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Best Mortgage Lenders of July 2021
Get current mortgage interest rates
Comparing different mortgage loans can help you get the most current rates. Check our leading mortgage lenders to find the best home loan for purchase or investment today.
Best Mortgage Lenders of July 2021
Comparing different mortgage loans can help you get the most current rates. Check our leading mortgage lenders to find the best home loan for purchase or investment today.
Best Mortgage Lenders of July 2021
How We Score
We show product scores to help you choose the right mortgage for you. Here’s how they’re calculated
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
TrustPilot Score
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
User Engagement Score
Our User Engagement score is rated on a scale of 3.00-5.00, and is calculated based on the number of clicks a brand’s chart listing has received in the past 7 days. The greater the proportion of clicks a specific brand receives relative to the other brands listed on the chart, the higher their user engagement score.
The User Engagement score is calculated separately based on the user’s device (mobile engagement is scored independently of desktop engagement, for example), and also by the specific type of mortgage loan they are comparing.
The brand’s chart position is influenced by the compensation we receive from such brand. In some cases, this may also impact a brand’s User Engagement score.
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Our Score
8.4
Very Good
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 18,178 Reviews
4.4
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
8.4
Very Good
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 7,133 Reviews
4.9
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
7.6
Good
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 3,249 Reviews
3.8
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
9.5
Outstanding
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 610 Reviews
4.5
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
No available score
Direct Lender or Marketplace
Direct lenders provide loans to borrowers. Marketplaces help borrowers compare direct lenders.
Direct
Direct
Direct
Direct
Marketplace
Minimum Credit Score
630+
640+
630+
630+
580+
Minimum Down Payment
Lowest down payment across all mortgage products.
0%
0%
0%
3%
0%
Bottom Line
Nation’s largest mortgage lender
America's largest VA loan lender
Fast Streamlined Application
No fees & commissions
View Rates without Hard Credit Pull
Core Features
Advertises Rates
Market-Beating Rates
Pro
Quick application and closure
Loan agents operate 24/7
Completely online lender
Best-rate guarantee
270 partnering VA lenders
Con
Live chat only available in business hours
No live chat
No physical branches
Only in 44 states
No conventional or FHA loans
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
Non-Conventional Loans
Government-backed loans such as FHA, VA, and USDA.
Cash Out Refinance
Alternative way of using home equity to borrow cash
HE/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
Customer Support
More Info
Bottom line
Nation’s largest mortgage lender
America's largest VA loan lender
Fast Streamlined Application
No fees & commissions
View Rates without Hard Credit Pull
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 18,178 Reviews
4.4
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
1
Low Rates
  • America’s largest mortgage lender
  • Real-time updates on loan progress
  • Custom loans to suit your goals
8.4
Very Good
View Rates
Read Review
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 7,133 Reviews
4.9
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
2
  • America’s largest VA loan provider
  • Free expert advice from Veterans
  • Loan agents operate 24/7
8.4
Very Good
View Rates
Read Review
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 3,249 Reviews
3.8
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
3
  • Digital-only mortgage platform
  • Loans customized to your needs
  • Fast Streamlined Application
7.6
Good
View Rates
Read Review
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 610 Reviews
4.5
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
4
  • Free rate-lock feature
  • Instant loan estimates
  • Top-rated lender with no fees or commissions
9.5
Outstanding
View Rates
Read Review
Looking to refinance your mortgage?
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 8,448 Reviews
4.2
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
1
Low Rates
  • Get pre-qualified in 3 minutes
  • View rates without hard credit Pull
  • Digital lender with strong reputation
8.0
Very Good
View Rates
Read Review
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 610 Reviews
4.5
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
2
  • Free rate-lock feature
  • Instant loan estimates
  • Top-rated lender with no fees or commissions
9.5
Outstanding
View Rates
Read Review
Our brand scores, which are rated on a scale up to 10, are a sum of the TrustPilot and User Engagement scores
Based on 18,178 Reviews
4.4
TrustPilot is an open, global platform where users write product reviews and assign products a star rating. In the event that a product does not have a TrustPilot score, their score will be based solely on the User Engagement score (see below).
