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Fairway Independent Mortgage Review 2020

Editor’s note: The overall conclusions, recommendations and opinions are the author’s alone. The information in this article is accurate as of the date of publishing.

Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp. is a mortgage lender with headquarters in Madison, Wis., and Carrollton, Texas. The company was founded in 1996, and currently has branches in 48 states and the District of Columbia.

Working with Fairway Independent Mortgage

Fairway Independent Mortgage offers mortgages to residents in all states (except Alaska) and in the District of Columbia. Fairway employs more than 7,000 employees (including over 3,000 loan originators) across more than 500 branches.

Through June 30, 2020, Fairway originated $26.39 billion in loan volume, according to its website.

Fairway Independent Mortgage products

Customers have a wide variety of mortgage programs to choose from, including government-backed loans and reverse mortgages.

Fixed-rate mortgages. Borrowers desiring a steady monthly payment and interest rate can choose a fixed-rate option.

Adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs). Fairway customers can choose ARMs with initial rates fixed for three to 10 years.

Conventional mortgages. Borrowers with good credit and a larger down payment have fixed-rate and adjustable-rate conventional mortgage options. Borrowers can also purchase a second home with a conventional mortgage.

Jumbo mortgages. For more expensive homes, Fairway offers jumbo loans if the loan exceeds the current maximum conforming loan limit of $510,400 for most areas of the country. Both fixed-rate and adjustable-rate options are available.

FHA loans. Fairway offers loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), ideal for homebuyers with little cash savings and lower credit scores. Fairway offers fixed-rate and ARM FHA loans.

VA loans. Eligible military borrowers may qualify for a fixed-rate or ARM loan guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

Refinance loans. Borrowers might benefit from replacing their current loan with a new lower-rate fixed loan or ARM with a Fairway Independent Mortgage refinance. Homeowners with enough equity may also be able to tap equity to consolidate debt or pay for home improvements.

Renovation loans. Fairway renovation loans allow fixer-upper owners or buyers to roll the repair costs into their home loan. Borrowers can choose from fixed-rate and adjustable-rate loans.

Reverse mortgages. If you’re 62 or older, a reverse mortgage lets you take out your home’s equity in cash and doesn’t require monthly payments (except for property taxes and homeowners insurance). Fixed-rate and adjustable-rate reverse mortgages are available.

The mortgage application process

  • How to apply. FairwayNow is the company’s smartphone app that allows consumers to apply for a loan digitally and receive a preapproval within minutes. Borrowers can also call or visit a loan officer at one of more than 400 Fairway Independent Mortgage branches nationwide.
  • Disclosure process. Borrowers will receive a loan estimate within three business days of submitting a loan application.
  • Submitting loan for approval. Documents can be uploaded through the FairwayNow application via an online portal. Borrowers can track the status of their loan in real time through the app and send messages to both their loan officer and real estate agent.
  • Final approval. After the initial approval, Fairway contacts borrowers again once the appraisal is completed. You’ll receive confirmation of your loan details twice within 10 days of your closing date.
  • Closing. Fairway Independent Mortgage contacts borrowers three to five days ahead of closing to confirm how much cash they’ll need to close.
  • Servicing. Fairway services the loans it makes and offers an online servicing system called FairwayNEXT. Current Fairway customers can find detailed information about their first payment and current or new servicer, and make one-time extra payments online.

Communication during the process

Borrowers using the FairwayNow app can manage all their communications with a loan officer throughout the process and even track the status of their loan at any time. Loan officers and real estate agents can be messaged through the app, too.

A Fairway Independent Mortgage representative will contact the borrower after the loan is approved, and again prior to closing, to review final conditions and verify the closing costs.

Pros and cons of a Fairway Independent Mortgage

Pros

  • Wide array of loan products. Government-backed loans of all types are available, with both fixed-rate and adjustable-rate payment options.
  • Digital mortgage experience. The FairwayNow app gives customers the ability to get approved, communicate with their loan officer, upload documents and track the status of their loan from their smart device.
  • Reverse mortgages are offered. Borrowers ages 62 or older can take out a reverse mortgage to buy or refinance their home.

Cons

  • No home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC) products. Borrowers need to choose from Fairway’s cash-out refinance options to tap equity; home equity loans and HELOCs are not available.
  • No specialty programs. No down payment assistance or specialty programs are available.
  • Website lacks information about borrowing requirements. You’ll have to contact a loan officer for information about minimum credit score, manual underwriting and types of financeable properties.
 

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