enter your repayment period. HELOC draw periods are usually between five and 10 years.
What Kind Of Credit Score Do You Need To Buy A Manufactured Home
If you search on the internet you will probably find answers that say from 580 to 620 is needed to be approved for a loan. Well let me just say good luck with any below 620. I am not saying its impossible.
You very well may be able to secure a loan with a 580 , it will just be extremely challenging and you will need a considerable down payment.
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Is The Lowest Rate Always The Right Option
As a matter of fact, the lowest rate doesnt always indicate the right mortgage for you. There are various other factors to consider, such as the reputation of the lender, length of repayment plan, customer service, and other terms that apply to the loan. The combination of all of these factors will give you a good mortgage loan in general, and more importantly, the right loan for your specific situation. For example, someone who wants to take out a loan and pay it off over 30 years will not be well-served by a company that only offers 20-year repayment terms, even if it is offering competitive interest rates. Consider all the factors involved in the loan and not just the interest rate before deciding on a lender.
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Current Mortgage Rates In Massachusetts
Like in other states or countries, Mortgage rates in Massachusetts will have slight daily fluctuations due to various factors. That means there will be subtle changes, especially on the decimals. The main influences of these fluctuations in Massachusetts are the housing and bonds market in the state, Federal monetary policy, economic growth rate, and inflation. The current average mortgage rates in Massachusetts, as of 23rd September 2022, are around 6.41%.
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Usaa Federal Savings Bank
With more than 11 million members, USAA offers credit options exclusively to military personnel and their families. This banks specialized products and excellent customer service make it a great choice for people looking for no-down mortgages.
To qualify for a mortgage with USAA, an applicant must have a minimum credit score of 620 and a debt-to-income ratio of 50%. It is rated A- by the Better Business Bureau .
Pros of USAA
- They are known for their customer service.
- Their specialization is VA loans.
- They also provide refinancing options like IRRRL and Cash-Out Refinance loans.
Cons of USAA
- The bank is exclusively for service members and their families.
- It doesnt offer home equity loans, USDA loans, and FHA loans.
Best of USAA Federal Savings Bank
Some of the best offerings from USAA include the following:
- Conventional loans
- Refinance loans
- VA Home loans that do not require any downpayment
The bank also offers online services like loan tracking, account management, online preapproval, and document submission.
How USAA Made It to Our List?
In addition to having excellent customer service, USAA is also well-known for its willingness to work with individuals with poor credit histories for VA loans with no application fees.
Construction Loan Vs Renovation Loan
A construction loan is a short-term loan designed to help with the purchase of a plot of land and the construction of a home or pay for major renovations to an existing home.
A builder or borrower typically takes out a construction loan to cover the cost of building the house before securing a standard mortgage. The lender pays the builder in installments that follow each phase of construction. Before the completion of the project, borrowers usually only make interest payments and repay the loan once construction is complete.
Renovation loans, on the other hand, give homeowners access to funds to pay for home improvements. This funding can come in a variety of forms, such as a personal loan or a government-insured loan, or by taking out equity in your home. Overall, renovation loans arent as structured as construction loans, and borrowers have more options when it comes to accessing funds.
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Bethpage Federal Credit Union: Nmls#449104
Min. credit score
Bethpage FCU offers conventional loans with as little as 3% down.
at Bethpage Federal Credit Union
Why we like it
Bethpage has a good selection of loan options but no USDA mortgages or renovation loans. And while it offers multiple online conveniences, you have to contact the lender for customized rates.
Offers a full array of online conveniences, including loan process updates.
Offers financing for cooperatives, a type of home thats common on the East Coast.
Sample mortgage rates available for a variety of loan products.
In-person service available only in Queens and on Long Island, New York.
USDA loans are not available.
Customized rates not available online.
National / regional
Why we like it
Good for: home buyers and mortgage refinancers, including jumbo borrowers, who want a digital experience with limited guidance.
Excels in online convenience, with document upload, loan tracking and e-signatures.
Offers good rate transparency rate shoppers can see customized interest rates.
Limited variety of loan products: FHA, VA and USDA loans are unavailable.
Doesn’t offer home equity loans and lines of credit.
