Homebridge Financial Services Review 2021
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Homebridge Financial Services, Inc., is a privately-held, non-bank mortgage lender headquartered in Iselin, N.J. The company was founded in 1989 and offers its products and services through retail branches and mortgage brokers throughout the country.
Pros and cons of a Homebridge mortgage
- Offers a wide variety of purchase loan programs
- Offers niche loan programs to meet various special mortgage needs
- Doesn’t offer an online digital application or a dedicated portal to upload necessary documents or track the loan progress
- Doesn’t offer home equity loans or home equity lines of credit (HELOCs)
Working with Homebridge Financial Services
Homebridge is licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. According to Homebridge’s website, the company is not currently licensed in the state of Utah.
Homebridge originated more than $20 billion in mortgage volume in 2019, according to federal Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) data.
Homebridge mortgage borrowing requirements
Homebridge will accept a minimum credit score of 580 for VA interest rate reduction refinance loans (IRRRLs), according to the lender’s website. However, LendingTree was unable to confirm whether the lender offers manual underwriting or which property types are acceptable for financing.
Homebridge mortgage products
- Conventional fixed-rate loans. Borrowers with good credit may qualify for a conventional loan with a 3% down payment. You won’t need private mortgage insurance (PMI) with a down payment of 20% or more.
- FHA loans. Loans backed by the Federal Housing Administration require a 3.5% down payment and permit lower credit scores. Borrowers pay FHA mortgage insurance to protect lenders from losses in case of default.
- VA loans. Eligible military borrowers and surviving spouses may qualify for mortgages with no down payment guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
- Adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs). Homebridge offers ARMs, but its website doesn’t provide details about available terms.
- Jumbo loans. Qualified buyers looking for homes in pricier areas can borrow amounts higher than the conforming loan limits with a jumbo loan.
- USDA loans. Low- to moderate-income rural homebuyers may qualify for a loan with no down payment backed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
- Reverse mortgages. If you’re at least 62 years old, you may be able to refinance a home with a reverse mortgage. Instead of paying a monthly mortgage bill, you’ll be using the equity in your home to receive monthly income, either through a lump sum or a line of credit. Fees will apply.
- Shared-equity down payment assistance program. Homebuyers who are approved for the Unison HomeBuyer program may be able to double the down payment they need and potentially avoid having to pay PMI. The program has no income limits, and the assistance is not a grant or loan. The catch: In exchange for the down payment help, Unison, a San Francisco-based real estate investment management platform, shares ownership in the home and is paid a portion of the profit when it’s sold.
- VA IRRRLs. If you have a current VA loan, you may be able to lower your payment or switch from an adjustable-rate mortgage to a fixed-rate loan with a VA IRRRL. Homebridge allows credit scores as low as 580 on this type of loan.
- VA cash-out refinance loans. Homebridge advertises a cash-out refinance that lets eligible veterans receive a new loan with a lower interest rate, while also tapping into their home equity. Veterans who have traditional, non-VA mortgages may qualify too.
Renovation and construction loans
- FHA 203(k) loans. Current and future homeowners can use an FHA 203(k) loan to purchase or refinance a fixer-upper home and finance repair costs. The loans require a credit score of 620 or more and allow for a down payment as low as 3.5%. They come with restrictions on the type and scope of permitted renovations.
- FHA 203(h) loans. This program allows qualified lenders to provide federally-insured loans to homeowners who have lost a home after a presidentially-declared disaster. The loan covers either the cost of rebuilding or buying a new home. To qualify, your home must be a primary residence, and you’ll need to submit an application within a year of the disaster declaration.
- Fannie Mae HomeStyle® Renovation loans. The Fannie Mae HomeStyle program lets homeowners buy or refinance their current home and renovate with one loan. The program comes with fewer restrictions on the amount and type of renovations than the FHA 203(k).
- Construction loans. Borrowers can finance land and construction costs in one loan with a Homebridge construction-to-permanent loan. Payments are interest-only during construction, and the loan converts to a permanent loan after the home is built. Borrowers pay only a single set of closing costs.
Homebridge special mortgage programs
- Mixed-use loans. Borrowers may be able to use Homebridge’s mixed-use mortgage loan program to renovate, refinance or buy homes that are legally used for both residential and business purposes.
- Energy-efficient mortgages. An FHA energy-efficient mortgage lets borrowers buy or refinance a home and make improvements to reduce energy costs.
The mortgage application process
- How to apply. To start the application process, borrowers need to provide basic information online to have a Homebridge mortgage loan originator reach out to them. Local branches may have onsite loan originators for in-person meetings.
- Disclosure process. Homebridge makes local licensed loan originators available to answer questions and walk borrowers through the loan process. You can either receive and sign documents in person, or electronically via email.
- Submitting loan for approval. Once you’ve sent in an application, a Homebridge loan processor orders a home appraisal and title report. The processor verifies information you provided earlier and reviews your bank statements, income documents and credit history.
- Final approval. The processor will send your loan file to an underwriter, where it’s reviewed to make sure it meets lender guidelines. If any additional information or documents are required, your processor will contact you.
- Closing. Once the loan is approved, Homebridge issues a closing disclosure three business days before your closing date, detailing the final terms of your loan. Either an escrow officer or a closing attorney will schedule the closing.
- Servicing. Homebridge will service your loan or sell it to another servicing company. Homebridge customers can make automatic payments online.
Communication during the process
A Homebridge licensed mortgage loan originator helps borrowers throughout the mortgage process. You can also reach Homebridge toll-free at 888-266-4930.
Existing Homebridge customers can call 866-913-2951 or visit the company’s servicing website for assistance.