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Wells Fargo is one of the nation’s biggest retail banks. It offers a wide range of home loans, making it a good choice for homebuyers with different needs. Plus, with 7,800 locations in the U.S., borrowers have the option to meet with a loan officer face-to-face.
Read this Wells Fargo mortgage review for more information about home loans and the level of service the company provides.
- Wells Fargo mortgage review
- Wells Fargo mortgage process
- Wells Fargo mortgage products
- How Wells Fargo shines
- Compare other lenders
Wells Fargo mortgage review
- You like the option of meeting with a loan officer face-to-face
- You’re looking for a jumbo loan
|Mortgage programs||Conventional, jumbo, FHA, VA, USDA, HELOC
|Fixed-rate loan terms||15-, 20-, and 30-year|
|Variable-rate loan terms||5/1, 7/1, and 10/1 ARM|
|Minimum FICO credit score||580 FICO for FHA loans|
|Minimum down payment||• 3% conventional
• 3.5% FHA
• 0% VA
• 0% USDA
In the past, Wells Fargo practiced improper sales tactics (like signing customers up for products and services they didn’t request), however, the company now says it’s committed to proving itself trustworthy and making things right for its customers.
Wells Fargo mortgage process
As is sometimes the case with traditional banks, it used to be you couldn’t apply for a Wells Fargo mortgage online. That changed in 2018 when Wells Fargo launched a streamlined online application.
If you’re already a Wells Fargo customer, the online application can prepopulate much of the required information, cutting down the time needed to apply for and close a mortgage. Of course, you can still get the ball rolling by walking into a Wells Fargo branch office or picking up the phone to speak to a loan officer, too, if you prefer.
Once your application is in progress, you can check where you are in the process from your computer or smart device using yourLoanTracker. You’ll have the option to sign and upload any required documents and review disclosures online.
After you’re preapproved, Wells Fargo says you can expect closing to take place within the rate-lock period you’ve selected, which can be anywhere from 30 to 90 days.
Wells Fargo mortgage products
Whether you’re looking for a conforming loan that meets Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s underwriting standards, a jumbo loan, or government-backed FHA, VA and USDA loans, Wells Fargo offers plenty of choices at competitive rates.
Conforming mortgages that meet Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s loan limits can be a good choice for homebuyers who are looking for a traditional loan with competitive rates. In most markets, Fannie and Freddie’s 2019 conforming loan limit is $484,350, although you might be able to get a conforming mortgage of up to $726,525 in high-cost markets.
If you’re making a down payment of less than 20% on a conventional, conforming loan, you’ll typically be required to take out private mortgage insurance.
If you need a mortgage that exceeds Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s conforming loan limits, Wells Fargo offers jumbo loans for homebuyers and refinancing your existing home.
Wells Fargo’s Private Mortgage Banking division offers “relationship-based pricing” that includes special interest rate discounts on jumbo loans for eligible customers.
Qualifying borrowers purchasing a home with a jumbo loan of up to $1.5 million can make a down payment of as little as 10.01% without having to pay for mortgage insurance.
Wells Fargo also offers a loan that’s tailored for first-time homebuyers called yourFirst Mortgage. This loan allows for a down payment of as little as 3%. You can use gift funds and down payment assistance programs to help cover your closing costs.
Wells Fargo’s yourFirst Mortgage is not limited to first-time homebuyers, but private mortgage insurance is required.
FHA, VA, and USDA options
Other options for homebuyers who don’t have a lot saved up for a down payment are FHA, VA, and USDA loans. Wells Fargo offers fixed- and adjustable-rate FHA loans with down payments of as little as 3.5%. FHA mortgage insurance premiums are an additional cost, and rates might be higher than those offered by private mortgage insurers. VA and USDA loans also involve fees that can make these costlier options than conventional loans.
Wells Fargo offers many options for refinancing an existing conventional, jumbo, FHA or VA mortgage, including fixed- and adjustable-rate loans. Cash-out refinancing is also available if you’re interested in tapping the equity you’ve built up in your home.
If you already have an FHA or VA loan, you might qualify for a streamlined refinance that requires less paperwork.
In February 2019, Wells Fargo announced that it was updating its processes to meet changes to the VA’s refinancing program. For the time being, Wells Fargo is only accepting applications for VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loans (IRRRLs).
Home equity loan
If you want to borrow against your home, Wells Fargo also offers home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) of $25,000 to $500,000. Your limit will be roughly 85% of your home’s value, minus the balance of your existing mortgage.
You can draw on your line of credit for 10 years and 1 month, after which any outstanding balance will have a 20-year repayment term. As is typically the case with HELOCs, your interest rate will be variable, although during your period Wells Fargo offers the option of converting some or all of your balance to a fixed rate and term.
How Wells Fargo shines
If you’re thinking about buying or refinancing a home, Wells Fargo could be a good choice if:
- You’re more comfortable doing business when you can meet with a loan officer face-to-face
- You’re an existing Wells Fargo customer who would benefit from having much of your application pre-filled
- You’re looking for a wide selection of home loans that can fit your specific needs
Compare other lenders
Like any direct mortgage lender, Wells Fargo can only offer you its own products, and you might qualify for better rates and terms with another lender. So before you decide if a Wells Fargo home loan is the right choice for you, compare your options with other lenders.
Credible lets you compare personalized mortgage rates from multiple lenders who offer mortgage refinancing and purchase loans. If you qualify, Credible can provide a streamlined preapproval letter in just 3 minutes. Your data is never sold, so you’re protected from spammers. If you find an option you like, Credible’s digital platform automates much of the origination process.
Keep in mind that not all loan products are available through Credible.