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Picking the right lender in Minnesota can involve a lot of research, whether you're looking in the twin cities of Minneapolis-St. Paul or a small town like St. Cloud. Most mortgage loans take decades to repay, which can mean the difference of thousands of dollars when it comes to minor differences in rates. That makes it important to compare rates and shop across multiple lenders. To help speed up the process, we've reviewed some of the top mortgage lenders in Minnesota. Read more about our picks below or obtain a personalized rate quote using the quotebox above.
The Best Mortgage Rates Among Minnesota Lenders
If you're trying to get prequalified for a home loan in Minnesota, take a look at our mortgage lenders below, who offer market-driven quotes from some of the most competitive mortgage lenders in the state. Rates alone won't capture all the factors that impact your borrowing experience. Remember to consider each lender's reputation for customer service, terms and closing costs. We've reviewed our top picks below to help inform your shopping experience. Read on to find the right lender for you.
Best Mortgage Lender for First-Time Homebuyers: U.S. Bank
First-time homebuyers looking for in-person guidance should obtain a quote from U.S. Bank. At 142 branches scattered throughout the state, U.S. Bank has the second largest bank network in Minnesota. This means that borrowers will likely have access to a U.S. Bank branch near them, regardless of whether they live in Rochester or Shakopee. U.S. Bank is both the second largest mortgage originator and refinancer in the state, by volume. Over the past five years, they underwrote over 66,000 residential mortgage loans in Minnesota alone.
U.S. Bank is an approved Minnesota Housing Finance Agency lender, which allows it to offer down payment loans at interest rates equal to your mortgage rate, as well as reduced PMI requirements. U.S. Bank also beat industry-mortgage behemoth Wells Fargo handily in the customer service department, making it an excellent all-around option for borrowers new to homebuying.
Best Mortgage Lender for Refinancing: Quicken Loans
Homeowners looking to refinance should take a look at Quicken Loans, which has quickly grown to become one of the most popular lenders in Minnesota. Over the past five years, Quicken Loans refinanced over 17,900 mortgages, making it the third largest refinancer in the state by volume. Quicken Loans is growing rapidly in popularity across Minnesota, as the lender holds the fastest growth rate in refinancing volume among Minnesota's top five mortgage lenders at 23% year-over-year. By contrast, established competitors like Wells Fargo and U.S. Bank only increased by 11% and 9%, respectively.
While Quicken's mortgage rates aren't spectacular, where the lender shines are its streamlined approval process and unparalleled track record for customer service. Quicken Loans was ranked highest in customer satisfaction by J.D. Power for eight consecutive years. The lender also offers a unique YOURgage product, which lets borrowers structure mortgages into any term they wish, inside of 29 years, providing unparalleled flexibility for both refinancings and primary mortgages alike.
Best Online Mortgage Lender: Guaranteed Rate
Guaranteed Rate stands out among online lenders, thanks to its exceptional record for customer service, competitive rates and intuitive web interface. Guaranteed Rate offers a wide array of popular mortgage products, including fixed-rate, adjustable-rate, jumbo loans, FHA- and VA-sponsored home loans, as well as interest-only mortgages. Guaranteed Rate offers competitive terms across each product and performs admirably when it comes to transparency and customer service.
Guaranteed Rate achieved high ratings from J.D. Power for customer satisfaction, ranking higher than industry leaders Wells Fargo, Bank of America and Chase. According to data from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the online lender received fewer consumer complaints than any of the major brick-and-mortar lenders, making it one of the most reliable shops around. Finally, loan officers from Guaranteed Rate handle the entire mortgage process via phone and email, which means that borrowers across Minnesota can rest assured that they'll have access to the same quality of customer service regardless of whether they live in Mankato or Duluth.
Best Mortgage Lender for VA Loans: Navy Federal Credit Union
We selected Navy Federal Credit Union as our top VA loan lender, thanks to its useful online resources and bottom-dollar VA loan rates. Qualifying veterans and servicemembers alike can get up to 100% of their mortgage loans financed through the VA loan program, negating the need for any down payment. If you’re a current or former member of any branch of the U.S. military, it’s worth signing up for a Navy Federal membership to take advantage of their wide selection of lucrative financial products.
Navy Federal offers access to its unique network of real estate agents who specialize in finding homes for those affiliated with the military. Participation in the lender's RealtyPlus Program qualifies the borrower for up to $5,050 in cash back, depending on the cost of your home purchase. This makes them an attractive value for military personnel stationed in the Minneapolis-St. Paul Joint Air Reserve Station. If you have any doubts about whether you're getting the best deal with Navy Federal, you can rest assured, as the Navy Federal promises to match its best competitors’ offers or it will deposit $1,000 into your bank account after closing.
