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Guaranteed Rate Mortgage Review

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We maintain strict editorial integrity in our writing and assessments. This post contains links from our advertisers, and we may receive compensation when you click these links. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone. | Advertiser Disclosure
We maintain strict editorial integrity in our writing and assessments. This post contains links from our advertisers, and we may receive compensation when you click these links. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone. | Advertiser Disclosure
Guaranteed Rate

Guaranteed Rate is a residential mortgage company based in Chicago, Illinois. The firm has 400 offices spread around the country, and it originates mortgages in all 50 states and D.C. There are more than 10,000 employees who work at the firm. Loan options include 30- and 15-year fixed-rate mortgages, 5-, 7- and 10-year adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs), jumbo loans, FHA loans, VA home loans and interest-only mortgages.

Guaranteed Rate was named a top private U.S. job creator by Inc. Magazine and was named the top lender by Chicago Agent Magazine from 2016-2020.

Today's Rates

National Average Rates

Product Today Last Week Change
30 year fixed 5.21% 5.13% +0.08
15 year fixed 4.39% 4.32% +0.07
5/1 ARM 4.78% 4.69% +0.10
30 yr fixed mtg refi 5.29% 5.22% +0.07
15 yr fixed mtg refi 4.40% 4.31% +0.09
7/1 ARM refi 4.85% 4.82% +0.03
15 yr jumbo fixed mtg refi 3.06% 3.10% -0.04

National Mortgage Rates

Source: Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey, SmartAsset Research

Regions Served by Guaranteed Rate

Does Guaranteed Rate Operate in My Area?

Guaranteed Rate is licensed to originate loans in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.

That said, the company doesn't have offices in every state. Guaranteed Rate has branches in the following states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

What Kind of Mortgage Can I Get With Guaranteed Rate?

Fixed-rate mortgage: A fixed-rate mortgage is the old-reliable of the home loan industry, and by far the most common and popular among homebuyers. You are lent money for your home at a fixed interest rate across the entire life of the loan. At Guaranteed Rate, you can get a 30-year or 15-year fixed-rate mortgage, depending on which terms fit better with your plans.

Adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM): An adjustable rate mortgage, often called an ARM, has a very different way of determining interest. There is a specific term at the front of the loan that features a fixed-rate. After that, the rate is updated on an annual basis until the loan is paid off, generally in 30 years. At Guaranteed Rate, the fixed-rate period is available for 5, 7 or 10 years.

Jumbo loans: As the name denotes, a jumbo loan is for mortgages that are bigger than the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) mortgage cap, set at $647,200 for most places in 2022. Jumbo loans are available in both fixed- and adjustable-rate variations. A jumbo loan will come with even more security than a normal mortgage.

FHA Loans: FHA loans are offered in conjunction with the Federal Housing Administration. They allow borrowers to put up a down payment as low as 3%, while also accepting borrowers with less-than-stellar credit. More specifically, those with a score as low as 580 can get approved. These are available at a fixed-rate for 15- or 30-year terms.

VA loan: VA loans are backed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. They are designed to help current and former members of the military buy a home with no down payments and low interest rates. Guaranteed Rate offers these loans at a fixed rate for a 30-year term.

Interest-only mortgage: An interest-only mortgage is a loan where, for a set amount of time - perhaps five years - payments are made only on the interest, without the principal. After that set time, the principal is added back in. This allows you to make smaller payments in the short-term, but ultimately results in higher total costs.

What Can You Do Online With Guaranteed Rate?

Guaranteed Rate offers a mortgage calculator you can use to get a sense of your payments. This tool can be used right when your getting started or once you’ve been approved and are getting ready to actually purchase your home.

If you’re ready to apply for a loan, you can get stared on Guaranteed Rate’s website. You’ll need to enter a plethora of information, including your bank accounts, employment history, credit score and Social Security number. There is also a contact-free closing platform calle FlashClose, allowing you to e-sign all documents and complete the entire closing process from your current home.

Guaranteed Rate also as a mobile app where you can connect with a loan officer, see mortgage rates and compare costs.

Would You Qualify for a Mortgage From Guaranteed Rate?

Guaranteed Rate generally requires a credit score of at least 620 to qualify for a mortgage. That said, government-backed loans like VA or FHA loans may have their own separate requirements.

Guaranteed Rate does not list a minimum down payment, but notes that the average down payment for a mortgage in the U.S. is 6%. Government-backed loans will have different minimums, and VA loans can frequently be had with no down payment at all. However, any loans with less than a 20% down payment will come with extra private mortgage insurance (PMI) payments until you reach the 20% mark.

What’s the Process for Getting a Mortgage with Guaranteed Rate?

The first thing you’ll want to do when you start looking for homes is get a preapproval letter from your lender. You can do this by going through the application process on Guaranteed Rate’s app or website. After your mortgage is preapproved, you can contact a loan officer for a letter stating your preapproval. This letter will make you a much stronger buyer on the market and could help you land your home faster.

Now you can shop for your home. When you find one you like, you’ll get an inspection and appraisal. If all goes well there, you will apply to have your loan underwritten and get final approval. If that goes through, you’ll close on your loan and get your keys. It's at this point that you'll start making monthly mortgage payments.

How Guaranteed Rate Stacks Up

Guaranteed Rate offers most of the same types of mortgages other lenders offer. It doesn’t have USDA loans, which are designed to get Americans to move to more rural partes of the country, but it still offers all other common types of mortgages.

Guaranteed Rate’s online tools are fairly par for the course. If you’re a digital-first person, you’ll be able to use the website and app to apply for your loan, saving you the hassle of having to make a trip to a brick-and-mortar location.

Tips for Managing Your Mortgage

  • Buying a home is a big financial decision, and it can’t hurt to get help from a professional to see how it fits into your plan. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors in your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
  • Use SmartAsset’s closing costs calculator to see what you may have to pay to finish out your homebuying journey.
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