Best Mortgage Lenders in Alabama

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Contributor, Benzinga
May 19, 2020

A diverse state complete with Southern charm, Alabama is a great place to call home. Whether you’re buying a home or refinancing your current abode, you want to work with a top-notch lender. Here’s our guide to the best Alabama mortgage lenders

Best Mortgage Lenders in Alabama Right Now:

The Best Mortgage Companies in Alabama

Here are Benzinga’s picks for the best mortgage lenders in Alabama. We’re confident this list can help you choose the best lender for you. 

1. Best for First Time Home Buyers: Regions

Headquartered in Birmingham, Regions has almost 200 branches located throughout Alabama. This makes it easy for first-time home buyers to get in-person assistance. 

Regions offers home loans designed for first-time buyers. It also offers conventional, FHA and VA mortgages. It’s also an approved lender with Alabama’s home-buyer programs, which provide down payment assistance to qualified borrowers. 

2. Best Online Lender: Better.com

A lot of lenders offer all or part of their mortgage process online.

What sets Better.com apart for Alabama residents is that it uses technology to improve the mortgage process. 

You can get a loan estimate in minutes. Just follow every step of the mortgage process.

Better.com doesn’t charge any lender fees and offers fixed- and adjustable-rate conventional loans and jumbo loans.  

Quicken Loans
Best For
  • Online Service

3. Best for FHA Loans in Alabama: Rocket Mortgage®

Rocket Mortgage makes it easy to get an FHA loan from the comfort of your home. You can start the process by phone, chat or by using the Rocket Mortgage® online platform. 

Loan experts will work with you to help you decide whether an FHA loan is right for you. If it is, you’ll receive award-winning customer support every step of the way. Rocket Mortgage also offers conventional, VA, jumbo and proprietary products. It also offers FHA refinances. 

Veterans United
securely through Veterans United's website

4. Best for VA Loans: Veterans United

Veterans United has been the top VA lender for 2 years running. It works closely with advisors from every branch of the military to ensure it provides excellent service to veterans and service members. Its representatives are available around the clock to assist you no matter where you’re stationed. 

Veterans United offers VA purchase loans as well as VA loan refinances. It has stellar reviews from almost 200,000 homeowners who praise the expertise and the easy loan process they experienced with Veterans United. 

Mortgages Explained

Choosing the right mortgage can be a challenge. Let’s take a look at how mortgages are structured so you can make an informed decision about what’s best for you.

Mortgage Type

Mortgage types refer to whether a federal agency directly oversees your mortgage. Here are the most common types of mortgages. 

  • Conventional mortgages aren’t insured by a government agency. These loans may require a higher credit score than government-backed mortgages, but the requirements vary by lender. 
  • FHA loans are backed by the Federal Housing Administration and have low credit score requirements and a minimum down payment of 3.5%.
  • VA loans are backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs and offers a loan program for current service members, veterans and some surviving spouses. VA loans typically don’t require a down payment and they have flexible credit requirements. 

Mortgage Term

Your mortgage term refers to how your home loan is structured. Here are a few options you might see. 

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages are loans that lenders schedule your payments over 30 years, which means you have lower monthly payments than you would with a shorter mortgage term. The lender also offers a fixed interest rate, which means that the rate never changes. That means your monthly loan payments also won’t change. 
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages mean that your payments are designed to end after 15 years. This means you have higher monthly payments but you have the potential to own your home sooner. Your interest rate and monthly payments stay the same as long as you have that mortgage.
  • 5/1 ARMs are a type of adjustable-rate mortgage. With this type of mortgage, the lender can change your interest rate. This means your monthly payment can also change. Most ARMs have a low introductory interest rate, which is why borrowers sometimes choose this type of mortgage. A 5/1 ARM has a fixed introductory rate for the first 5 years. After that, the lender can adjust the rate once per year. 

Which Mortgage Lender is Best for You?

Which Alabama lender is best for you? Here are a few factors to consider. 

  • Availability: Do you want a loan officer you can meet with in person? Or would you rather handle everything via phone, email or chat? Look for a lender that’s available in a way that works for you. 
  • Service: Are lender representatives knowledgeable and professional? Do you feel valued? Does the lender respond promptly to your questions? Look for a lender that provides excellent service. 
  • Expertise: Is the lender experienced with the type of mortgage you need? For example, government-backed mortgages require extensive documentation. If a lender doesn’t handle these mortgages regularly, the process could take longer than it needs to. Look for a lender that regularly handles the type of mortgage you prefer. 

Lender Credit Score Minimums in Alabama

Lenders use your credit history to decide whether to offer you a home loan and what rate to offer you. Your credit score provides a snapshot of your credit history. To qualify for a home loan, you need to have the minimum credit score required by your lender. Here are the minimums for several Alabama lenders. 

LenderMinimum Credit Score Required
Quicken Loans®620
Veterans United660
better.com620
loanDepot620
Luxury Mortgage580

Current Mortgage Rates in Alabama

Lenders change interest rates frequently. Sometimes they change them every day. Lenders change rates to reflect what’s happening in the world around us. If the economy is booming, mortgage rates will be higher. If the economy isn’t doing as well, lenders lower interest rates to encourage people to borrow money. 

Here are the current rates for mortgages in Alabama. 

Loan TypeRateAPR
30-year fixed 6.104% 6.181%
15-year fixed 5.986% 6.125%
7/1 ARM (adjustable rate) N/A N/A
5/1 ARM (adjustable rate) 5.792% 7.388%
Rates based on an average home price of $175,000 and a down payment of 20%.
See more mortgage rates on Zillow

Average Days to Close on a Loan

Mortgages take some time to process. The time from when you start the application to when you sign on the dotted line is called the closing process. You’ll need to schedule a home inspection and respond to requests for information from your lender. 

After reviewing all your information, your lender will let you know whether you’ve been approved for the loan. The next step is scheduling your closing. This is a meeting where you sign your required documents and pay any funds that are due. You’ll receive your loan documents a few days before your meeting — review those documents carefully. Make sure you understand everything and ask questions. 

Here’s how long it takes several Alabama lenders to close.

LenderAverage Days to Close
Better.com21
Quicken Loans30
loanDepot13
Luxury Mortgage35
Veterans United40

Which Lender is Right for You?

Choosing a mortgage is a tough decision. The right option depends on your financial situation, whether you have funds for a down payment and the type of home you’re planning to buy or refinance. A good lender can help you sort through your options and choose the mortgage that’s a match for you. 

Get Ready for Take Off

Rocket Mortgage® is an online mortgage experience developed by the firm formerly known as Quicken Loans®, America’s largest mortgage lender. Rocket Mortgage® makes it easy to get a mortgage — you just tell the company about yourself, your home, your finances and Rocket Mortgage® gives you real interest rates and numbers. You can use Rocket Mortgage® to get approved, ask questions about your mortgage, manage your payments and more.

You can work at your own pace and someone is always there to answer your questions — 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Want a fast, convenient way to get a mortgage? Give Rocket Mortgage® a try.