Citibank Mortgage Review

Citibank has diverse mortgage and refinance options, including 3/1 ARM mortgages and a unique HomeRun Mortgage for 3% down and no mortgage insurance requirements. Customer service ratings are lacking, however, and borrowers will need to watch out for application fees and other fees.

J.D. Power Rating
3/5
Min. Credit
620
Min. Down Payment
3%
SimpleScore
3.2 / 5.0
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SimpleScore Citibank 3.2
Perks 4
Credit Impact 4
Customer Satisfaction 3
Product Variety 4
Fees 1

The well-known bank has a wide variety of mortgage options, including those for short terms and low down payments without required mortgage insurance.

Citibank was founded in 1812 as City Bank of New York. Today, Citibank has a presence in 97 countries around the globe and is one of the largest banks in the world, with $1.84 trillion in assets. Citibank offers a range of financial services, including credit cards like the Citi Rewards+™ Card, and Citibank home mortgage loans. Citibank mortgage rates typically aren’t included among the best mortgage rates. Citibank reviews and mortgage Citibank ratings fall short, meaning it’s not one of the best mortgage lenders.

In this article

    Citibank at a glance

    LenderLoan AmountAPR RangeTermsKey Benefit
    CitibankUp to $1,472,5502.75%–3.163%15–30 years, 7/1 ARMDiverse terms are available

    What we like about it

    Citibank has a unique home loan program called the HomeRun Mortgage. With this Citibank mortgage program, borrowers can make a down payment for as low as 3% without having to pay mortgage insurance. The program is available for both purchasing and refinancing, with loans of up to $765,600.

    If you bank with Citibank, you can look forward to a “relationship reward” discount off your Citibank mortgage rates, up to 5/8% off the interest rate depending on how much you have deposited or invested with the institution.

    Things to consider

    Citibank charges a non-refundable home mortgage fee for applying. You also won’t be able to get preapproval or prequalification online, as some other lenders offer.

    Citibank also falls in the middle of the pack of lenders in terms of customer satisfaction. In the JD Power 2019 U.S. Primary Mortgage Servicer Satisfaction Study, nine other lenders had better scores than Citibank’s 3/5 rating.

    Also, if you’re looking for a USDA loan, you can’t get one with Citibank. This is a con for homebuyers and refinancers interested in living in rural areas who want to take advantage of potentially lower mortgage rates.

    [Read: 7 Crucial Steps to Buying a Home]

    What you need to know

    Citibank offers jumbo mortgages for more than $1.47 million, with no minimum loan amounts for federal VA or FHA loans.

    One benefit of Citibank mortgages is flexible terms. In addition to fixed 15-year and 30-year mortgage options, there is also a 7/1 ARM mortgage available. That’s a large number of options compared to some lenders. The HomeRun Mortgage program is another unique feature, offering a mortgage for as little as 3% down with no mortgage insurance requirements.

    To apply for a Citibank mortgage, you’ll need to have information about the property you want to buy or refinance, your employment situation,  income details (including W2s and recent pay stubs) and asset information (including checking, savings and retirement funds).

    Start the process online or call 1-800-248-4638. You can also stop into a Citibank branch with the required information to meet with a mortgage representative. Citibank also offers an online option to have the lender call you.

    Collateral and criteria

    Like most conventional mortgage requirements, most Citibank mortgages require a minimum credit score of 620. You’ll only need 3% down to get a mortgage with Citibank, but with a VA loan, you may be able to get a mortgage without a down payment. If your credit score is lower than 620, you can still talk with a mortgage representative to explore other lending options or learn how to increase your score to get approved.

    You will need to provide employment details to get a loan. The required debt-to-income ratio is lower than 43% to get approved for a Citibank loan.

    Citibank alternatives

    Citibank vs. Rocket Mortgage

    Rocket Loans promises a “rocket fast” decision as well as quick access to your loan funds once you’re approved.

    J.D. Power Rating
    5/5
    Min. Credit
    620
    Min. Down Payment
    3%
    SimpleScore
    3.4 / 5.0
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    SimpleScore Rocket Mortgage 3.4
    Perks 4
    Credit Impact 4
    Customer Satisfaction 5
    Product Variety 3
    Fees 1

    Rocket Loans is part of the Quicken Loans family, which was established back in 1985. Headquartered in Detroit, Rocket Loans aims to offer a quick and easy online personal loan and mortgage process that is unencumbered by the excess paperwork and minutiae required by traditional lenders.

