Posted on November 6th, 2020
If you’ve been shopping mortgage rates online, you may have stumbled upon a lender by the name of Lending.com, which is apparently both a lender and a domain name.
Indeed, they decided to brand themselves as a website address because they are a direct-to-consumer mortgage lender that lives exclusively online.
It turns out Lending.com is actually a division of a much larger mortgage company called Finance of America Mortgage, which recently went public.
And that seems to be an emerging trend; larger financial companies creating smaller tech-oriented brands that are highly focused on a particular niche, such as online mortgage lending.
Lending.com Fast Facts
- Direct-to-consumer mortgage lender based in Charlotte, North Carolina
- Appear to only be a few years old (formerly known as eRates Mortgage)
- Owned by a much larger lender called Finance of America Mortgage LLC
- Licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia (not available in NY state)
- Offer all types of consumer mortgages including purchase loans, refis, renovation loans, HELOCs, and reverse mortgages
As noted, Lending.com is a dba of Finance of America Mortgage, which means they’ve got the backing of a very large, publicly traded company.
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While being big isn’t necessarily a good or a bad thing, it at least gives you an idea of who you’re dealing with – they’re not a small shop.
If you happen to be a homeowner or home buyer in California, they actually do business as Finance of America Mortgage LLC.
And if you live or want to live in New York state, you won’t be able to use Lending.com to get a home loan, at least not at the moment.
However, they appear to be licensed in the other 49 states and DC, which is a good thing for the rest of us.
In terms of their company history, I wasn’t able to track down all the details, but Lending.com was a B2R company as recently as 2017 before the domain name was ostensibly sold to Finance of America.
Simply put, they appear to the online mortgage lender division of FOA, with the valuable domain name the crown jewel here.
Getting a Mortgage from Lending.com
- You can call them up directly, apply online, or request a rate quote on their website
- They allow you to apply for a home loan digitally with the help of a human lending team
- Operate completely online and remotely so you can’t visit a physical branch
- Processing, underwriting, and funding all done in-house to streamline and simplify loan process
Lending.com is all about making lending easy, so you can apply by phone or via the website.
If using their website, you simply click on “Apply Now” to get started, at which point you’ll be prompted to create an account.
This will allow you to fill out the loan application at your own speed, save you progress, and revisit it if needed.
Assuming you apply yourself, you’ll be automatically partnered with a loan officer, whose contact information will be listed on the right side of the application screen.
You can email or call that individual to discuss loan options if you want some input, or if you need someone to walk you through the process.
A loan processor will also help you with things like documentation retrieval, satisfying loan conditions, and so on.
Alternatively, you can fill out the rate quote form on their website if you select “buy a home” or “refinance,” at which point someone will reach out to you directly.
You could argue for the second option (or to call directly) if you just want to get pricing first, before diving in and applying.
Regardless, you’ve got plenty of options, whether you’re a DIYer or someone new to the mortgage world.
Loan Types Offered by Lending.com
- Home purchase loans
- Refinance loans (rate and term, cash out, streamline)
- Home renovation loans
- Home equity lines of credit (HELOCs)
- Reverse mortgages
- Conforming loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
- Jumbo home loans
- Government-backed loans: FHA, USDA, and VA
- Fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages in varying loan terms available
While they don’t actually list the types of loans they offer on their website, my assumption is they offer everything (or most things) that Finance of America Mortgage offers.
And the expectation is that you can take out either a fixed-rate mortgage and an adjustable-rate mortgage in varying loan terms.
It is a bit disappointing that they don’t have a page dedicated to available loan programs, but they appear to be keeping things super simple on their website.
Lending.com Mortgage Rates
While their website says, “Low Rates. 24/7,” they don’t actually list their mortgage rates anywhere on their website.
In fact, their website is pretty basic, with no mention of rates or loan programs. The same goes for lender fees, which makes it difficult to assess a lot of things.
However, they do advertise a fair bit on Zillow, so if you’re comparing rates on Zillow, you might come across Lending.com’s rates.
I did a test search on Zillow and found that they offered mortgage rates in line with other online mortgage lenders like Sebonic Financial, which are generally the cheapest around relative to big banks and brand name mortgage lenders.
Additionally, they advertise with $1 lender fees, so if it’s a refinance there’s a good chance you’ll be able to go the no cost refinance route and avoid expensive closing costs, while still securing a relatively low rate.
But it would be nice if they listed their rates and fees on their own website.
On Zillow, they have a 4.62-star rating out of 5 based on nearly 3,000 customer reviews, which is generally considered great, though perhaps just shy of excellent.
A good portion of borrowers from those reviews indicated that the interest rate was lower than expected, which gives us another clue about their pricing.
You can also filter by loan officer on Zillow, so if you want to fine-tune and pick a specific individual to work with first, this could be one way of going about it. Then simply call that person directly or ask for them by name.
On Bankrate, Lending.com has a 4.3-star rating out of 5 on about 300 reviews, with an 83% recommendation rate.
While Lending.com is not Better Business Bureau accredited, they do have an A+ rating at the moment, which is based on customer complaint history.
All in all, they appear to have good to great reviews from most past customers, though there appears to be some room for improvement.
One nagging issue for me is the brand ambiguity between Finance of America Mortgage and Lending.com, which at times seem to be one in the same.
Lending.com Pros and Cons
- Can apply for a mortgage digitally online
- Lots of different loan programs to choose from including HELOCs
- Great reviews from past customers
- Free mortgage calculators on site
- A+ BBB rating
- Backed by a large, publicly-traded company
- Not licensed in the state of New York
- Do not publicize their mortgage rates or lender fees
- Website is a little bare-bones (could use more information)
- Some brand confusion regarding FOA Mortgage and Lending.com being affiliated companies