Real estate portal Zillow.com launched their new mortgage marketplace today, which promises to be the next generation of comparison shopping for home loans.
The system is pretty straightforward. Essentially, borrowers fill out a form called a “mortgage request” that includes what type of loan program they’d like, if it’s a refinance or a purchase, income level, and other pertinent loan info.
However, they do not provide their social security number, name, address, or phone number, staying anonymous so they can compare mortgage rates and offers from mortgage brokers and lenders, instead of the other way around.
At the same time, brokers and mortgage lenders pay a one-time application fee of $25 for the chance to bid on these requests.
They then have access to the anonymous mortgage requests and can create bids to work with these borrowers.
The system also relies on a feedback system much like Ebay’s that allows borrowers to rate brokers and lenders to make the entire process more transparent.
It’s an interesting, yet very basic approach to mortgage shopping, and could make lead generation services offered by companies like LendingTree and NexTag a thing of the past.