Quicken Loans overtook Wells Fargo as the largest mortgage lender in the U.S. during the fourth quarter of 2017. Quicken Loans, with their Rocket Mortgage platform, reportedly originated $25 billion in home loans in the last three months of 2017. Wells Fargo was second with $23 billion, followed by Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase at $13 billion and $11 billion respectively.

In case you missed it, here’s the Rocket Mortgage ad aired during the Super Bowl…

2018 was poised to be a decent year for mortgage lenders, but likely not for Wells Fargo. Serial missteps at the former top originator could pinch mortgage volume at Wells even further, particularly since the Federal Reserve just gave Wells Fargo a rather belated slap on the wrist sanction for their “widespread consumer abuses and compliance breakdowns”, or as I would call it, a massive fraud against consumers.

Truth be told, I won’t shed any tears for Wells. While a number of relocation companies and corporations may still have partnerships with the Wells Fargo mortgage division, my experience with the Wells’ underwriting department has been less than stellar. I can’t imagine why anyone would want to deal with Wells considering the recent revelations regarding the bank’s asleep-at-the wheel leadership.

If you are looking for a good mortgage lender, remember there are a number of factors that come into play when obtaining a home loan. Service, rates and fees are just some of items to consider. Be sure to get several quotes for your home loan and find a mortgage lender that is responsive to your needs and questions.

I’m a huge fan of credit unions, so don’t forget your local home loan options in addition to the big players in the mortgage lender space. Last but not least, beware of conflicts of interest and/or affiliated business arrangements. This is particularly an issue with new home builders, many of whom steer customers to their in-house or affiliated mortgage divisions.

That new home builder’s financing arm often has a vested interest in playing with the numbers to recoup some of your builder “incentive” money. You could end up paying a higher rate than necessary (or higher than what’s available in the wholesale market) if you don’t understand the game with yield spreads and points. If you have questions about mortgage lenders, Aaron Layman Properties is happy to assist you.