3
  • America’s largest mortgage lender
  • Real-time updates on loan progress
  • Custom loans to suit your goals
8.4
Very Good
View Rates
Read Review
Comparing the Top Mortgage Lenders
Whether you’re a first-time buyer or you’ve done this before, purchasing a new home is always a complex process. Getting a mortgage can be particularly challenging given the costs, fees, and paperwork involved. The purpose of this website is to help you understand how to get a mortgage for your home purchase and compare the best mortgage lenders. We’ll tell you everything you need to know about the mortgage lending market so you don’t have to go to the trouble of researching it yourself.
Types of Mortgages
Conventional Home Loans
The most common form of mortgage is a conventional mortgage, also known as a conforming loan. This type of home loans involves two parties: the borrower (you) and the lender. Most lenders require at least a 20% down payment on a conventional mortgage, e.g., if the home costs $300,000, the lender requires at least a $60,000 down payment and loans out the remaining $240,000. In recent years, an increasing number of lenders have begun offering low down payment mortgages with minimum down payment of as little as 3%.
Jumbo Loans
Jumbo loans are loans that exceed the legal conforming loan limits set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). Because jumbo loans involve more money and therefore greater risk to the lender, they typically have stricter qualifying requirements. In 2021, the maximum conforming loan limit at $548,250 in most U.S. counties, meaning any loan above that amount is considered a jumbo loan. The limit is higher in some counties with higher property prices, going as high as $822,375 in America’s most expensive counties – namely the greater New York, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, and Los Angeles areas, the entire states of Alaska and Hawaii, and a handful of wealthy small towns in various states. If you’re buying in Dallas or St Louis, to give two examples, a jumbo loan is anything above $548,250; but if you’re buying in Los Angeles or an exclusive ski town like Aspen, Colorado, a jumbo limit is anything above $822,375.
FHA Loans
This is a government-backed loan administered by the Federal Housing Administration for buyers with poor credit or little money for a down payment. FHA loans come in two forms: 3.5% down payment for borrowers with credit of 580-619, or 10% down payment for borrowers with 500-579 credit. The one catch with FHA loans is that it requires monthly private mortgage insurance (PMI), which you can stop paying once you reach 20% equity. Many, but not all, mortgage lenders offer FHA loans. Most lenders only offer FHA loans to borrowers with credit of 580+ or 600+, but a handful serve borrowers with as little as 500 credit. Therefore, if you have poor credit, it pays to shop around for FHA loans.
VA Loans
VA loans are a government-backed loan administered by the Department of Veteran Affairs. The minimum credit requirement for a VA loan is usually 620+, the same as a conventional loan, but the big prize here is the down payment requirement or rather the lack of one. That’s right: VA loans don’t require any down payment, so you can take out a loan for the full value of the property. The following people may apply for a VA loan: veterans who have served at least 90 consecutive days of active service in wartime or 181 days of active service in peacetime; members of the National Guard and Reserve who have served at least 6 years; and spouses of veterans who died in the line of duty or as a consequence of a service-related injury.
USDA Loans
Like other government-backed loans, lenders may only offer USDA loans to borrowers who meet the qualifying requirements – in this case, the main requirement is purchasing in a rural or semi-rural area. USDA mortgages require no down payment but do require monthly PMI until you reach 20% equity.
Types of Rates
Fixed-Rate Mortgages
Fixed-rate mortgages are the most common type of mortgage, especially among first-time home buyers. As the name suggests, fixed-rate mortgages are mortgages with fixed rates for the entire duration of the loan. When you take a fixed-rate mortgage, you pay more in year one than you would with an adjustable-rate mortgage. However, you protect yourself from the risk of having to pay a higher rate and higher monthly installments later in life. Given that interest rates are close to all-time lows in 2021, the only direction that rates can realistically go from here is upward – which is why locking in a fixed-rate mortgage is currently a better option than betting on an adjustable rate.
Adjustable-Rate Mortgages
Adjustable-rate mortgages, also known as ARMs or variable-rate mortgages, carry higher risk and higher reward than fixed rates. An ARM is always cheaper than a fixed-rate mortgage in year one, but it carries the risk of higher interest rates in the long-term. ARMs have two components: the number of years the initial rate gets locked in for; and the intervals at which rates get updated. Most lenders offer ARMs of 3/1, 5/1, 7/1, or 10/1. A 3/1 ARM refers to an ARM with a fixed rate for the first three years and a rate update every year after that. The shorter your fixed period, the better your introductory rate (and the riskier the loan). Because of their unpredictable nature, ARMs are best for borrowers with high risk appetite or borrowers who plan on selling the home or paying off the mortgage early.
