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Sunday, September 19th
Better is one of the newest mortgage brokers online, but you'll quickly see why they've risen to the top of our rankings for mortgage refinancing. They describe their services as "digital convenience with a human touch", and we couldn't agree more!
Fast, Friendly, And Flawless
Everything about our experience with Better was fast, friendly, and flawless from start to finish. The company doesn't exaggerate when they say that they can get you a preapproval letter and lock in your rate in a matter of minutes, and close up to twice as fast as most of their competitors.
Getting Started With Your Refinance
You'll get started with Better by entering all of the information you'd expect: property address and type, estimated home value, plus your mobile phone and last 4 digits of your SSN for identity verification (which does a soft pull of your credit). The very next screen will show your credit score and whether or not you qualify to proceed with your mortgage refinancing with Better.
Income And Goals
From there, Better asks about your annual income, co-borrower details, current mortgage payments (which will autofill from your credit history), your goals in refinancing your mortgage, and assets.
Real-time Loan Options
Once you've submitted all of those details, you'll get to our absolute favorite part of using Better: real-time loan options. Click on "Find your loan" to see all of the possibilities for your refi. Under Loan Estimate preferences, you can indicate whether your taxes and insurance will be held in escrow or be paid directly. This is just for purposes of your Loan Estimate page and not a final commitment to one or the other. You'll also see an estimated closing date, but that's not set in stone either. (The date it gave us was about 45 days out.)
Easy To Use Chart
Next, you'll see a chart that defaults to all of your choices for a 30-year fixed mortgage; click on the tabs if you would rather shop for a 20-year or 15-year fixed. Better gives some great advice on their site with respect to ARMs, but they only display fixed mortgages - which is reasonable, considering 98% of borrowers choose them. Be sure to talk with your Better rep if you know you're looking for an adjustable-rate refi or another special loan type like jumbo or FHA.
See It All
Very few lenders show you ALL of the possibilities, from interest rates to points, but Better definitely lets you see it all. It's up to you if it's worth it to pay points for a lower rate - or to get a credit at closing for taking a slightly higher one - but you'll have no problem seeing how it'll affect your monthly payments either way.
No Hidden Fees
When you spot a combination of APR and points (or credits!) you like, click on it (and then the "continue" button) to have it applied to your Loan Estimate page. That serves merely as a placeholder: you can change it any time before you officially lock your rate. Now you'll be able to see your Loan Estimate in the links on the left side of the page. There are no hidden fees or sneaky costs when getting your mortgage refinanced with Better. You can even get started on rounding up all of the documentation to verify your assets and schedule an appraisal (if needed); you'll find your to-do list under the Tasks link.
100% Online Application, And Help When You Need It
While your application will be 100% online, you'll still be able to get personal help if you need it. In fact, after we had finished entering our preliminary information, we got a phone call later that day asking if we had any questions and walking us through Better's process for mortgage refinancing. The representative was patient and knowledgeable, but there was no pressure to lock in our rate.
Set Your Contact Preferences
Don't want to be inundated with calls, texts, or emails? Better lets you specify how you'd prefer to be contacted. Set your preferences in your profile - or, easier yet, wait for the preapproval letter in your email inbox and then use the link there.
No Origination Fees
One of the ways that this lender saves you money is by not charging origination fees. We were also impressed with Better's offer to beat our local broker's best offer - and they were able to offer a total cost to close that was $1,000 less. All we had to do was email the PDF of our Loan Estimate to our Better rep.
Choose Your Title Company
Also, while Better can select a title company for you, you're welcome to shop around and find one that will give you the best package on your refi closing. (For example, if you already have a survey for your property or if you work with the title company that did the original closing on your home, you probably will pay less in fees).
Better enjoys a stellar reputation no matter where you look. Starting with the Better Business Bureau's "A+" rating and accreditation and moving on to the hundreds of 5-star reviews from clients and from experts in the mortgage industry, you'll have a hard time finding anyone with complaints about the experience with this lender.
Backed by such notable partners as American Express and Goldman Sachs, and praised by publications from Forbes to Fortune, Better has what it takes to earn your business for your refi. For low rates, the easiest process, and best overall service, this should be the first site you visit. Better earns our highest recommendation among providers of mortgage refinancing.
While it might be tempting to go with a local mortgage broker or even your community bank, you're not likely to get the lowest rates or ideal terms that way. Why? They usually work with their preferred partners instead of negotiating or "comparison shopping" to get you the best deal. You're paying for convenience and familiarity, but that's it. Fortunately, there are many reputable online lenders that make it quick and easy to get low rates and great terms, all from your laptop or even your mobile phone!
With interest rates at historic lows, it's worth your while to consider mortgage refinancing. Whether you want to shave years off your current mortgage and lower your interest rate or get cash out from your established equity, there's no better time than now. Using an online lender lets you compare rates, complete the application, and finish the entire process without ever leaving home: some services send a mobile notary to you for the final steps of signing the paperwork! Otherwise, you can often choose a local title company if you prefer to go the more traditional route.
Not all online mortgage refinancing providers work the same. While some operate more like a regular bank, funding your loan themselves, others act as a referral service so that you can compare rates and offers from multiple lenders at once. Whichever site you choose, don't be afraid to take the quote you receive and ask other lenders to compete for your business! Some of the fees charged in the refi process are negotiable, so why not see who can give you the absolute best loan terms?
As you start the process of refinancing your mortgage, keep in mind the following criteria for each lender or service you're considering:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best services for mortgage refinancing available today. We hope this information saves you money by helping you find the best rates and terms when you refinance your mortgage!
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