Contrary to its title, the National Bank of Kansas City serves clients across the entire United States. The small community bank of 300 employees has achieved impressive success in providing loans in all 50 states.
The award-winning national mortgage company funds conventional, VA, and FHA loans with relatively low rates and fees. It also provides a fully-online application process that allows users to track their progress.
Overall, the NBKC has been hailed as a dependable and reputable mortgage lender. But how do they live up to their claims? In this NBKC Bank mortgage review, you’ll learn how they measure up in coverage, the application process, and customer support.
What To Look For In Mortgage Insurance Companies
Before we take a closer look at the NBKC Bank, below are five factors you should consider when shopping for a lender.
Policy And Coverage
There are many types of home loans available on the market – below are some of the most common:
Conventional Mortgages: Conventional loans are available through private lenders and do not receive government-backed financing. Conforming conventional mortgages adhere to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines, which impose loan limits for various properties. Non-conforming conventional loans exceed loan limits.
FHA Loans: FHA mortgages are insured by the Federal Housing Administration, catering to borrowers who have a poor credit history and a higher debt-to-income ratio. With an FHA mortgage, applicants can borrow up to 96.5% of the home value and make a down payment as low as 3.5%.
VA Loans: The Department of Veterans Affairs offers VA mortgages to military service members. VA loans don’t require a down payment or mortgage insurance. Applicants can also use a VA loan to purchase a second home or refinance an existing mortgage.
Each lender will have a different set of eligibility criteria, loan limits, term lengths, and fees. Determine the best possible lender by taking note of how much coverage you need and for how long.
Home loan applications can make for a tedious process – particularly for first-time homeowners. On average, it can take anywhere from 10 to 45 days to close a mortgage. Between reviewing your credit report and coming up with a down payment, it may take even longer. A dependable mortgage lender will help expedite the process from pre-approval to closing.
Furthermore, many mortgage companies offer fully-online applications if you cannot meet with a real estate agent in person. In most cases, you can request custom quotes on a mortgage lender’s website.
From there, lenders will review your application and resume the underwriting process. If any of the quoted fees or rates change, a lender should be able to explain why. Once your rates are secure, you and your lender will move on to closing.
Various economic and personal factors determine your mortgage rate. Among these include:
Economic Growth: A healthy economy produces higher incomes, which promotes consumer spending. The more in-demand the housing market is, the higher mortgage rates and fees skyrocket.
Financial Health: Aspects of your financial history, such as your credit score and debt-to-income ratio, may influence the interest rate on your mortgage. Typically, the lower the credit score and the higher the debt-to-income ratio, the higher the interest rate. The average American has a credit score of 711.
Property Price & Borrowing Amount: Lenders assess your borrowing risk by calculating your loan-to-value ratio. To do this, they divide the loan amount by the appraised home value. The higher your loan-to-value ratio, the higher your rate will be.
Down Payment: While some mortgage lenders will not require a down payment, paying a more considerable amount can lower your interest rate. Making a down payment of at least 20% will also eliminate the need to pay private mortgage insurance (PMI).
Do you want to find out what your mortgage rate might be? Give our financial calculator a try.
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Many mortgages will last upwards of at least ten years. Thus, you’ll want to work with a mortgage company that satisfies your borrowing needs and provides excellent customer service.
To get the full scope of how a mortgage company performs, we study customer reviews and ratings from third-party agencies such as the Better Business Bureau (BBB). The BBB helps businesses maintain transparency, promotes advertiser disclosure and rates their policies according to customer reviews and marketplace behavior.
As a rule of thumb, spend time studying a mortgage lender’s website and social channels. Take note of any negative reviews and whether they have been appropriately addressed.
Finally, consider how accessible your mortgage lender is. Do they have an open hotline for inquiries and complaints? Is their website equipped with useful chat features and other methods of contacting a business representative? A trustworthy mortgage lender will be reachable whenever necessary.
NBKC Mortgage Review
The National Bank of Kansas City was founded in 1999 and is currently headquartered in Missouri. It houses four primary branches within Kansas City and provides online access for customers who reside elsewhere in the United States.
NBKC offers a substantial variety of mortgage products that include:
Conventional fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages
Rate-and-term or cash-out refinancing
It also provides traditional banking options and other types of home loans.
If you are after competitive closing costs, flexible refinancing options, and have an average credit score, NBKC makes for a good choice. On BBB, NBKC Bank is listed as an accredited business with an overall score of A+. On many other third-party review websites, NBKC has an average rating of 5 stars. It is also FDIC-insured and searchable via NMLS ID.
Policy And Coverage
NBKC Bank offers several home loans to nationwide customers, save for home equity and construction loans which are only available to Kansas City-area borrowers. It specializes in VA lending, which made up 32% of its mortgage portfolio in 2019.
Below is a quick overview of each type of NBKC Bank mortgage.
NBKC Conventional Loans
NBKC offers fixed and adjustable-rate conventional loans. It offers 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30-year fixed-rate terms. Applicants who want to lock in a lower interest rate can also apply for an adjustable-rate loan. NBKC’s most popular adjustable-rate home loan is the 5/1 ARM.
NBKC FHA Loans
NBKC’s FHA home loans cater to applicants with small savings and low credit scores. They accept a down payment of as low as 3.5%. However, NBKC FHA mortgages require private mortgage insurance.
