Rocket Mortgage Review 2020

Good for: borrowers who appreciate smartphone and online convenience for a fully digital home loan experience powered by Quicken Loans.

Hal M. Bundrick, CFPOctober 5, 2020

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

Our Take

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line: Rocket Mortgage is the online mortgage application tool, with on-demand support, that changed the industry. Loan variety, rates and fees are determined by Quicken Loans.

Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans

at Rocket Mortgage

Min. Credit Score

620

Conventional:

620

FHA:

580

VA:

620

USDA:

620

Min. Down Payment

3%

Loan Types and Products

Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA

See your personalized Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans rate

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See your personalized rate

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Caters to self-service users who want to apply for a home loan online and talk to a human only as necessary.

  • Estimates the loan amount you’ll qualify for within minutes.

  • Offers document and asset retrieval capabilities.

Cons

  • If you’re a “look me in the eye” type of customer, you’re out of luck.

  • Getting a customized interest rate requires a credit check, which can lower your credit score by a few points.

Compare to Other Lenders

Min. Credit Score

620

Conventional:

620

FHA:

580

VA:

620

USDA:

620

Min. Credit Score

620

Conventional:

620

Min. Credit Score

700

Conventional:

700

FHA:

640

VA:

640

USDA:

640

Min. Down Payment

3%

Min. Down Payment

3%

Min. Down Payment

3%

Loan Types and Products

Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA

Loan Types and Products

Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, Fixed, Adjustable

Loan Types and Products

Purchase, Refinance, Home Equity, Reverse, Jumbo, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA

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Full Review

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, getting a mortgage may be a bit of a challenge. Lenders are dealing with high loan demand and staffing issues that may slow down the process. Also, some lenders have increased their fees or temporarily suspended certain loan products. If you can’t pay your current home loan, refer to our mortgage assistance resource. For the latest information on how to cope with financial stress during this pandemic, see NerdWallet’s financial guide to COVID-19.

Rocket Mortgage at a glance

Rocket Mortgage is the online loan shopping and application process offered by Quicken Loans. When you apply for a mortgage through Rocket, underwriters at Quicken decide if you’re approved. The Rocket Mortgage star rating that you see above is based on the products and services offered by Quicken Loans.

Rocket Mortgage loan types and products

Loan offerings displayed within the Rocket Mortgage experience are dictated by Quicken Loans. That means you see the loan lineup of typical nonbank lenders. Conventional loans and government-backed mortgages — like FHA, VA and USDA — are all available, for purchase or refinancing and with fixed or adjustable rates. Home equity loans and home equity lines of credit aren't available.

While Quicken/Rocket doesn’t offer reverse mortgages, an affiliated company, One Reverse Mortgage, does.

Rocket Mortgage online convenience

Rocket Mortgage was launched by Quicken Loans in a blast of commercials touting push-button convenience at orbit-achieving speed.

Everything in the Rocket Mortgage process is about gradually but quickly moving from one step to the next. It feels casual. Well, as casual as taking out a six-figure loan can.

Applying online with Rocket Mortgage

  • It starts by clicking or tapping on one of the "Home Purchase" or "Home Refinance" buttons. You provide the usual contact information to sign in.

  • Answer a few more questions and soon you're at the "See solutions" stage. This is where Rocket Mortgage pulls your credit data and reveals your loan choices. Customize your options by changing the term, the money due at closing or your interest rate — or compare fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages.

  • Once you're satisfied with your loan choice, Rocket Mortgage verifies your qualifications and submits the application to an automated underwriting system.

  • Upon approval, you can lock your loan rate and, if necessary, get a preapproval letter.

  • Once the loan is at the underwriting stage, you and your mortgage team will use Rocket to manage outstanding tasks, e-sign paperwork, monitor the progress of your loan processing, and even schedule your loan closing.

Rocket Mortgage highlights

  • Much of your financial information, such as bank and investment accounts, can be downloaded directly by Rocket Mortgage from many U.S. financial institutions. Rocket can also import income and employment information for many working Americans.

  • Clicking on question mark icons throughout the application process will bring up relevant FAQ answers. Videos also help explain items as you go. Tapping the "Talk to Us" button puts you in touch with a mortgage banker.

  • A typical online application takes about half an hour, according to Rocket Mortgage. But the point is to go at the pace you're most comfortable with.

Rocket Mortgage rates and fees

One of the most important considerations when choosing a mortgage lender is understanding what the loan will cost. Because Rocket Mortgage serves as a digital bridge to Quicken Loans, the rates and fees you see quoted within Rocket are determined by the lender, Quicken Loans.

In order to provide consumers with a general sense of what a lender might charge, NerdWallet scores lenders on two factors regarding fees and mortgage rates:

  • A lender's average origination fee compared with the median of all lenders reporting under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. Quicken Loans, the lender behind Rocket Mortgage, earns 2 of 5 stars on this factor.

  • A lender's offered mortgage rates compared with the best available on comparable loans. Quicken Loans earns 3 of 5 stars on this factor.

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.

You can decide to buy discount points — a fee paid with your closing costs — to reduce your mortgage rate.

Deciding whether to pay higher upfront fees is a matter of considering how long you plan to live in your home and how much cash you have to apply toward closing costs when you sign the loan paperwork.

Rocket Mortgage rate transparency

If you’re trying to get an idea of what prevailing interest rates are, you won’t find sample national rates on the Rocket website. For that, you'll need to head over to QuickenLoans.com. There, you'll find a page ("Today's Mortgage Rates") listing common loans and interest rates.

For rates customized to your situation, create a Rocket Mortgage account and provide some information to get a personalized rate, but remember, viewing those rates may involve a hard credit inquiry.

You may find that the bouncing between Rocket Mortgage and Quicken Loans throughout the loan process to be a little jarring at first. It's likely that Rock Holdings, the parent company of Rocket and Quicken, will phase out the Quicken name eventually. They've been paying for the Quicken naming rights for years while the Rocket name has gained marketing momentum.

For more information on the loan process behind the scenes, see NerdWallet's Quicken Loans review.

NerdWallet’s star ratings for mortgage lenders are awarded based on our evaluation of the products and services each lender offers to consumers who are actively shopping for the best mortgage. The five key areas we evaluated include the variety of loan types and products offered, online conveniences, online mortgage rate information, and the rate spread and origination fee lenders reported in the latest available Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data. To ensure consistency, our ratings are reviewed by multiple people on the NerdWallet Mortgages team.