Guaranteed Rate Mortgage Review – Quick Pre-Approvals & Closes

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Best overall

Review of the 2021 guaranteed rate

Review of the 2021 guaranteed rate

Editor’s Note: (4.8 / 5)

Best overall

Review of the 2021 guaranteed rate

Editor’s Note: (4.8 / 5)
  • Minimum credit score:

    580 FHA, Virginia; 620 conventional; 680 giant

  • Minimum deposit:

    0% to 3.5%, depending on the type of loan; 5% giant

  • Can apply online:


  • Works in:

    The 50 states

NextAdvisor’s Take


  • Over 400 branches across the country
  • Works in all 50 states and Washington, DC
  • Fully online mortgage application process
  • Detailed advertised rates for several of its loan products
  • Online pre-approval 15 minutes
  • Quick closures

The inconvenients

  • Lender fees not available online
  • Some types of loans are negotiated with other lenders

The bottom line

Since the Guaranteed Rate creates mortgages in all 50 states, has many loan options, and has a proven track record of providing high quality customer service, this lender is a good option for most borrowers. You can also get a quick quote from the website, which will help you determine if you want to work with the lender.

Editorial independence

As with all of our mortgage lender reviews, our analysis is not influenced by any partnerships or advertising relationships. For more information on our rating methodology, Click here.

Guaranteed rate Full review

The Guaranteed Rate is an online mortgage lender that also offers help in person over the phone and in over 400 offices across the country. The Chicago-based company is a premier lender because it offers solid customer service, a fully online mortgage process, and helpful digital tools for its clients. In addition, the guaranteed rate is the source of loans in all 50 states and Washington, DC. Here’s what else to know about the lender before you apply.

Guaranteed rate: types and products of mortgage loans

The Guaranteed Rate offers all major mortgage programs for borrowers who want to buy a home or refinance a mortgage. On the menu right now:

If you need to borrow more than the compliant limit, the Guaranteed Rate offers jumbo mortgages up to $ 5 million.

* With construction loans, reverse mortgages and home equity products, you can start the application with the guaranteed rate. They will take the request and negotiate it with another lender.

Guaranteed Price: Transparency

The Guaranteed Rate website is easy to use, and visitors can get a personalized quote without providing personal information or accepting a firm credit application. This is important because you will be able to see if the lender is right for you without affecting your credit.

If you decide to take the next step, the Guaranteed Rate says it can provide a pre-approval letter in about 15 minutes online. Those who need more help or have questions can contact a loan officer by phone or at one of the lender’s 400 branches across the United States. and instantly connect with a loan officer via email.

From start to finish, borrowers can complete the mortgage application, upload documents and even sign closing documents online where electronic closings are allowed.

The Guaranteed Rate also has dozens of resources on the mortgage lending process, information on each type of loan, explanations of common mortgage terminology, and calculators to help borrowers estimate their loan costs on their website.

Guaranteed rate: mortgage rate and fees

The Guaranteed Rate advertises daily interest rates for all of the products it offers, such as conventional 30- and 15-year fixed-rate loans, 30-year FHA fixed-rate loans, and fixed-rate VA loans on 30 years. You can also customize the quote based on loan amount, down payment, credit range, and county, then compare options from multiple mortgage programs.

If you later get pre-approved or apply for a mortgage, you’ll receive a detailed list of the fees you’ll pay at closing. We did not receive a sample guaranteed rate fee list, but the following are common with most lenders:

The guaranteed rate does not charge prepayment penalties on the loans it takes out, so you can prepay your mortgage without incurring additional fees. However, some brokerage products have prepayment penalties.

The loan eligibility requirements vary depending on the type of loan you are looking to get. Borrowers need a credit score of at least 620 and a minimum down payment of 3% to be eligible for a conventional loan. The eligibility conditions are more flexible for government sponsored loans because they carry less risk. Borrowers need a credit score of at least 580 and a 3.5% down payment on an FHA loan, while VA loans only require a credit score of 580. Borrowers don’t. however, will not need a down payment with VA loans.

