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Caliber Home Loans is a private lender that operates and originates mortgage loans in all 50 states. Customers have the option to choose from a variety of loans such as new construction, USDA, VA, FHA, jumbo, and conventional loans. Caliber also has dedicated specialists who go through an in-house VA training program to better assist the military lending community.
Unlike some lenders, Caliber retains the servicing for most of its loans. Once a loan is funded, Caliber will accept the mortgage loan payments and address any questions you may have during the life of your loan. The company also states that in certain cases, it can close loans in as little as 10 business days. Here are a few things to know about this lender if you’re interested in their mortgage products.
Pros and Cons of Caliber Home Loans
Dedicated specialists for those interested in VA loans
Originates loans in all 50 states
Wide variety of products including, conventional, FHA, VA, jumbo, USDA, and new construction loans
Retains servicing for most of its loans
Can close loans in as few as 10 business days
Easy to speak with loan consultants
Non-traditional loan programs can be customized to meet customer’s financial goals
Fee estimates and interest rates are not available online
Requires a hard credit pull to view rates
Caliber Home Loans: Loan Types and Products
Caliber Home Loans has loans for a wide variety of customers, including those in the military community. The lender has a team of specialists who have gone through the company’s in-house VA training program. Here is a full list of the loans they offer:
- Purchase loans
- Refinance loans
- Cash-out refinance loans
- Conventional loans
- HomeOne loans (low down payment)
- HomeStyle Renovation loans
- Home Possible loans
- HomeReady loans
- FHA loans (including FHA 203k and FHA Streamline Refinance)
- VA loans (including VA IRRRL)
- USDA loans
- Jumbo loans
- New construction loans
- Adjustable-rate loans
- Fixed-rate loans
Caliber’s website provides a summary of its loan programs. Customers can use this information to determine which type of loan might be best suited for their circumstances. For example, Caliber describes conventional loans as typically having the lowest interest rates but requiring good credit and stable income. HomeOne loans are available as a low down payment option for home buyers, requiring just a 3% down payment.
Customers who have questions can connect with one of their loan consultants. Contact information is available on the website, and we found it very easy to find and speak with someone on their team. In speaking with one of their loan consultants, we learned they can tailor their loans for each customer’s unique financial situation. As one example, customers could be placed into loan terms in one-year increments instead of more traditional loans, which are typically only offered in five or 10-year increments.
Caliber Home Loans Transparency
Caliber’s website provides a list of the types of loans they offer. Each has a brief summary of its perks and benefits, along with an overview of the requirements for each loan program, such as minimum down payment, credit score, and property type. Educational resources and an FAQ section are also available addressing purchasing, refinancing, mortgage basics for first-time home buyers, and renovation loans.
Caliber does not provide any information on its website about what fees or interest rates you can expect to pay. A quick quote option is available on the website, but instead of providing information about rates or fees, it directs customers to contact a Caliber loan consultant by phone or complete a full loan application online.
We spoke with a loan consultant at Caliber and were told that this is because rates and fees can vary depending on the customer and loan scenario. Additionally, instead of recommending a traditional product, they can also explore non-traditional options to tailor a loan product that will work best for the customer. The downside is, you’ll need to go through the application process and a hard credit check to get Caliber rates or fees. Keep in mind a hard credit check can lower your credit score a few points.
Caliber Home Loans: Rates and Fees
Since Caliber only provides customized rate quotes based on a customer’s specific scenario, a hard pull is required to obtain a Loan Estimate with rate or fee information. However, we learned that underwriting and processing fees usually apply and can total approximately $1,500. Other industry-standard closing costs such as title, appraisal, and government fees could also apply, but the exact costs vary depending on the specific characteristics of the loan.
Customers can find minimum credit score requirements in the FAQ section of the website. A score of 675 is recommended to qualify for the more competitive rates, with conventional loans requiring at least a 620 credit score and FHA and VA government loans needing at least a 580.
Refinancing With Caliber Home Loans
Customers looking to refinance with Caliber can begin the process online or call and speak with one of their loan consultants. Caliber provides a checklist summarizing what general steps are involved with refinancing and states that in certain cases refinances could be completed in as little as 10 days.
Their overview of the refinance process includes working with one of their loan consultants to determine the best loan for your needs. However, because they only provide customized rate quotes, customers must agree to a hard credit pull to view any information about rates, fees, or discounts.
Caliber Home Loans Compared to Other Mortgage Lenders
|Caliber Home Loans||Guild Mortgage||Movement Mortgage|
|Minimum credit score||620 for conventional, 580 for FHA/VA||620 for conventional loans, 600 for FHA/VA/USDA, 680 for jumbo loans||580 (some mortgage programs may require a higher score)|
|Minimum down payment||Varies based on loan program; conventional loans as low as 3%, and VA loans as low as 0%||0% to 3.5% on most loans and 15% on jumbo loans||0% to 3.5%|
|Where does the lender operate?||All 50 states||48 states and Washington, D.C.||All 50 states|
|Major loan types||Purchase, refinance, cash-out refinance, fixed-rate, adjustable-rate, conventional, FHA, VA, jumbo, USDA, new construction||Conventional, jumbo, VA, FHA, USDA, various renovation loans, adjustable-rate, fixed-rate, refinance, cash-out refinance, energy-efficient mortgages, manufactured home loans, bridge loans, reverse mortgages||Conventional, jumbo, VA, FHA, USDA, various renovation loans, adjustable-rate, fixed-rate, refinance, cash-out refinance, reverse mortgages|
How to Shop Around to Get the Best Mortgage Rate
Mortgage lenders charge different interest rates and fees, so it’s always a good idea to check with multiple lenders. Obtaining a Loan Estimate will be tailored to your specific loan scenario and is the best way to get a list of fees charged by the lender. Since rates and fees can vary based on certain loan characteristics like property type, occupancy, and loan amount, it’s best to make sure that each loan estimate is based on the same loan parameters.
Interest rates can also vary each day, so comparing interest rates from different lenders on different days may not be the best way to determine which lender offers the best rate. You can also consider getting loan estimates from different types of lenders, such as credit unions, banks, and private mortgage lenders.
Caliber Home Loans does not allow customers to view any information about rates or fees unless they agree to a hard credit pull. However, the lender does offer a wide variety of traditional and non-traditional programs to try and put customers in the best program for their goals and financial situation, and refinance customers who meet specific requirements could complete the process in as little as 10 days. We found it very easy to speak with a loan consultant, so customers who do not mind having their credit pulled to work with a loan consultant may find Caliber Home Loans to be an excellent choice.