Average Mortgage Rates for Purchase Loans
Each lender sets its own mortgage rates, with some updating rates on a daily basis. Of course, the market in which the lenders operate is the same for everyone, and all lenders are influenced by the Federal Reserve’s benchmark interest rate, so all lenders tend to fall within a certain range at any given time.
As of April 1 2021, the average mortgage rates were:
  • 3.18% for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage
  • 2.45% for a 15-year fixed rate mortgage
  • 2.84% for a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage
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
  • Recent pay stubs
  • W-2s or I-9 from the past two years
  • Proof of other sources of income
  • Federal tax returns
  • Recent bank statements
  • Details of other debts, e.g., auto loans or student loans
Our Top Mortgage Lenders
#1
View Rates
Pros
  • 100% online application (in most cases)
  • Quick pre-approval and closing times
  • Flexible repayment terms (8-29 years)
Cons
  • No branches
  • Lack of support for self-employed borrowers
  • Your data may be shared across Quicken partners
If you’re looking for an easy and comfortable loan, QuickLoans can help. Not only do QuickenLoans help ensure you get a mortgage that’s right for you to save time, but the platform ensures you are aware of your loans status 24/7 so you can keep track of what is required of you and what has already been done to avoid repeating steps that have already been completed, saving you time and confusion.
#2
View Rates
Pros
  • Specialist VA lender
  • No need for down payment
  • 24/7 customer support
Cons
  • No conventional loans
  • No FHA loans
Veterans United Home Loans is a private mortgage lender specializing in VA Loans. In fact, it is America’s largest VA Loans provider, accounting for 8.5% of all the VA Loans issued in 2019. Veterans United is operated by Mortgage Research Center, LLC, a privately owned company based in Columbia, MO. It offers VA Loans to eligible borrowers in all 50 states.
#3
View Rates
Pros
  • Digital-only mortgage platform
  • Loans customized to your needs
Cons
  • Only cash-out refinance option is available
  • No physical branches
One thing makes Rocket Mortgage stand out from all other mortgage lenders: speed. Some lenders might be able to offer you better rates, others might offer great customer service, but few come close to matching Rocket for speed. This might seem like a small thing, but speed is important in the mortgage industry. Getting stuck with a time-consuming mortgage application and not even knowing whether you’ll get approved can be costly in terms of both time and energy. With Rocket, you know where you stand within a few minutes of applying and you can save time by having all your documentation verified automatically.
What to Look for When Comparing Mortgages
APR
The monthly payments on a mortgage comprise principal, as in the amount remaining on your loan, and interest, as in the money the lender collects for providing the loan. Your APR, or annual percentage rate, consists of the interest rate plus certain other lender fees. The lower the interest rate / APR, the lower your monthly payments to the lender.
Terms
The repayment term, or loan duration, is another important factor when comparing mortgages. The typical repayment term is 15-30 years although some lenders offer mortgages with terms as short as eight years. There is no right or wrong when it comes to repayment terms; what’s best for you depends largely on how much you can afford to pay each month. The shorter the term, the higher your monthly payments but the less you’ll pay in interest over the life of the loan. The longer the term, the lower your monthly payments but the more you’ll pay your lender in the long run.
Closing costs
Closing costs are the fees and charges owed to the lender when the loan begins and usually range from 2-6% of the loan value. Therefore, if you take out a $300,000 loan and your closing costs are 3%, this means you’ll pay the lender $9,000 in upfront fees. Closing costs may include origination fees, property appraisal, title fees, taxes, and various other costs – some of which go directly to the lender and some which the lender collects on behalf of third parties. Closing costs vary from lender to lender, so knowing each lender’s approximate closing costs can assist you in doing a proper comparison.
Ease of application
Gone are the days when you had to walk into a physical branch to apply for a mortgage. These days, the best mortgage lenders let you apply online, sometimes through a fully automated online mortgage platform and other times with phone assistance from a loan agent. If convenience is important to you, then keep an eye out for digital-friendly lenders.
Transparency
Customer service is always important, but even more so when we’re talking about six-figure deals. Always search for a lender that’s transparent about rates and fees, open about the requirements, and has good reviews. Be suspicious of lenders that hide or make it difficult to find important information.
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The Best Home Equity Lenders in 2021
Own your own home? In need of cash to pay for a renovation, medical expenses, college tuition, or some other major expense? You may be able to use a home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC) to tap into your equity to access funds.
