PrimeLending Review

    PrimeLending Review: Should You Choose This Lender To Finance Your Home?

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    Thanks to personalized quote calculators and AI-powered chatbots, you sometimes don’t even need to talk to a loan officer to start your mortgage application. But while technology can be a useful tool, it's also really helpful to work with a lender that doesn't take the human element away from getting a mortgage.

    That's where PrimeLending (a PlainsCapital company) comes in. PrimeLending boasts a large team of loan officers who are ready to help new homebuyers, homeowners who want to refinance their mortgage, and borrowers who need closing cost assistance.

    In this review of PrimeLending, we break down the different mortgage products that the company has to offer. We also evaluate its rates and application process to see how well they stack up against the competition.

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    What To Look For In A Mortgage Lender

    Before we start on our review, let’s take a look at the criteria we use to rate lenders:

    Available Loan Options

    The best lenders offer an extensive range of loan types, including:

    Conventional Loans

    Conventional loans are not insured by the federal government. They're ideal for people with good credit, a stable job/income, and the ability to pay a large down payment.

    While conventional loans are sometimes harder to get because of stricter requirements, they still come with a few advantages. They require less paperwork, their terms are more flexible, and they can be used for almost all types of properties.

    Under conventional loans, you can find the following subtypes:

    • Conforming loans: Conforming loans are government-sponsored mortgages. They follow national standards and requirements.
    • Non-conforming loans: Nonconforming loans have terms and guidelines set by the lender. Jumbo loans are considered non-conforming loans because they don't meet guidelines established by Fannie Mae, the Federal National Mortgage Association, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Association.

    Government-Backed Loans

    Government-backed loans are insured by the United States federal government. If someone fails to make their monthly payments, then the government will step in and help the lender recover their losses. Because of this mitigated risk, government-backed mortgages have more lenient credit requirements compared to conventional home loans.

    Rate Terms

    The best lenders have fixed-rate or adjustable-rate mortgage options. Here's a quick description of each:

    • Fixed-rate mortgage: A fixed-rate mortgage loan has an interest rate that remains consistent throughout the life of the loan. Monthly payments will never change, making it easier to predict and budget for. Generally, you can choose 5, 10, 15, or 30-year fixed-rate mortgages.
    • Adjustable-rate mortgage: An adjustable-rate mortgage has a lower starting rate that’s fixed for an agreed-upon period. Then, interest rates will increase annually based on market rates and performance.

    Mortgage Rates And Fees

    Interest rates determine how much a borrower will pay each month for their mortgage. Since affordability is a major factor in choosing the right lender, we evaluate mortgage providers based on the fees and rates they charge. 

    Application Process

    Applying for a mortgage can be stressful, but the best lenders make the process easy and convenient. When we review a lender's application process, we check the following:

    • Does the lender have a complete and easy-to-use online system?
    • Can the entire application be completed online?
    • How fast can they close the loan?

    Customer Service

    Customer service is one of the key aspects we look at when reviewing a mortgage company. We check the company's online reputation and its rating with the Better Business Bureau. We also note if complaints are resolved quickly and adequately.

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    PrimeLending Mortgage Review

    PrimeLending is a national lender from Texas that offers a full suite of mortgage products. The company takes pride in employing local loan officers who are part of the community they're working with. 

    If you're looking for a mortgage company that will closely guide you throughout the home loan application process, PrimeLending may be the one for you. In this section, we'll look at the pros and cons of choosing this lending company to finance your home.

    Available Home Loan Options

    PrimeLending offers new home construction and renovation loans. You can also turn to the company for refinancing. Here is a full list of the mortgage products offered by the company:

    Conventional Loans

    PrimeLending offers conventional loans for borrowers with good credit. You can choose between a fixed or adjustable-rate conventional home loan.