    • For those looking for a USDA loan, Rocket Mortgage is a good option, since it offers all the products Citibank does plus USDA loans. Its convenient online process makes Rocket Mortgage a leading refinance option. Under Quicken Loans, APRs for fixed mortgages with Rocket Mortgage range between 3.088% to 4.62%, which tend to be slightly higher than Citibank.
    • If you’re a Citibank customer, you could save money on your mortgage with a Citibank mortgage. But if you want to refinance right from your phone without a lot of hassle, or get a USDA loan, Rocket Mortgage is a nice alternative. Also, the minimum credit score with Rocket Mortgage is lower, at 580, making this a good option for borrowers with lower credit scores.

    Citibank vs. Bank of America

    Homebuyers looking for variety of options and competitive rates through a trusted lender may want to consider Bank of America as their lending partner.

    J.D. Power Rating
    3/5
    Min. Credit
    620
    Min. Down Payment
    3%
    SimpleScore
    3.8 / 5.0
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    SimpleScore Bank of America 3.8
    Perks 5
    Credit Impact 3
    Customer Satisfaction 3
    Product Variety 4
    Fees 4

    Founded originally in 1904, Bank of America currently has its headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina. As the second-largest bank in the U.S. by assets, Bank of America is well equipped to handle all of your borrowing needs, including mortgages. Bank of America mortgage loans are available in many variations, including FHA, VA, ARMs — 5, 7 and 10 year — and fixed-rate — 15, 20 and 30 year — options.

    • Bank of America has similar APRs compared to Citibank, with a 3.568% APR for 30-year fixed mortgages, a lower 2.859% for 15-year fixed mortgages and a 2.937% APR for 5/1 ARM variable mortgages. Like Citibank, Bank of America offers perks if you bank with the company and apply for a mortgage with the bank. If you bank with Bank of America, you can save on mortgage costs by qualifying for a reduction of up to $600 in the mortgage application fee.
    • Bank of America offers the same types of mortgage products Citibank does, but with limitations. There’s not a 3/1 ARM offered at Bank of America. However, the bank has its own Affordable Loan Solution mortgage product, offering a loan for a 3% down payment with no mortgage insurance required. Overall, it might make sense to choose the lender you already bank with to maximize potential savings.

    Compare top mortgage lenders

    We welcome your feedback on this article and would love to hear about your experience with the mortgage loans we recommend. Contact us at inquiries@thesimpledollar.com with comments or questions.

    Methodology

    SimpleScore

    We’ve created the SimpleScore to help you objectively compare products and services here at The Simple Dollar.

    Our editorial team:

    • Identifies five factors to compare across each brand
    • Determines the rating criteria for each factor
    • Calculate an average of those five factor scores to get one SimpleScore

    We break down each of these five factors and their rating criteria for our review of the best mortgage companies.

    Why do some brands have different SimpleScores on different pages?

    Some brands like Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Chase have different SimpleScores because they offer more than one financial solution — like home loans, auto loans, personal loans and more.

    For instance, in our Bank of America Mortgage Review, we give the company a 3.8 out 5 based on our five rating factors for mortgages. In our Bank of America Auto Loans Review, we give the company a 4.4 out of 5 based on our rating factors for auto loans. By tailoring our SimpleScore to each financial solution, we’re able to give you a more accurate view of a brand’s services and how it compares to competitors’ services.

    Perks

    Mortgage lending companies that provide more perks receive a higher score from us.

    Hard/Soft credit checks

    We know that credit checks affect your score –– that’s why we favor companies that offer soft credit checks or hard credit checks when you want to see your pre-approval rates.

    Customer satisfaction

    We use the J.D. Power 2019 Mortgage Origination Satisfaction Study℠ to find out how customers rate their experience with each company. (If a company is not included in J.D. Power’s study, we skip this rating factor and average the remaining factor scores.)

    Product variety

    Mortgage lenders that offer more products for their home loans are given higher scores.

    Fees

    Fees can add up fast. Companies that don’t require as many fees for your home loan receive a higher score with us.

    Nicki Escudero

    Contributing Writer

    Nicki Escudero is a freelance writer and journalist with more than 18 years of experience in the publishing industry, writing for international publications such as USA Today, Entrepreneur, Marketing Land, American Art Collector magazine and the Arizona Republic. She is passionate about helping readers discover helpful tips that lead to happier, healthier lives. A former Australian expat, Nicki has a passion for world travel and loves to learn about new cultures.

    Reviewed by

    • Andrea Perez
      Andrea Perez
      Personal Finance Editor

      Andrea Perez is an editor at The Simple Dollar specializing in personal finance. Prior to that she specialized in digital marketing content for online learning websites. She holds a master’s degree in journalism and media studies from the University of South Florida.