PrimeLending Mortgage Review 2024

Good for: those seeking to buy a fixer-upper, build a new home or make renovations.
Abby Badach DoyleTaylor Getler
By
and
Last updated on January 10, 2024
Edited by
✅ Fact checked and reviewed
Alice Holbrook
Edited by
✅ Fact checked and reviewed

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Our Take

3.0

Home loans overall
NerdWallet rating
The Nerdy headline:

PrimeLending stands out for its wide variety of renovation loans, and it also offers construction-to-permanent loans for new builds. Approval letters can be issued in as little as 24 hours to some borrowers. However, the lender doesn’t post mortgage rates on its website, and it doesn’t offer home equity products.

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PrimeLending
PrimeLending: NMLS#13649

Min. credit score
620
Min. down payment
3%
Loan types and products
Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Offers a broad selection of renovation loans to finance cosmetic upgrades or structural repairs.
  • Issues loan approval letters within 24 hours to borrowers who qualify.
  • Offers resources to connect eligible borrowers with closing cost and down payment assistance programs.
  • Receives high marks for customer satisfaction, according to J.D. Power and Zillow.

Cons

  • No online mortgage rates — you have to contact the lender for information.
  • Rates and fees are on the high side, according to the latest federal data.
  • Doesn't offer home equity loans or lines of credit.
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Full Review

What borrowers say about PrimeLending mortgages

NerdWallet’s lender star ratings assess objective qualities, including rates, fees and loan offerings. To assess borrowers’ subjective experiences with lenders, NerdWallet has gathered customer satisfaction ratings from Zillow.

  • PrimeLending receives a score of 735 out of 1,000 in J.D. Power’s 2023 U.S. Mortgage Origination Satisfaction Study. The industry average for origination is 730. (Mortgage origination covers the initial application through closing day.)

  • PrimeLending receives a customer rating of 4.99 out of 5 on Zillow, as of the date of publication. The rating reflects more than 22,130 customer reviews.

PrimeLending’s mortgage loan options

  • 4 of 5 stars

If you’re looking to buy a fixer-upper or finance home renovations, PrimeLending has plenty of experience (and variety) in renovation mortgages. The lender offers a broad selection of loans to help finance cosmetic home upgrades or structural repairs. On the PrimeLending website, a two-minute video explains how renovation loans work and what steps to expect in the process.

A video on the PrimeLending website lists the steps to obtain a renovation loan. Apply online to get prequalified, collect bids, complete an appraisal, close and renovate.
A video on the PrimeLending website lists the steps to obtain a renovation loan. Apply online to get prequalified, collect bids, complete an appraisal, close and renovate.

Government-backed renovation mortgage options include FHA 203(k) loans through the Federal Housing Administration and VA renovation loans from the Department of Veterans Affairs. On the conventional side, PrimeLending offers Fannie Mae HomeStyle and Freddie Mac CHOICERenovation loans. It also offers some unique loans, including two escrow options to designate funds for home repairs or swimming pool construction.

Other unique offerings from PrimeLending include construction-to-permanent loans, which help finance the build of a new home, and reverse mortgages, which allow seniors to tap home equity to pay everyday expenses. The lender also offers conventional mortgages to purchase manufactured homes, which cost less to build than traditional site-built construction and provide an affordable path to homeownership, especially in rural areas.

Beyond its renovation products, PrimeLending provides conventional and government-backed mortgages to purchase or refinance a home, including VA, FHA and USDA loans. Fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages are also available for purchase and refinance, as are jumbo loans for higher-priced homes and cash-out refinance options. However, PrimeLending lost some points in our rubric for not offering home equity loans or lines of credit.

What it’s like to apply for a PrimeLending mortgage

  • 3.5 of 5 stars

PrimeLending offers mortgages in all 50 states. Applicants can complete the loan process entirely online, uploading documents directly into a secure system, e-signing and receiving reminders and updates along the way. That’s convenient when you’re ready to apply for a mortgage on your own time, without waiting for a loan officer to call you back.

If you have documents ready and want to move quickly, you’re in luck: PrimeLending can issue an approval letter in 24 hours to some borrowers. The program, called 1Day AdvantEDGE, speeds up the process for people who meet certain requirements. For example, you need a predictable source of income (such as a W2) as well as the appropriate credit score and debt-to-income ratio to qualify for a conforming loan.

The 1Day AdvantEDGE program from PrimeLending issues credit approval in 24 hours for those who qualify. The website promotes this program and includes customer satisfaction information.
The 1Day AdvantEDGE program from PrimeLending issues credit approval in 24 hours for those who qualify. The website promotes this program and includes customer satisfaction information.

PrimeLending’s contact information is easy to find on its website. However, the lender lost some points for not offering online chat or a chatbot as a customer service option.

We called the customer service line as part of our research and found it to be mostly helpful, with a short hold time. The customer service agent answered a simple question about VA loans. When we asked a more complex question about mortgage pros and cons, the agent placed us on hold to connect with a loan officer. After a 10-minute wait, we were prompted to leave a message.

PrimeLending does offer a mobile app, but it’s only available to real estate agents and builders, not the general public. Other lenders reviewed by NerdWallet offer Apple and Android mobile apps for borrowers to apply for a mortgage online, view documents and make payments.

PrimeLending’s mortgage rates and fees

  • 2 of 5 stars

  • PrimeLending earns 2 of 5 stars for average origination fee.

  • PrimeLending earns 2 of 5 stars for average mortgage rates.

NerdWallet analyzes federal data to compare mortgage lenders’ origination fees and offered mortgage rates. We measure annual averages across all loan types, as reported by the lenders. Compared to other lenders, PrimeLending’s rates and fees are both on the high side.

Borrowers should consider the balance between lender fees and mortgage rates. While it's not always the case, paying upfront fees can lower your mortgage interest rate. Some lenders will charge higher upfront fees to lower their advertised interest rate and make it more attractive. Some lenders just charge higher upfront fees.

PrimeLending’s mortgage rate transparency

  • 1 of 5 stars

PrimeLending doesn’t offer the option to rate-shop online. The lender prefers to provide personalized rate quotes to applicants through a loan officer rather than posting interest rates on its website.

NerdWallet’s transparency ratings are higher for lenders that post sample rates on their sites, making it easier for home buyers to comparison shop, and highest for sites with self-serve tools that allow shoppers to see what rates might be like for their particular loan.

Alternatives to a home loan from PrimeLending

Here are some comparable lenders we review that borrowers can consider.

New American Funding offers FHA 203(k) loans and provides rates online. Flagstar offers construction loans to help finance new builds.

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Bella Angelos contributed to this review.

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Methodology

NerdWallet’s overall ratings for mortgage lenders are evaluated based on four major categories: variety of loan types (purchase, refinance, fixed and adjustable, for example), ease of application, rates and fees and rate transparency. Among the factors we consider when scoring these categories are options to apply for and track loans online, the level of detail about mortgage rates on lender websites and our analysis of the rates and fees lenders reported in the latest available Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data. These scores generate ratings from 1 star (poor) to 5 stars (excellent).

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