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The Best Lenders for First-Time Buyers in 2021
Being a first-time home buyer is about more than just becoming a home owner for the first time. Qualified first-time buyers may be eligible for conventional low down payment loans such as the Fannie Mae HomeReady and Freddie Mac Home Possible loan programs, government-backed low down payment loans such as the FHA loan, and zero down payment loans such as the VA loan for veterans and service people.
Read More
The Best VA Mortgage Lenders in 2021
More than 25 million VA loans have been issued since the program was established in 1944, including more than one million in 2020. If you’re a service member, veteran, or surviving spouse who meets the VA’s eligibility rules, then the VA loan program could be the mortgage for you. A VA loan requires no down payment and no private mortgage insurance, giving it a clear advantage over alternatives like conventional loans and FHA loans.
Read More
Guide to Zero and Low Down Payment Mortgages
They say a house is the biggest purchase you’ll ever make, but the truth is you don’t actually need much money to buy one. That’s all thanks to low down payment mortgages, which allow most people to qualify for a mortgage with as little as 3% down payment (and zero down payment in some cases).
Read More
Refinance Rates and Costs: Everything You Need to Know
For many homeowners, a major incentive of refinancing is the potential to lower the interest rate and monthly payments on their mortgage.
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Comparing 15-Year Mortgages vs. 30-Year Mortgages
When applying for a mortgage, there are few more important decisions you’ll need to make than your repayment term. A repayment term, also known as loan term or loan duration, determines how long you have to pay off the loan. Mortgage repayment terms generally range from 10-30 years, and the most common are 15-year mortgages and 30-year mortgages.
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No Closing Cost Mortgages Explained
While searching for mortgage lenders, you may have come across the intriguing term “no closing cost mortgage”, also known as a “zero closing cost mortgage”. In this article, we’ll explain the meaning of a no closing cost mortgage and give you the tools to decide if it’s right for you. But before explaining the meaning of a no closing cost mortgage, we first have to understand the concept of closing costs.
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Complete Guide to Home Equity Loans and HELOCs in 2021
Owning your own home has many advantages, one of which is the leverage it gives you when you need to finance a major expense like a home improvement or debt consolidation. While non-homeowners are restricted to paying 10-20% interest for a personal loan, homeowners have the option of borrowing at 3-7% with a home equity loan in 2021.
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10 Factors To Consider When Comparing Mortgage Lenders in 2021
This is undoubtedly the year of the borrower. Interest rates are still at record lows across all types of loans in 2021 following the Federal Reserve’s emergency COVID-19 rate cuts last year. The mortgage lending market remains as competitive as ever, with more than 5,500 banks, credit unions, and other lenders fighting for borrowers’ attention.
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Credit Score: Key to Getting the Best Mortgage Interest Rates in 2021
Lenders take numerous factors into account when assessing mortgage applications, but the most important factor of all is personal credit scores. Your credit score is an indicator of your ability to pay back your loan, hence why lenders look at it closely before deciding whether to approve or reject you and whether to offer you a low or high-interest rate.
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How to Decide if Now is the Right Time to Refinance Your Mortgage
With interest rates near record lows, now must be a good time to refinance your mortgage, right? For many people, this is a great time to refinance, but in some circumstances, it might not be a good idea. There are many factors to consider when thinking about refinancing, so keep reading for the full breakdown.
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Complete Guide to Mortgage Loan Products in 2021
Searching for a mortgage is like searching for a home – they come in all shapes and sizes. When buying a home, people usually think about which area they want to buy and how much they’re willing to spend before approaching real estate agents. The same goes for mortgages: first, you need to know which type of mortgage you prefer before going shopping for a mortgage lender.
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The 7-Step Checklist for First-Time Home Buyers
Buying your first home can be an exciting but daunting process. After years of renting or living in the family home, you’re finally ready to become a homeowner. But where do you start? Read on for our checklist of the seven key steps to buying and financing your first home purchase.
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How Long Can Mortgage Rates Stay Near Historical Lows?
It may be hard to believe, but mortgages are almost the cheapest they have been at any time in American history. The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage stood at 3.13% at the start of April 2021, and while this is a slight increase from the low of 2.65% recorded on January 6, it is actually lower than at any other time in history before the coronavirus hit in early 2020. In fact, mortgage rates never went below 5% until the global financial crisis in 2007-09 and double-digit rates were fairly common in the 1970s, ‘80s and early ‘90s.
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