Customers who want to borrow more than the compliant limit can get a jumbo loan with a down payment of at least 5% and a credit score of 680 or higher.

The guaranteed rate indicates that you can lock in a fixed mortgage rate for up to one year in some cases, but fees may apply if you need to extend the rate lock, so it’s best to try and lock in for the appropriate length of time. Closes can vary depending on each mortgage, but the goal of the guaranteed rate is to be clear to close within 10 days.

Guaranteed rate refinancing

Depending on your goals, a mortgage refinance can help you save money with a lower interest rate, borrow money, or switch from an adjustable rate mortgage to a fixed rate loan. The Guaranteed Rate website has a lot of information on the refinancing process, how to decide if it’s the right choice for you, and a list of closing costs borrowers typically pay to refinance.

The lender offers interest rate and term refinances – which allow you to get a new interest rate, a new loan term, or both – and cash refinances, which allow you to borrow money in cash. using your home as collateral. The Guaranteed Rate also has streamlined FHA refinances and VA IRRRL refinances, which allow homeowners to refinance through these programs with less paperwork. And if Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac own your mortgage, you may be able to refinance through the new Refi Possible and RefiNow programs.

Each refinance program has its pros and cons, and you will need to consider whether you will be staying in your home long enough to recoup the closing costs.

Some lenders, including the Guaranteed Rate, also offer free refinancing, which reduces your upfront expenses. The lender waives your initial closing costs, then increases your interest rate or incorporates the closing costs into the principal amount of your loan. Either way, your monthly mortgage payments go up, either as a larger principal balance or as a higher interest rate.

Guaranteed rate compared to other mortgage lenders

Guaranteed rate Motion mortgage loan deposit
Minimum credit score 580 for FHA and VA; 620 for the conventional; 680 for jumbo 580 (some mortgage programs may require a higher score) 620 for conventional loans; 700 for jumbo loans; 580 for FHA loans; 620 for VA loans
Minimum deposit 0% for the VA; 3.5% for FHA; 3% or more for conventional; 5% for large 0% to 3.5% 0% to 5%
Where does the lender operate? All 50 states and Washington, DC All 50 states and Washington, DC All 50 states and Washington, DC
Main types of loans Conventional, Jumbo, VA, FHA, USDA, Home Improvement, Construction, Variable Rate, Fixed Rate, Refinance, Refinance With Withdrawal, Easy Refinance, Home Equity Products Conventional, Jumbo, VA, FHA, USDA, Various Home Improvement Loans, Variable Rate, Fixed Rate, Refinance, Refinance With Withdrawal, Reverse Mortgages Conventional Home Improvement Loan, Jumbo, VA, FHA, FHA 203 (k), Variable Rate, Fixed Rate, Refinance, Cash Refinance

How To Shop For The Best Mortgage Rate

Before you start shopping for a home, contact a lender and apply for mortgage pre-approval. Based on the details of your financial situation, they will help you determine how much you can borrow and put the information in a pre-approval letter. Use this document to budget and visit homes. (Some sellers require a pre-approval letter when accepting offers to buy.)

However, you are not tied to the lender who gave you pre-approval. When you’re ready to get a mortgage, submit applications to multiple mortgage lenders and ask for a loan estimate. This document lists your interest rate, closing costs, and other details about the loan. Comparing costs can help you find the best deal, although you can use a mortgage calculator to figure out how much you can save with a lower interest rate.

Take a look at an example: Let’s say you get two mortgage quotes for a house worth $ 200,000 with a 20% down payment and a 30-year term.

Interest rate Monthly payment of principal and interest Total interest paid over 30 years Registered interest
3.5% $ 718 $ 98,780
3.0% $ 674 $ 82,970 $ 44 per month or $ 15,840 over the term of the loan

With an interest rate of 3.5%, the monthly principal and interest payment is $ 718. But with an interest rate of 3.0%, you save $ 44 per month on interest charges, or $ 15,840 over 30 years.

Editorial independence

As with all of our mortgage lender reviews, our analysis is not influenced by any partnerships or advertising relationships. For more information on our rating methodology, Click here.


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