Best for variety of loan types
Alterra Home Loans Best For Spanish
Alterra Home Loans is a national mortgage lender founded with a mission of helping Hispanic first-time homebuyers. The company is one of the largest Hispanic-owned lenders in the country, with loan officers fluent in both English and Spanish. Alterra Home Loans offers both standard loan products and a special ITIN program for borrowers who dont have a Social Security number.
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How Do I Apply For A Mortgage As A First
For your first mortgage, look for a lender that gives you personal attention, guides you through the process, and provides access to programs, such as state down payment assistance. Once you find a lender, you can apply for your first mortgage the same as any other borrower. Just be sure to tell your lender you may qualify for first-time home buyer programs.
Experts’ Advice On Choosing The Best Mortgage Lender
- , mortgage broker, founder of Aragon Lending Team
- Laura Grace Tarpley, certified educator in personal finance, editor of banking and mortgage at Personal Finance Insider
Our experts have also provided advice about how to know whether you’re ready to get a mortgage, and how to decide which type of mortgage is best for you.
Here’s what they had to say about mortgages.
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How Much House Can I Afford
The first step in the homebuying process is to make a budget. First, consider how much you bring in each month and how much you spend . Most experts recommend spending no more than 30% of your gross monthly income on your mortgage, including taxes, insurance and applicable HOA fees. The Forbes Advisor affordability calculator will help you take the guesswork out of how much you can spend on a house.
What Should A First
A first-time home buyer is often at a disadvantage to more experienced buyers. You might have fewer funds available, student debt, or other financial issues that have held you back from buying your first home until now.
The good news is that first-time home buyers have some unique advantages, like first-time home buyer grants, too. For example, you might qualify for lower interest rates or a smaller down payment on your mortgage.
Mortgage interest rates have been dropping steadily for years and right now theyre lower than ever before. You can lock in an interest rate as low as 2.320% for a standard 30-year fixed-rate mortgage if you have good credit.
Even if your credit is less than stellar, first-time home buyers can find rates as low as 2.810%. You might also qualify for a first-time home buyer grant in the form of a government-backed mortgage which can lower your interest rate and down payment even further.
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Best For Heloc Or Mortgage Refinance: Figure
If youre looking to get a home equity line of credit or you want to refinance your mortgage, then you might want to consider this lender. Figure, a San-Francisco finance company run by blockchain technology, is one of the newest and fastest solutions for borrowers looking to access cash or renegotiate the terms of their existing mortgages. The company has already served more than 20,000 people and unlocked over $1 billion in equity for its members.
Rather than taking out a pricey personal loan or struggling under the pressure of a high interest rate on your current mortgage, Figure has a simple online application process to help prospective borrowers shopping or HELOCs, mortgage refinances, and cash-out refinances. If approved, borrowers can receive their funds or new loan terms in less than a week.
Veterans United Home Loans
Founded in 2002 and based in Columbia, Missouri, Veterans United Home Loans is a VA home loan lender with a $0 downpayment. They also offer non-VA loans and several other options.
After getting pre-approved, applicants can track the status of their loan application on MyVeteransUnited. They require applicants to have a minimum credit score of 640 for VA home loans, but 740 is recommended.
Pros of Veterans United Home Loans
- They offer specialized VA loans with no downpayment requirements.
- They also have non-VA loan options.
- There is no minimum loan amount.
Cons of Veterans United Home Loans
- You must have a minimum credit score of 640.
- HELOCs are not available.
Best of Veterans United Home Loans
They offer VA mortgages, conventional loans, USDA loans, jumbo loans, refinancing loans, and FHA loans.
Additionally, according to the Veterans United Home Loans Director of Education, every team member is well-versed in VA loans and knows whats best for you.
How Veterans United Home Loans Made It to Our List?
Based on more than 7,000 reviews, Veterans United Home Loans have been rated 5/5 for their customer service, 5/5 for affordability, and 3/5 for eligibility.
BNC National Bank
The North Dakota-based BNC National Bank offers mortgages nationwide, including conventional loans and refinancing services.
Their wide range of loans with low fees and consideration of alternative credit makes it extremely easy for first-time borrowers.
Pros of BNC National Bank
Cons of BNC National Bank
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