NBKC FHA Streamline Refinance And Refi Plus
If you’re interested in reducing your monthly payment, you can apply for an FHA Streamline Refinance. This loan product allows you to change your term or cash out a portion of your equity.
Conventional loan holders whose homes have decreased in value can qualify for the Refi Plus Program. This program allows borrowers to avoid paying PMI after refinancing their loans.
NBKC VA Loans
NBKC’s most popular home loan is the VA mortgage and Streamline Refinance. These cost-effective programs don’t charge lender, processing, underwriting, or origination fees.
However, its VA loans do require a funding fee, which amounts to 2.3% of the total borrowing amount. Disabled veterans can qualify for a funding fee waiver.
NBKC Jumbo Loans
NBKC conventional loans have a current borrowing cap of $548,2050. If you need to borrow an amount larger than this, you can apply for a fixed-rate jumbo loan.
Other Loan Types
You can only apply for construction or home equity loans with NBKC if you live within Kansas City. Otherwise, you are limited to the loan types listed above. Unfortunately, NBKC does not offer USDA loans or renovation mortgages.
Compared to other commercial lenders, NBKC Bank offers highly competitive interest rates. Potential applicants can preview their mortgage rates by providing an NBKC loan officer with the following information:
The state in which you reside
Your estimated or actual credit score
The type and price of your selected property
The estimated down payment you can afford
Ultimately, these factors will determine your closing costs and final interest rates. You can further reduce your rate by purchasing discount points upon closing.
Lender fees will vary depending on the loan you apply for. However, origination fees begin at $675. If you are a military service member, you can eliminate your origination fee by applying for a VA loan.
You can try estimating your mortgage rate with our financial calculator.
If you live in the Kansas City area, you can apply for an NBKC mortgage at a branch in one of these locations:
If you reside in any of the other 50 states, you can calculate your rate by applying for a home loan online. NBKC’s online applications allow you to track your progress remotely.
Below are the documents you will have to submit:
Two of your most recent W-2s
Two of your most recent bank statements
Verification for your active income sources
Full records of your banking and investment accounts
A list of all your outstanding debts
You can also access your application status via the NBKC mobile application and sign documents digitally. But if you prefer to transact over the phone, you can select a loan officer by name on the NBKC official website.
To qualify for a conventional or jumbo home loan with NBKC, you will need a minimum credit score of 620. If you apply for a VA or FHA loan, you must have a credit score of at least 580. You can improve your credit rating and secure better rates by paying off existing debts, such as those on credit cards.
Depending on the loan type you apply for, you’ll need to make a down payment of at least 3%. However, this might mean paying higher interest rates and additional insurance fees. VA loans, on the other hand, don’t require a down payment.
Customer Satisfaction And Service
NBKC is hailed for its spectacular customer service – you’ll find that many client reviews rave about a great experience with NBKC’s loan officers and online platform.
As we mentioned earlier, NBKC has an A+ rating with the BBB and boasts 5 stars on many other review websites. Since 2018, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has not received any complaints regarding NBKC mortgages.
Applicants can access customer service channels over the phone and via online chat during business hours. Furthermore, potential homebuyers can also access NBKC’s Homebuying Information Center. Here, they can calculate mortgage rates with a financial calculator and read through a Homebuying 101 digital brochure.
Mortgage products are available in all 50 states: Though NBKC only has physical branches within Kansas City, anyone in the United States can apply for a mortgage. Over-the-phone and online processes make it easy for applicants to undergo the underwriting process.
Refinancing options are incredibly flexible: If you are more interested in refinancing your loan instead of applying for a new one, NBKC offers flexible solutions. FHA borrowers can refinance their homes with little to no documentation via NBKC’s FHA Streamline Refinance. Meanwhile, conventional borrowers can avoid PMI and higher mortgage rates when refinancing by applying for the Refi Plus Program.
VA loans don’t charge lender fees: If you’re a military service member applying for a VA mortgage with NBKC, you’re in luck – you don’t have to pay an origination fee.
Customer help is always available: Borrowers can easily contact their mortgage lenders or loan officers via the NBKC mobile application at any time. Yes, that also means after office hours.
They do not offer home equity loans to customers outside of Missouri: Unfortunately, you cannot apply for a home equity product with NBKC if you live outside of Kansas City.
Brick-and-mortar locations are limited to Kansas: If you prefer to apply for a mortgage in person, you might be better off doing business with another lender. NBKC only has four physical branches within Missouri.
No down payment assistance programs: While NBKC offers competitive rates, it does not provide a down payment assistance program. Thus, borrowers who want to reduce their mortgage rates must find alternative ways to supplement a larger down payment.
They do not offer low-credit conventional mortgage options: While you can qualify for a VA or FHA mortgage with a FICO rating as low as 580, you won’t have much luck applying for a conventional mortgage with bad credit. You must make the minimum credit requirement of 620.
The Bottom Line
If you are looking for a mortgage lender that offers competitive rates, accepts average credit, and boasts rave reviews online, you might hit the jackpot with NBKC. NBKC is an especially good choice if you’re seeking an affordable VA lender that doesn’t charge an origination fee.
If you are a first-time homebuyer with limited credit, we highly recommend NBKC. On the other hand, if you are looking for a home equity or renovation mortgage, you might be better off looking elsewhere.
Are you still on the hunt for the best mortgage around? Our experts at Wesley Mortgage, LLC can help guide your decision and secure your dream home. Read the rest of our blog for more helpful reviews and other valuable resources.