Wells Fargo Mortgage Review

Wells Fargo offers fixed-rate, adjustable-rate, VA or jumbo loans with rates that are quite competitive compared to other lenders. For example, the starting APR on 7/1 ARM jumbo loans is attractive at 3.054%.

J.D. Power Rating
3/5
Min. Credit
620
Min. Down Payment
3%
SimpleScore
3.6 / 5.0
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SimpleScore Wells Fargo 3.6
Perks 4
Credit Impact 3
Customer Satisfaction 3
Product Variety 4
Fees 4

Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, Wells Fargo has been delivering banking services to customers since 1852. With over $1.89 trillion in assets, Wells Fargo is the fourth-largest bank in the U.S. The bank offers a good variety of mortgage loan products to service a wide array of different needs. Rates are competitive, making Wells Fargo mortgage loans a lender option some borrowers may want to consider. Wells Fargo also offers an interactive mortgage comparison tool to help home buyers decide what type of mortgage might be the best fit for their unique situation.

In this article

    Wells Fargo at a glance

    LenderMin-Max Loan AmountAPR RangeTermsKey Benefit
    Wells FargoN/ASpecific to zip code15 – 30 yearsInteractive mortgage comparison tool

    What we like about Wells Fargo

    Wells Fargo also offers handy technology options to help potential homebuyers navigate the process. The interactive mortgage comparison tool allows potential buyers to input their information and needs and see the different available options. This is ideal for newer buyers who might not have a complete grasp on what type of loan is best for them. The company also offers yourLoan Tracker, which helps to organize and streamline the entire application process.

    Things to consider

    If you’re looking for a shorter-term mortgage so that you can aggressively pay off your principal, you won’t find any loan options at Wells Fargo for less than 15 years. The bank does offer 10/1 and 7/1 ARM mortgages, though, for people who may be looking for a shorter term. Do keep in mind that these are 30-year loans with variable interest rates after the fixed-rate period.

    What you need to know

    Wells Fargo home loans come in quite a few different options, including VA, fixed-rate, adjustable-rate and jumbo loans. Term lengths range from 15 years to 30 years and rates will vary based on your location and overall credit profile. Your actual best rate will depend on your creditworthiness, location, the size and type of the loan. Applying for a Wells Fargo mortgage loan can be done online through the company’s website or at one of the more than 7,400 branch locations.

    Fees and penalties

    Wells Fargo does charge late fees on mortgage payments made after the due date or grace period. Typically, fees are a percentage of the overdue balance. As is the industry standard, Wells Fargo charges closing costs on loans that will vary based on several different loan factors. Generally, these fees are between 2% and 5% of the total loan. According to Wells Fargo, you may be able to qualify for a closing cost credit by taking an approved homebuyer education course.

    How to apply for a Wells Fargo mortgage loan

    1. Decide how you want to apply for your Wells Fargo home loan.

    Wells Fargo offers loan applications online or with a dedicated loan officer at one of the bank’s branch locations. The first step in the application process is deciding which medium you’d like to use.

    2. Collect the necessary documents.

    Once you’ve decided how you want to apply, you need to compile the necessary documents. These include recent pay stubs, W2s or I9s for the past two years, monthly income and debt documents, asset information and any other pertinent financial information. Wells Fargo will provide you with a detailed list during the application process.

    3. Complete the approval process.

    Once you have your documents ready, you’ll need to complete the approval process. You will get personalized rates early in the process that you may qualify for. While this isn’t guaranteed approval, it does give you an idea of what you will most likely qualify for. Once you complete the full approval process, you’ll find out the firm rates you’re being offered on your loan.

    4. Wait for final approval.

    After you complete the approval process, it’s time to wait. Approval times may vary based on company volume and a host of other factors. If Wells Fargo reaches out for anything during the process, make sure you respond quickly and provide what the lender needs. That will be key in speeding up the approval process as much as possible.

    Alternatives to Wells Fargo mortgages

    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
    close
    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.

    • Fixed and adjustable-rate mortgages are available from Bank of America with terms that range from 10 to 30 years. Fixed rate APRs span from 2.625% to 3.375%, and ARMs are available from 2.750% to 3.375%. Prequalification through Bank of America only takes about five minutes online and there is no obligation to borrow from the lender afterward. If you do choose to use Bank of America as your mortgage lender, you will get access to the Home Loan Navigator technology. This program streamlines the application and approval process, allowing you to fill out all forms, submit signed documents and track the entire process from one location. While rates are subject to change, Wells Fargo currently has better APR rates on all listed loan products except for 5/1 ARM loans.

    U.S. Bank

    Customers looking for a U.S. Bank mortgage loan will be pleased with the variety of loans available. This lender offers seven different types of mortgage loans to choose from, with terms that range from 5 years to 30 years. U.S.

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

    U.S. Bank was founded in 1968 and is currently headquartered in the state of Minnesota. It’s the seventh-largest bank in the U.S. when ranked by assets, per Business Insider.

    • U.S. Bank mortgage loans may be an option for borrowers looking for more unique loans, like construction loans or investment loans. Overall, the bank has seven different types of mortgage loans to choose from, with starting rates between 3.630% APR and 6.370% APR. Borrowers looking to save on closing costs may qualify for an up to $1,000 savings credit toward closing costs with U.S. Bank.

    Fairway Independent Mortgage Company

    • One of the top 10 lenders of 2018 with a total volume of loans at $19.6 billion, Fairway Independent Mortgage Company offers just about every type of mortgage you could want, including reverse mortgages, USDA/rural development loans, fixed-rates, ARMs, jumbos, refinances, VA and FHA. With over 400+ branch locations, Fairway Independent Mortgage Company gives prospective borrowers the ability to speak with someone face to face.  The company does not publicly list its current rates, so you will need to reach out to see what it could do for you.

    Compare top mortgage lenders

    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.

    Jason Lee

    Contributing Writer

    Jason Lee is a U.S.-based freelance writer with a passion for writing about dating, banking, tech, personal growth, food and personal finance. As a business owner, relationship strategist, and officer in the U.S. military, Jason enjoys sharing his unique knowledge base and skill sets with the rest of the world. Follow Jason on Facebook here

    Reviewed by

    • Angelica Leicht
      Angelica Leicht
      Editor

      Angelica Leicht is a writer and editor who specializes in everything mortgage-related for The Simple Dollar. Her work has spanned topics that include lending product reviews, interest rate trends, racial biases in mortgage lending and the role of fintech in lending practices, and has appeared in publications such as Interest, Bankrate, The Spruce, Houston Press and VeryWell, among others.