Embarking on the home buying process for the first time can be a thrilling and overwhelming experience. The main purpose of this article will be to answer questions about Freedom Mortgage Corporation – what it is, how it does business, and most importantly, how it can potentially help you buy a new home.
Freedom Mortgage is a full-service lending company that offers home mortgage and refinancing services. They emphasize their knowledge and proficiency in handling Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and Veterans Administration (VA) loans. As a full-service lender, they guide clients through every step of the loan process.
Freedom Mortgage – Details and Overview
Founded in 1990 by Stanley Middleman, Freedom Mortgage Corporation of Mt. Laurel, New Jersey, is a privately held lending company that is licensed in all 50 states as well as in Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. They offer both conventional (for well-qualified borrowers) and non-conventional (for those with limited funds and/or low credit rating) loans, refinancing services, and are well versed in FHA and VA residential loan programs. A widely cited provider of industry information and analysis, Inside Mortgage Finance Publications called them one of the top mortgage companies in the country in 2015.
Freedom Mortgage Loan Process Explained
Freedom Mortgage offers both conventional and non-conventional loans.
Under their conventional loan program, they offer both fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs). The benefit of the fixed-rate option is that your interest rate is locked in for the duration of the loan’s term, either 15 or 30 years. Your monthly payments will never change. With an ARM, however, the interest rate is tied to an index, and though the rate will typically start out lower than for the fixed-rate option, after a period of one to seven years it will reset and your monthly payments will increase in sync with the index.
Many first-time home buyers take advantage of a non-conventional loan. As stated above, Freedom Mortgage emphasizes its expertise in offering non-conventional FHA and VA-backed loans. An FHA-backed loan is made for borrowers with exact funds to put towards a down payment and who have had issues with their credit history and rating. If you take advantage of an FHA-backed loan, you will have to pay a monthly insurance premium on top of your mortgage payments. The VA home-buying program, which is available to current or former military service members and their eligible spouses, requires no down payment or private mortgage insurance premiums, but certain credit and income standards must stand.
Example of the Freedom Mortgage Process
To show you some ball-park figures, Freedom Mortgage’s website offers an Affordability Calculator, where you can enter a few basic items and get an idea of what kind of loan you can afford. For this, you should have at hand some basic information, such as your monthly income, credit rating, the amount you pay each month on all of your debt, and how much you think you can spend on a down payment. If you think you’re ready, then simply contact a representative to begin the process of getting pre-qualified.
PROS and CONS of Freedom Mortgage
- Specializes in providing FHA and VA-backed loans.
Freedom Mortgage is knowledgeable and experienced in providing FHA and VA-backed loans, which make owning a home much more viable for veterans and others with lower incomes and a FICO score below 680. As for the VA, if you meet certain income, credit rating and other criteria, the VA will back a part of the loan, which gives you more favorable terms.
- Provides convenient and comprehensive service.
Freedom Mortgage is a full-service lending company. Loan officers are professional and seek to guide clients to lending solutions based on your own unique situation.
- They operate in all 50 states plus D.C., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
- The Better Business Bureau gave Freedom Mortgage an A- rating.
- Two branches appeared on HUD’s “Credit Watch Terminated Lender List” in 2010.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development placed two Freedom Mortgage branches (one in New Jersey and the other in Indiana) on this list in 2010, and either their “underwriting” or “origination” authority was suspended. HUD will do this usually when a branch’s default rate is 200% larger as compared to other lenders in the local area.
- Online user reviews are mixed.
The online comments section of several websites, from lendingtree.com to the Better Business Bureau, often mention Freedom Mortgage’s customer service. There was praise from some and frustrations from others.
Freedom Mortgage Customer Service Review
According to lendingtree.com, only 46% of users would recommend using this company. They had an average score under each of the following categories:
- interest rates;
- fees and closing costs;
- customer service;
However, there was much praise as well. A sampling of some of the reviews:
A few users had issues with the company asking over the phone two or three times for the same information. Others had similarly unhelpful phone conversations, such as Geejoo from California, who said his account manager “was quite brusque”.
On the positive side, there were quite a number of reviews that gave high marks for Freedom Mortgage’s overall service. Several who acquired a VA-backed loan through the company had positive experiences, such as Eliseo from Leesville, LA, who called their Freedom Mortgage team “fast, effective and efficient.”
Here you will find out how to contact Freedom Mortgage or find out more about them.
In summary, the questions you may have had about Freedom Mortgage, what they do and what they can offer you, have hopefully been answered. Freedom Mortgage is a quality lender. Thus, they may deserve your attention. Still – in what could be one of the biggest decisions of your life, always be your own advocate.
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