Arvest Mortgage Review: Pros, Cons, Rates, What to Expect

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arvest central mortgage logo with website link underneath

Deciding on a mortgage provider can be a daunting task for even experienced home buyers. There are a variety of factors to consider like the types of loans they offer, the servicing area of the company, and its financial strength. The purpose of this article is to offer you some background information about Arvest Mortgage and to review their services.

Arvest Mortgage – Details and Overview

Being a wholly owned subsidiary of Arvest Bank exceeding $15 billion in total assets, Arvest Mortgage participates in a wide variety of loan program types. The company is an approved lender for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Ginnie Mae, HUD, and VA loans.

The mortgage portion of the company has been in business since April of 1997. They have maintained their Better Business Bureau accreditation since May of 2007 and currently have an A+ rating with them.

As far as physical branches go, Arvest Mortgage currently has branch locations in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. While their branch locations are indeed limited, Arvest Mortgage does lend in all 50 states as long as people use their online mortgage tools.

Arvest Mortgage Loan Process Explained

Decide on Your Loan Type

One of the best things about Arvest Mortgage is the wide selection of loan programs that they offer. FHA loans are a very popular option to consider. These loans offer one of the lowest down payment amounts and very flexible credit terms. This type of loan is primarily designed for first time home buyers. There are several very important points to consider.

While the minimum down payment amount for these loans can be as low as 3.5 percent, you will be expected to pay monthly private mortgage insurance. This fee is accessed due to the high loan to value ratio of these types of loans. It can be canceled once your loan amount drops to 80 percent of the current value of the home. In addition to PMI, you will also be assessed an upfront fee equal to 1.5 percent of the loan.

Another popular loan program that Arvest Mortgage participates in is VA loans. These loans are designed for military personnel and their immediate family members. Like FHA loans, they offer more flexible credit requirements. These loans have the added benefit of 100 percent financing and no PMI requirement. Instead of PMI, these loans are assessing an initial funding fee. The exact amount of the fee will vary based on several factors like the intention of the home purchase and the down payment amount.

Rural housing loans are another mortgage type that Arvest Mortgage offers. Also known as USDA loans, these mortgages are designed to encourage growth in smaller communities. They have flexible credit requirements and are another great alternative for borrowers who want 100 percent financing. Like VA loans, they have an initial funding fee that replaces the PMI that is seen in other loan types.

Understanding Term Length, Fixed Rate Mortgages, ARMs

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The majority of the loan programs discussed above come in both fixed and ARM types. Fixed rate mortgages are an ideal choice for borrowers who value stability. They are much easier to budget for in the long-term, and the payments stay more or less the same. The only changes you may see will likely be related to your escrow payment for things like taxes and insurance.

ARMs, also known as adjustable rate mortgages, are designed to offer lower interest rates in the beginning. This allows borrowers to buy homes larger than they typically could afford due to the decreased payment amount. After the initial fixed-rate period, the interest rate changes based on a major index. In periods where rates are likely to fall in the future, these loan types can save owners from the hassle of refinancing to take advantage of lower interest rates.

However, the opposite can happen with ARM types. In the event of rapid interest rate increases, borrowers can find themselves with mortgages that they cannot afford. This is why it is very important to consider the pros and cons of selecting an ARM during the mortgage process.

In addition to understanding the differences between fixed and adjustable rate mortgages, term length is another important detail. Most loans come in 15, 20, and 30-year terms. The longer the term, the higher you can expect your interest rate to be. For example, the current going rate for a conforming 30-year loan is approximately four percent while a 15-year loan has a rate of 3.625 percent.

Preparing for Your Prequalification and Beyond

Now that you know about the basic loan program types and important factors like term length, you’re ready for the prequalification. To get started, you can apply online using their Arvest convenient form. You will need to create an account to finish your initial application.

You will need a variety of important financial documents to complete this process. Go ahead and gather your income documentation from the prior month first. This should include things like your paycheck stubs, cash receipts, and invoices. You should also print out a copy of your bank statement for your checking and savings accounts. It also helps if you have a copy of your prior year tax returns as well.

Your assigned mortgage broker will review all of your basic information and give you an initial estimate of the house you can afford. Using your prequalification letter, work with your real estate agent to find properties that are in your price range. Once you find a property you are interested in, you’re ready to move into the more advanced stages of underwriting.

You will start by making an offer on the home. If the seller accepts, there will be additional steps like a home inspection and an appraisal. This is also the part where the mortgage company will ask for fresh financial documents from you and seek to verify your employment.

They will also pull an updated credit report to make sure you still qualify for your preferred loan program. If all goes well and the house meets the loan program requirements, you should close on your property in one or two weeks. After closing, you can manage your account from the Arvest Mortgage company website to set up recurring payments and view your account balance.

PROs and CONs of Arvest Mortgage

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Pros

  • Lending options available in all 50 states.
  • Online account access for new and existing customers.
  • Competitive rates.
  • Multiple loan program types.

Cons

  • Outdated website design.
  • Physical locations are limited to four states.

Arvest Mortgage Customer Service Review

Arvest Mortgage maintains a positive rating with the Better Business Bureau and works to resolve its customer concerns in a timely manner. Their customer service team is readily available to answer a wide range of questions relating to your mortgage account.

As far as availability goes, their customer service can be reached from 7 AM to 8 PM central standard time. They also have limited weekend availability from 8 AM to 2 PM on Saturdays as well.

Contact Information

Final Word

All in all, Arvest Mortgage is an excellent company to consider. They offer a wide range of mortgage solutions and work with customers all across the United States. They also maintain a positive rating with the Better Business Bureau. If you’ve had first-hand experience with Arvest Mortgage, feel free to tell us about it in the comments section.

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