Quicken Loans Mortgage Review 2018
Quicken Loans Inc. is the largest home mortgage lender in the United States by volume. Headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, the company closed $400 Billion in mortgage loans from 2013 through 2017. It is listed by JD Power & Associates as one of the two top lenders for 2017, in its customer satisfaction survey, for both loan origination and loan servicing.
Quicken Loans is not a bank and therefore doesn’t have to depend on deposits to make funds available for its loans. Quicken Loans does not have a branch system – all loans are originated and funded online. Quicken Loans and its family of companies achieved its volume milestone through the efforts of its 24,000 full-time employees, 17,000 of which are located in Detroit.
The company has been the recipient of many industry awards and recognitions, including for its IT prowess and for being a great place to work.
Quicken Loans Inc. is a privately held company, a brand of Intuit, the well-known developer of tax and accounting software. Its motto is “Obsessed with Finding a Better Way – For Our Clients, for our Communities, and for Our Team Members.”
- Simple, friendly app
- Customer service
- “Rate Shield Approval” unique plan
- No retail branches
- “Over techi” approach
- Not have a lot of options for bad credit borrowers
Quicken Loans Overview
Quicken Loans Inc. was founded in 1985, as Rock Mortgage and was renamed Rock Financial Corp. in 1987. In 1988, the founders took the company public. In 1999, Intuit Inc., makers of Quicken, Quickbooks and TurboTax accounting and tax software, purchased the company and folded it into its Quicken Mortgage division.
In 2002, the founders and a group of investors re-purchased the company. While the company had already begun to evolve away from the traditional mortgage lender mode to doing loans online, the re-purchase accelerated that change in trajectory.
In 2007, the company consolidated most of its operations in downtown Detroit and in 2008, the company purchased One Reverse Mortgage, headquartered in San Diego, and entered the reverse mortgage market.
Like all mortgage lenders, the financial crisis of 2008 and onward, Quicken Loans retrenched and ceased originating certain types of loans (2nd mortgages, Home Equity Lines of Credit, deferred interest loans, etc.), but kept its focus on the online origination of traditional mortgage products.
In 2016, the company unveiled Rocket Mortgage, a truly online lender. The technology utilized allows it to verify employment and income, bank balances and obtain credit directly from the sources of that information, so that consumers do not have to provide those documents in paper form. This can greatly streamline the process, dramatically speeding it up and eliminating roadblocks, which improves customer satisfaction.
The Quicken Loans business model is one that is entirely online and, to the extent the customer wishes, mobile, through Quicken Loan’s Rocket Mortgage mobile app. There are no Loan Officers and no branch production offices. Quicken Loan’s motto is that they are “Obsessed With Finding a Better Way – For Our Clients, for Our Community, and For Our Team Members”.
The “Better Way” for the clients includes offering the right mortgage for them, making the status of their loan available 24/7 and by saving them time by using state of the art technology. While there are no branches or loan officers, each borrower is assisted by Quicken Loans’ inside customer service reps.
In addition to stepping up the technology game, Quicken Loans offers what they call “Rate Shield Approval”, which allows a client to lock the interest rate for up to 90 days, even if they have not yet identified a property to purchase. Quicken further promises that if the interest rate rises, the rate will not go up, but if the rate falls during the process, they will reduce the rate.
The borrowers obtain their underwriter approval as part of the Rate Shield Approval, so that they can make an offer that is perceived by a seller as the same as cash. This affords Quicken Loans a distinct competitive advantage, especially in tight real estate markets.
Quicken Loans retains the ownership and servicing rights to nearly 100% of their loans, so for the life of the loan, the borrower will deal exclusively with Quicken Loans.
Quicken Loans Mortgage Process
Quicken Loans strives to make the process be as stress-free as possible. Today’s technology makes this possible. Quicken Loans provides the technology, borrower education and customer service to make that happen and that is how Quicken Loans has become the highest volume lender in the country, with the highest ratings for mortgage originations by JD Power & Associates.
The mortgage process is as follows:
1. Apply for the loan
Borrowers apply online (or by mobile app) with Rocket Mortgage or by talking to a Home Loan Expert on the phone. Chat is also available. Credit is checked and mortgage solutions and rates are provided. The borrower can import all financial information – pay information, bank statements and other data electronically or, as applicable, Quicken Loans can gather the information automatically from the sources. The loan is assigned to a Quicken Loans Home Loan Expert for follow-up.
2. Explore Options
Online calculators (Refinance, Purchase, Home Affordability and Amortization) and the assigned Home Loan Expert help borrowers choose the best home loan option. Comparisons of the costs, rates and benefits are made available so that borrowers can understand the long-term costs of the financing they choose.
