Freedom Mortgage is one of the largest lenders in the United States, with more than one million mortgage customers. The company was founded 28 years ago in New Jersey and is accredited by the region’s Better Business Bureau. Freedom offers several home loan products for both purchases and refinancing.
Freedom Mortgage Facts
- Offers both fixed-rate mortgages and ARMs, in qualified and jumbo loans
- Features government-backed programs from the VA, FHA, and USDA
- Provides refinancing, including for cash-out purposes
- Has multiple calculators and helpful information on its website
- Operates in all 50 states, as one of the top 10 U.S. lenders by volume
Founded in 1990, Freedom Mortgage is a nationwide lender with a wide variety of loan products. Eighth in the U.S. in total originations, it specializes in VA loans and other government-backed offerings. The company is accredited by the New Jersey BBB and has an average customer review score between 2.5 and 3.
Current Mortgage Rates
Freedom Mortgage Specifics
Mortgage Fixed-Rate Loans
A fixed-rate loan represents the simplest financing model available to a borrower. Interest rates are locked in at the time the mortgage is issued, leading to predictable monthly payments over the whole term of the loan.
Freedom Mortgage offers loans on both 15-year and 30-year terms and recommends these products for people who intend to stay in one place for a long time. While adjustable-rate mortgages will have their interest payments trend upward, fixed-rate products guarantee stability.
Mortgage Adjustable-Rate Loans
Another category of conventional home loans, adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) offer lower interest rates than fixed-rate loans, but those rates adjust annually after an initial period. For instance, a 5/1 loan holds its rate for five years, then adjusts every year. A 7/1 version has a seven-year opening before rates change. These loans are ideal for people who plan to sell their homes and move on relatively soon.
Mortgage Jumbo Loans
A jumbo loan is the same as a conventional loan, but for a greater amount. When a borrower needs to secure a larger loan than government agencies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will guarantee, the loan is classified as “jumbo”.
These types of mortgages may come with additional requirements or costs compared to smaller mortgages. The maximum loan amount for conventional and jumbo products differs by region and is higher in more expensive areas. Freedom Mortgage has stricter rules for jumbo loan borrowers regarding credit score, cash on hand, and debt-to-income ratio.
Mortgage FHA Loans
The Federal Housing Authority (FHA) backs loan programs designed to make home-ownership possible for more borrowers. These loans are not originated directly by the FHA, but rather by approved lenders. First-time homeowners often choose these affordable products. One of the primary benefits of an FHA mortgage is a potentially low down payment, with borrowers paying as little as 3.5 percent upfront.
Mortgage VA Loans
Freedom Mortgage prominently features its VA loan products. As with FHA loans, these mortgages are issued by lenders but backed by a government agency, in this case, the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The lender touts the fact that Inside Mortgage Finance, an authoritative industry publication, ranked it as one of the top VA lenders. VA loans tend to have low upfront costs. They may also help borrowers avoid paying mortgage insurance, which is a typical expense for individuals who make small down payments.
Cash-Out Refinance Loans
Cash-out refinancing is the process of replacing a partially paid-off mortgage with a larger one and receiving the difference in cash. The money can then be used to pay off a significant debt such as high-interest credit card balances, since mortgage interest rates tend to be lower.
To take advantage of the tax benefit, this type of refinancing can be used to pay for major home renovations. Freedom Mortgage offers cash-out refinancing in both conventional and VA versions.
The prospective home’s location determines some government-backed mortgage programs. For instance, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) guarantees a category of affordable home loans.
These loans are designed to help people move into safe and well-maintained houses in rural communities and keep these small towns thriving. USDA Loans requirements are designed to include more buyers than other loan types, with more accessible income and debt ratios.
Freedom Mortgage is one of the largest lenders operating today. HousingWire noted that in the most recent data released by the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, Freedom placed fifth, with $38.1 billion in loan originations. It is 11th on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s list of top loan originators.
Freedom Mortgage’s online experience is designed to help buyers learn about its products. This includes tools to calculate predicted rates and payments, as well as informational articles and explanations of the most common loan types.
Unlike some lenders, Freedom Mortgage offers information about minimum credit and debt-to-income requirements directly on its website. There is no information on how the lender’s average closing time compares to the national average of 44 days calculated by Ellie Mae.
Potential borrowers can start the home loan process on the Freedom Mortgage website, with separate options for purchasing and refinancing. The following financial information and documentation are needed to secure a home loan with Freedom Mortgage:
- Name, date of birth, Social Security number, current address (for the past two years)
- Employer name and 30 days of pay stubs
- Two years of W-2 forms and tax returns (including personal and business returns for the self-employed)
- Proof of income from alimony, child support, VA benefits, Social Security
- Rental income proof for the past two years
- Two months of bank statements
- Value of cars, boats, life insurance, securities, and other assets
- Outstanding loan information
- Proof of divorce or separation, alimony, or child support payment data when applicable
- Information on properties owned
- Adverse credit information – bankruptcy, judgments, liens, collections, and more
Unlike some other lenders, Freedom uses real–person reviews as a major selling point, providing a rotating selection of quotations from satisfied customers on its homepage.
While the reviews on the lender’s New Jersey Better Business Bureau page are not as positive as its selected marketing materials, they are higher than for many other financial institutions. From 451 customer review scores, Freedom Mortgage has an average rating of 2.5/5.
The New Jersey BBB has accredited the company by since 2001, and currently has an A rating. The numbers of reviews and complaints are higher than for comparable companies, reflecting the lender’s stature in the industry.
Freedom Mortgage employees have been meticulous about answering or resolving BBB complaints, meaning the details of those issues are no longer public. Many of the negative reviews received in recent months come from customers dissatisfied with the service or care provided by the bank’s representatives.
Freedom Mortgage Lender Reputation
Freedom Mortgage Corporation was founded in 1990, and its National Mortgage Licensing System ID number is 2767.
The lender has had three recent actions against it according to the BBB’s files. In 2016, it settled with the Virginia State Corporation Commission regarding mortgage application terms disclosures.
Later in 2016, Freedom Mortgage settled with the Massachusetts Commissioner of Banks over excess charges relative to state law. That same year, the Department of Housing and Urban Development sued Freedom Mortgage for not fully complying with the FHA loan program.
- Information collected on December 19, 2018
Freedom Mortgage Qualifications
Freedom Mortgage’s requirements differ significantly by loan type. Some offer full details on the website, whereas borrowers must inquire further to learn the exact details for other loan types, such as USDA mortgages.
The following are some of the baseline requirements for the top mortgage types offered by Freedom Mortgage. While the lender emphasizes that some of these figures are flexible based upon borrowers’ other qualifications, they form a general picture of which types are best suited for each consumer’s financial profile.
|Down payment requirements||Debt-to-income requirements||Gift funds allowed?||Minimum FICO credit score|
|20% for no PMI (conventional)||Max 45% (Conventional)||Unspecified (Conventional)||620 (Conventional)|
|20% (Jumbo)||Max 40%||Unspecified (Jumbo)||700 (Jumbo)|
|3.5%(FHA)||Max 43% (FHA)||Yes (FHA)||500 (FHA)|
|None (USDA)||Max 41% (USDA)||Unspecified (USDA)||“Flexible” (USDA)|
|None (VA)||Unspecified (VA)||Unspecified (VA)||None (VA)|
Freedom Mortgage Phone Number & Additional Details
Homepage URL: https://www.freedommortgage.com/
Phone Number: (800) 220-3333
Headquarters Address: 907 Pleasant Valley Ave Suite 3, Mount Laurel, NJ 08054