What’s it Like to Work With Sites Like LendingTree?
Pros and cons of lead aggregators
You’ve probably seen a few television ads promoting LendingTree or other mortgage lead sites. These sites promise to get you the best mortgage rate by making lenders compete for your business. And sometimes they are helpful, because you can see quotes from several lenders and compare them.
But sometimes they unleash a flurry of hassles while saving you nothing. Or you might even pay a higher rate because the lenders who use these services don’t make any promises about offering the lowest mortgage rates. This article describes how mortgage lead aggregators work and their pros and cons.
How Mortgage Lead Aggregators Work
Sites that promise to get you the best mortgage rates all operate in a similar way. They ask you to complete a form with information about your qualifications and the loan amount you’re looking for. And those sites sell your information to lenders willing to pay for it.
The lenders who pay for your information will start contacting you as quickly as possible, because they want to beat out their competitors, who they know will also be contacting you.
Your job is to get mortgage quotes from these lenders as quickly as possible, compare them, and then pick a couple of competitive bids and see who you prefer.
Advantages of Mortgage Lead Aggregators
The chief advantage of lead aggregators (like LendingTree and other financial sites that solicit reader’s personal information to sell to lenders) is that you may complete one form and receive several mortgage quotes that you can compare. That, in theory, should allow you to be confident that the offer you choose is competitive.
Drawbacks of Lead Aggregators
In a perfect world, you’d fill out a form, receive quotes quickly, choose one and close your mortgage at the best rate. But it won’t necessarily go that smoothly for these reasons:
- You might not get your quotes promptly, which means the information wont be helpful. Because if you have one quote from Monday morning and another from Monday afternoon or even Tuesday, they can’t be meaningfully compared. Mortgage rates change all day just like stock prices and bond interest rates do.
- The lenders that purchase leads almost always want top-drawer clients looking for plain-vanilla loans. If you have credit challenges or want a less-common product, you probably won’t get matched with anyone.
- The lenders who buy these leads can be very persistent when they call you. And call you. And call you.
- There is no guarantee that you’ll be offered the lowest rate for which you qualify.
That’s right. Aggregators can help you get multiple mortgage quotes quickly, but your quotes are only as good as the lenders offering them.
Does LendingTree Offer the Best Mortgage Rates?
LendingTree and sites like it can’t guarantee the best mortgage rates. They have no control over their lending partners.
Note that the mortgage quotes you get are not designed to get you the “best mortgage rate.” In reality, you’ll get mortgage quotes from the lenders that are willing to pay for your personal information. Period. Those lenders intend to get what they paid for and that means you will be fielding calls from multiple loan officers and mortgage brokers, all hoping to get your business.
One lender that pays many of those sites for your information is Quicken Loans. Quicken does many things right. Their TV advertising is effective and they have some efficient systems in place. But they are also one of the more expensive mortgage lenders online.
Gustan Cho Associates Is Different
If you look around this site, you see plenty of opportunities to complete a form. You can do it by clicking right here.
But Gustan Cho Associates will never sell your information, and you won’t get hassled by a bunch of salespeople who paid for your phone number and email address.
When you complete a form on this site, it’s so our lending professionals can compare multiple offers from our wholesale partners. You get the benefit of all those lenders competing for your business without having to dodge their phone calls for years to come.
Gustan Cho Associates is licensed in most states with no lender overlays on government and conforming loans. We are also experts on alternative financing such as non-QM loans and bank statement mortgages for self-employed borrowers. Our team of professionals has been in the banking industry for almost three decades. Unlike FDIC Banks, Gustan Cho Associates has zero lender overlays. We do loans banks won’t do.