The borrower has the ability to customize their mortgage – for example, if he or she plans to obtain a fixed rate loan, they are not locked into the stand 15 or 30-year term but can choose a term from 8 to 29 years. Quicken Loans calls this their “YourGage” program.
3. Verification of the Borrower’s Information
Information about income, assets and credit is verified throughout the process. The borrower sends information online and can communicate regularly with their Home Loan Expert, including after hours. The borrower is regularly provided with real-time updates.
4. The loan closes
Again, flexibility is a hallmark of the Quicken Loans process. Borrowers can close the loan on their terms – when and where they wish. They receive their documents and details before signing and schedule the closing online.
5.Managing the loan after closing
Quicken Loans offers low-or-no-cost options that the borrower can use to pay their mortgage – they can pay on a one-time basis, through automatic payments directly from their checking account and may even make bi-weekly payments without doing so through a third-party.
One of the common problems relating to the servicing of the loan after closed is making sure that the insurance and tax information is up-to-date. Quicken Loan’s system allows easy access to insurance and tax information, so the borrower can manage this important function.
Quicken Loans Products, Pros & Cons
Quicken Loans offers all the standard mortgage programs – not trying to be all things to all people. However, they had added their own twist to the programs they offer – such as the “YourGage”
Following are the main loan programs offered:
- 30 year, Fixed Rate mortgage – is the most popular loan type, due to its low payment that doesn’t change until it is paid off.
- 15 year, Fixed Rate mortgage – allows a lower rate and the ability to pay far less interest over the life of the loan.
- 5/1 and 7/1 Adjustable Rate mortgages – these offer the lowest interest rates for the initial fixed-rate period (five or seven years), allowing the borrower to maximize their monthly cash flow or afford a more expensive home.
- Jumbo Loans – fixed rate and adjustable rate mortgages are available for loan amounts over $453,100 and up to $3 million.
- YourGage – the unique mortgage that allows a mortgage to be custom-tailored to the term desired by the borrower.
- Fixed and Adjustable Rate, government insured or guaranteed loans, which allow lower interest rates and smaller down payments than most conventional loan programs. These include FHA, VA, USDA, FHA and VA Streamline loans.
- Reverse Mortgages – this is a type of loan that is growing in popularity among the aging population, because they allow to obtain a mortgage that allows them to live in their home and make no mortgage payment by utilizing their built-up equity. In some cases, a reverse mortgage may even provide an income to the borrower.
Quicken Loans has proven itself through its sheer volume over the past eight years. The company has been #1 in loan origination volume during that time. This speaks to its company culture and its superior technology. Its loan program mix lends itself to high volume, because it allows the company to focus on the types of loans it does well, while also allowing it to offer unique programs, such as the “YourGage” and the Rate Shield Approval. Additionally:
- Simple, friendly app – Application and the process are made simple through their Rocket Mortgage online app.
- Customer service – A Home Loan Team is always available when human help is needed.
- “Rate Shield Approval” – The “Rate Shield Approval is an innovation that allows Quicken Loans a competitive advantage and puts it ahead of the rest of the industry, giving borrowers a competitive advantage in making offers, especially important in markets where inventory is tight.
- There are no retail branches – While this saves on overhead, it could result in less than maximum market penetration, since some borrowers still prefer a local, retail presence.
- “Over techi” approach – Likewise, a technology-intensive process such as Quicken Loan’s can result in a loss of business because there is still a segment of the population that is not technologically capable or who don’t want their information transmitted online.
- Bad Credit options – if you have low credit scores or unverifiable income, Quicken Loans is probably not where you would go for your financing.
Should You Consider Quicken Loans Mortgage?
Quicken Loans is a major nationwide lender with a variety of loan options that can meet almost any customer’s needs. Quicken Loans has an abundant and robust online presence. You apply from your phone, your iPad, any mobile device, as well as your computer and conduct the entire process online. There are many calculators and resources to help any borrower on their web site.
Quicken Loans does not have to boast about its Customer Service ratings (usually obtained by internal polling of customers) – it is a widely respected company by both consumers and major and minor ratings agencies (BBB.com, JD Powers & Associates, ConsumerAdvocate.org, etc.). Negative ratings can be found, but they are in the minority.
Quicken Loans is best suited for the borrower who embraces technology, who meets reasonable standards for credit score (620 – 740), and can qualify based on their income and ability to demonstrate down payment and reserve requirements for Quicken Loans’ programs. If you have low credit scores or unverifiable income, Quicken Loans is probably not where you would go for your financing. Otherwise, they are the industry gold standard.