Your State’s Most Popular Mortgage Lender Is Probably Local

Finding the Right Mortgage, Mortgages
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Your State's Most Popular Lender is Probably Local

Home buyers have ample options when choosing a mortgage lender, including neighborhood credit unions, big-name national banks and online-only lenders. But which type appeals the most to consumers across the country? A new NerdWallet analysis shows that for many people, a local bank or credit union — one headquartered in their state — is the top choice.

NerdWallet reviewed 2015 data —the most recent available — from the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act, which collects mortgage transaction information from all lenders in the 50 states and Washington, D.C. In more than 60% of cases, the top mortgage lender was a local one.

If you’re shopping for a home, getting a mortgage preapproval with your lender of choice before you make an offer can give you a competitive edge.

Key takeaways

  • Wells Fargo wins: Wells Fargo was the most commonly used mortgage lender nationwide during 2015. Quicken was the second most popular, and Bank of America was third.
  • Local lenders go toe-to-toe with big banks: However, for each state’s top lender, local institutions came out on top in 60.8% of cases, or 31 states. And home buyers used local banks or credit unions for the majority of all mortgages in nearly half of the states (22). In Hawaii and South Dakota, the top five mortgage lenders were local. Buyers might trust local lenders more, or in some cases, they might offer lower interest rates.
  • Market share is spread out: The average market share for each state’s No. 1 lender was just over 10%. The top lender held the highest percentage of the market in Alaska, where locally based Residential Mortgage LLC originated 29% of the state’s loans. The top lender had the lowest percentage of market share in Texas, where Wells Fargo originated only 4% of loans.

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Most popular lender by state

StateMost popular lenderMarket share of most popular lender within state
AlabamaRegions Bank (AL)6%
AlaskaResidential Mortgage LLC (AK)29%
ArizonaNova Home Loans (AZ)8%
ArkansasArvest Bank (AR)14%
CaliforniaWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)10%
ColoradoCherry Creek Mortgage Co. Inc. (CO)5%
ConnecticutWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)5%
DelawareNew Penn Financial LLC (PA)8%
FloridaWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)5%
GeorgiaWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)6%
HawaiiCentral Pacific Bank (HI)9%
IdahoIdaho Central Credit Union (ID)13%
IllinoisGuaranteed Rate Inc. (IL)8%
IndianaRuoff Mortgage Company Inc. (IN)7%
IowaUniversity Of Iowa Community Credit Union (IA)12%
KansasCapitol Federal Savings Bank (KS)8%
KentuckyCentury Lending Company (KY)7%
LouisianaGMFS LLC (LA)12%
MaineResidential Mortgage Services (ME)16%
MarylandFirst Home Mortgage (MD)7%
MassachusettsGuaranteed Rate Inc. (IL)5%
MichiganQuicken Loans (MI)7%
MinnesotaBell State Bank & Trust (ND)10%
MississippiBancorpSouth Bank (MS)12%
MissouriDAS Acquisition Company LLC (MO)8%
MontanaFirst Interstate Bank (MT)19%
North CarolinaState Employees' Credit Union (NC)9%
North DakotaGate City Bank (ND)18%
NebraskaFirst National Bank Of Omaha (NE)14%
NevadaGuild Mortgage Company (CA)7%
New HampshireResidential Mortgage Services (ME)16%
New JerseyWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)11%
New MexicoFirst Mortgage Company LLC (OK)13%
New YorkWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)10%
OhioThe Huntington National Bank (OH)6%
OklahomaBOKF, NA (OK)9%
OregonGuild Mortgage Company (CA)10%
PennsylvaniaWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)5%
Rhode IslandCoastway Community Bank (RI)8%
South CarolinaWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)6%
South DakotaPlains Commerce Bank (SD)13%
TennesseeMortgage Investors Group (TN)8%
TexasWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)4%
UtahAcademy Mortgage Corporation (UT)11%
VermontNew England Federal Credit Union (VT)27%
VirginiaWells Fargo Bank, NA (SD)6%
WashingtonHomeStreet Bank (WA)8%
Washington, D.C.First Savings Mortgage Corporation (VA)12%
West VirginiaPrimeLending (TX)7%
WisconsinAssociated Bank, NA (WI)6%
WyomingFirst Interstate Bank (MT)24%

Emily Starbuck Crone is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: Twitter: @emstarbuck. Daniel Tonkovich is a data analyst at NerdWallet. Email:

Updated March 22, 2017.


NerdWallet analyzed 2015 data from the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act and grouped mortgage originations by state and lender. We then counted the number of mortgages written by each lender in each state to find the most popular lenders. Finally, we compared the state in which the lenders were headquartered (provided by the HMDA) with the state in which the loans were written in order to categorize loans as out-of-state or local.