Best of

6 Best Credit Union Mortgage Lenders of 2020

NerdWalletFebruary 10, 2020

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Credit union mortgages may come with advantages such as lower fees and interest rates. Here are some of the best credit unions for VA loans, home equity products, first-time home buyers and California residents.

Summary of Best Credit Union Mortgage Lenders of 2020

LenderBest ForNational/RegionalMax LTVLearn More
PenFed

PenFed

at PenFed Credit Union

home equity borrowing

National

90%

at PenFed Credit Union

Connexus

Connexus

first-time home buyers & home equity borrowing

National

N/A

Read review
Alliant

Alliant

first-time home buyers

National

N/A

Read review
Navy Federal

Navy Federal

VA home loans

National

N/A

Read review
Golden 1 Credit Union

Golden 1 Credit Union

California borrowers

N/A

N/A

Read review
San Diego Country Credit Union

San Diego Country Credit Union

California borrowers

Regional

N/A

Read review
Logo

at PenFed Credit Union

PenFed: NMLS#401822

Logo

National / Regional

National

Max LTV

90%

at PenFed Credit Union


Why we like it

Ideal for military or government-employee borrowers. PenFed offers a variety of options to tap into home equity.

Pros

  • A variety of home equity options, including an interest-only HELOC.

  • A 5/5 HELOC allows you to lock in a low rate for five years.

Cons

  • Membership required, but it's easier to obtain these days than in years past.

  • Branch offices are in limited locations, following a major military base footprint.

Read Full Review

Connexus: NMLS#649316

Logo

Min. Credit Score

600

Min. Down Payment

3%


Why we like it

Ideal for first-time home buyers who want a low-down-payment mortgage without getting an FHA loan.

Pros

  • Offers a range of fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages in all states but Alaska and Hawaii.

  • Customer support is available across a variety of channels despite limited physical locations.

  • May consider alternative credit data.

Cons

  • Does not offer FHA, VA or USDA loans.

  • Just 13 branch locations in four states (Minnesota, New Hampshire, Ohio and Wisconsin).

Read Full Review

Alliant: NMLS#197185

Logo

National / Regional

National

Min. Down Payment

0%


Why we like it

Ideal for first-time home buyers who qualify for membership, don't have much saved for a down payment and want to avoid mortgage insurance.

Pros

  • First-time home buyers may put zero down and pay no mortgage insurance.

  • Repeat homeowners may put down as little as 5% with no mortgage insurance.

  • Mortgages are available for non-warrantable condominiums.

Cons

  • Only one public branch location in Chicago.

  • As it's a credit union, membership is limited.

Read Full Review

Navy Federal: NMLS#399807

Logo

National / Regional

National

Min. Down Payment

0%


Why we like it

Ideal for military members and their families. Navy Federal Credit Union offers a wide range of mortgage products, an online application and considers alternative credit data for certain loan types.

Pros

  • Wide range of affordable mortgage products designed for military members.

  • Willing to look at nontraditional credit data, such as rent payments, as part of its credit evaluation for certain products.

  • Online application for preapproval with quick decision.

Cons

  • Website does not provide customized mortgage rates based on credit score or other factors before you apply.

Read Full Review

Golden 1 Credit Union: NMLS#00001

Logo

Min. Credit Score

620

Min. Down Payment

3%


Why we like it

Ideal for California residents who want to work with a home-grown credit union that offers a variety of fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages.

Pros

  • Has a wide range of purchase and refinance loans, including FHA.

  • Offers jumbo loans up to $2 million.

  • Preferred Realtor program saves on commissions.

  • Considers alternative credit data.

Cons

  • Charges $850 origination fee.

  • Does not offer VA or USDA loans.

Read Full Review

San Diego Country Credit Union: NMLS#580585

Logo

Min. Down Payment

5%

National / Regional

Regional


Why we like it

San Diego County Credit Union is ideal for borrowers who want a conventional loan, and live or work in San Diego County.

Pros

  • Online loan application and rate tracking.

  • Customized rates available without personal info.

  • Down payments as low as 5%.

  • Offers partial rebates on real estate agent commissions.

Cons

  • No FHA, VA or USDA home loans.

  • Can't digitally sign loan documents.

  • Online preapproval not available for all loan products.

Read Full Review

Last updated on February 10, 2020

Methodology

NerdWallet's selection of mortgage lenders for inclusion here was made based on our evaluation of the products and services that lenders offer to consumers who are actively shopping for the best mortgage. The six key areas we evaluated include the loan types and loan products offered, online capabilities, online mortgage rate information, customer service and the number of complaints filed with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as a percentage of loans issued. We also awarded lenders up to one bonus star for a unique program or borrower focus that set them apart from other lenders. To ensure consistency, our ratings are reviewed by multiple people on the NerdWallet Mortgages team.

To recap our selections...

NerdWallet's Best Credit Union Mortgage Lenders of 2020