    Jumbo Loans

    If you're getting prime real estate, you can turn to PrimeLending for a jumbo loan. To qualify, you'll need the following:

    • A credit score above 700
    • A debt-to-income ratio lower than 43%
    • Cash reserves
    • Financial documentation (e.g. tax returns, W-2s, and 1099s)

    FHA Loans

    FHA loans are backed by the Federal Housing Administration. At PrimeLending, you can get an FHA loan with the following benefits:

    • 3.5% minimum down 
    • Flexible income and credit requirements
    • Low closing costs

    VA Loans

    A VA loan is offered to members of the military, their spouses, or those who have been honorably discharged from service. PrimeLending offers VA home loans with the following benefits:

    • No down payment
    • Higher loan value
    • No penalty for early payoffs
    • Limited closing costs
    • No private mortgage insurance
    • Possible VA assistance

    USDA Loans

    Like FHA, VA, and other government-backed loans, USDA loans are backed by the federal government. There is one major requirement: the property you buy must be in a rural area and not entirely farmland.

    USDA loans from PrimeLending come with the following benefits:

    • No down payment
    • Low-interest rates
    • Low private mortgage insurance payments
    • Flexible credit requirements
    • Up to 30-year fixed-rate loans

    New Construction Loans

    PrimeLending offers uniquely structured new construction loans. First, they'll offer you a temporary loan to start your construction project. Then, once construction is complete, they'll refinance your initial loan into a traditional mortgage.

    Down Payment Assistance Programs

    Some of the assistance programs available at PrimeLending include:

    • Conventional 97: This Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac-backed program allows borrowers to purchase single-unit primary residence properties with a down of 3%.
    • HomeReady: This Fannie Mae-backed program allows borrowers to get discounts on mortgage rates and private mortgage insurance. Borrowers are, however, required to make a 3% down.
    • Home Possible: A Freddie Mac mortgage option that's ideal for first-time homebuyers. For this, you'll only need a down of 3%.
    • 203 Renovation Loan: This mortgage covers the value of the property plus renovation costs. It's best for first-time homebuyers who are eyeing a fixer-upper. 

    Mortgage Rates And Fees

    PrimeLending can be considered an affordable option for home loan shoppers, mostly because it waives origination fees and lender fees. PrimeLending also offers mortgage rates that are comparable with most of its competitors.

    PrimeLending is known for its proprietary NeighborhoodEdge closing cost assistance program. Under this program, low- and moderate-income borrowers can get up to $1,500 to $2,000 in closing cost assistance, depending on income and the location of the property they want to buy.

    Additionally, PrimeLending offers an interest float-down option that allows you to lower the interest rate of your loan once within 20 days of closing, typically to take advantage of improved market rates. As with most lenders, PrimeLending also offers discount points to reduce your mortgage rates.

    Application Process

    PrimeLending has a streamlined application process, but it might not be the most ideal for people who prefer to handle all their transactions online.

    You can start the home loan application process through the website, but you'll need a professional property appraisal before you can proceed. Additionally, a loan officer has to manually review your application and other documents prior to approval.

    Customer Service

    PrimeLending has a complete online system where borrowers can upload documents and check the status of their applications. Borrowers can also contact a local loan officer for assistance.

    PrimeLending has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. It has received 31 complaints in the past three years.

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau cited 23 mortgage complaints related to PrimeLending in 2019. The company responded to all these complaints and closed them with an explanation.

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    Pros

    • Rate float-down option: If interest rates improve within 20 days from closing a deal, PrimeLending gives you a one-time option to lower your rates.
    • Minimal fees: Lender closing costs – including origination, processing, underwriting, and closing fees – can be waived.
    • New construction and renovation loans available: PrimeLending offers loans to people purchasing fixer-uppers. They can also refinance a home construction loan into a traditional mortgage.
    • Flexible credit requirements: PrimeLending offers various government-backed mortgage products for first-time homebuyers and borrowers with less-than-ideal credit.

    Cons

    • No mortgage rates on the website: If you want a ballpark figure of how much your home loan will cost, you're out of luck. You'll need to use the loan calculator and start the application process before you can take a peek at their mortgage rates.
    • Limited loan products: PrimeLending does not offer home equity loans or home equity lines of credit.

    The Bottom Line

    PrimeLending is a national lender that offers mortgage products for people who want to finance a home purchase, construction, or renovation. If you prefer working with a local loan officer when processing a mortgage, then this company may be ideal for you.

    If you want to learn more about mortgage lenders and products, get in touch with our team at Wesley Mortgage, LLC! We'll help you look for the best lender in your area.

    Written By Ed Wallace
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