Best Mortgage Lender for Poor Credit: Bell Bank
Borrowers with poor credit should consider applying for an FHA-sponsored mortgage with Bell Bank. FHA loans are sponsored by the Federal Housing Agency and provide reduced down payment requirements as well as lower credit hurdles than conventional mortgages. Bell Bank was the No. 1 FHA lender in the state of Minnesota and originated almost double the number of FHA loans as its closest competitor. It also topped the list of FHA lenders in no less than nine counties across Minnesota.
Bell Bank maintains a hyperlocal focus and is another approved lender under the Minnesota Housing homebuyer assistance program. This means that qualifying homebuyers can obtain down payment and closing cost loans of up to $15,000. Given that Best Bank is a regional bank and focuses primarily on lending and banking operations in the Upper Midwest, its loan officers are well-equipped to help low-income homebuyers in Minnesota qualify for affordable housing initiatives.
How We Chose the Best Mortgage Lenders in Minnesota
We used the following criteria while comparing mortgage lenders.
- Total cost: interest rates and closing costs
- Product: terms, programs and specialty
- Servicing: transparency, complaint data and branch network
While interest rates played an important role in our decision, we also reviewed each lender's unique terms and fees. Lenders were analyzed on the basis of total cost instead of interest rates alone.
We highlighted any competitive advantages that a lender exhibited that weren't common to the industry. For example, most lenders offer conventional fixed-rate mortgages, but fewer specialize in niche programs like FHA, VA, USDA or first-time homebuyer loans. Certain lenders were better able to distinguish themselves with special financing programs than others.
We examined customer service records and complaint data to try to forecast the likelihood of issues arising during either the underwriting or mortgage servicing process. Each lender's number of customer service complaints were totaled and divided against the number of loans closed over the past five years. The resulting ratios were then sorted and ranked by magnitude.
Finally, we mapped and compared the size of each lender's branch network. This assessed whether borrowers in less-populated regions of Minnesota would have access to comparable levels of service as borrowers in more populated regions like Minneapolis-St. Paul. Each lender was evaluated according to its level of accessibility.
Most Popular Home Loan Companies in Minnesota
Listed below are the top five most popular mortgage lenders in Minnesota based on loan origination volume. These are ranked in order of total number of residential mortgages originated over the past five years.
Top 5 Biggest Minnesota Residential Mortgage Lenders, 2013–2019
|Rank||Company||Mortgage originations||Average mortgage amount|
|3||Bell Bank (State Bankshares)||42,864||$206,883|
|5||Amec Home Loans (American Mortgage & Equity Consultants)||19,859||$213,100|
The lenders above originated the most mortgages in the five-year period between 2013 and 2018. If you're shopping for a home loan in Minnesota, you may find it useful to use these lenders as a point of comparison. The most popular lenders in Minnesota may not have been included among our top picks, as mortgage lenders were evaluated holistically and not solely on the basis of rates or popularity.
It's important to review each lender by comparing its records for customer service, closing costs and unique offerings in addition to standard rates and terms. There might also be other factors that matter to you that were not covered in our review. Make sure you evaluate your options based on your own unique situation.
Mortgage Brokers Near Me in Minnesota
A licensed mortgage broker can save you both time and money when it comes to shopping for home loans. They can compare home loans from multiple lenders simultaneously using a single loan application and act as agents on your behalf during the mortgage shopping process.
Listed below are a number of licensed mortgage brokers in your area.
|Edge Home Finance Corporation||4510 W 77th St #380, Edina, MN 55435||(763) 219-8484|
|Flashpoint Mortgage Corp.||8120 Penn Ave S #100p, Bloomington, MN 55431||(952) 777-2250|
|Heartland Home Loans||13433 Fenway Blvd Ct N, Hugo, MN 55038||(651) 653-9191|
|Loan Factory Inc||3015 85th Ave N, Brooklyn Park, MN 55444||(612) 666-6000|
|Minnesota Residential Mortgage, Inc.||215 S 4th St #210, Minneapolis, MN 55401||(612) 746-5000|
|Principle Mortgage Group, Inc.||1135 Washington Ave # 100, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501||(218) 844-7466|
|Team USA Mortgage||602 1st St E, Park Rapids, MN 56470||(218) 237-5128|
|Mortgages Unlimited||33 Wentworth Ave E #290, St Paul, MN 55118||(651) 552-3681|
|Antler Home Mortgage LLC||9490 Cottontail Dr, Minnetrista, MN 55375||(952) 484-9521|
|Hancock Mortgage Partners||230 W Superior St suite 400, Duluth, MN 55802||(218) 216-1377|