Agora Lending Review: The Home to Leading Rates?

Posted on March 23rd, 2021
Agora Lending Review: The Home to Leading Rates?

Today we’ll check out Agora Lending, which like a lot of online mortgage lenders, says that by leveraging the latest mortgage technology, they’re able to pass the savings on to you.

This means they might have some of the most competitive rates in the industry, and they don’t simply state that fact – they post their daily rates online for all to see.

Instead of guessing, you can see where they stand in seconds by navigating to their website. They also tend to show up on mortgage comparison websites, so you may come across them that way as well.

For the record, the word agora is Greek and means a gathering place, which the company takes a step further and calls a place of gathering within a home.

Let’s learn more about them.

Agora Lending Fast Facts

  • Direct mortgage lender that offers home purchase and refinance loans
  • A division of One American Bank, a South Dakota-based depository
  • Founded in 2017, headquartered in Tempe, Arizona
  • Licensed to do business in all 50 states and the District of Columbia

Agora Lending is a direct-to-consumer mortgage lender based out of Tempe, Arizona that offers home purchase financing and refinance loans.

They are actually a dba of One American Mortgage, and also a division of One American Bank, a South Dakota-based depository.

As such, they are licensed to do business in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, which is a plus.

Because they operate online, you’ll be working remotely with one of their loan officers and loan processors to close your loan.

The good news is they use “next-generation mortgage software” to make it both faster and easier to get from start to finish. And in doing so, they may be able to offer you a lower rate.

How to Apply with Agora Lending

  • Call them up directly or fill out a short online form to get started
  • A loan officer will get in touch to discuss pricing and send you a link to apply
  • They offer a digital mortgage application and the ability to electronically complete and sign forms
  • Aim to close loans quickly and efficiently using the latest mortgage technology

To get started, you can simply call them up on the phone or fill out a short mortgage lead form on their website.

Either way, you’re going to need to speak to someone before you can formally apply for a home loan, which is a slight negative given available technology these days.

But it’s probably in your best interest to inquire about interest rates and pricing before you proceed anyway.

Once you speak with a loan officer, you’ll be sent a registration email that allows you to complete the loan application online via their digital platform.

Most tasks can be completed electronically, such as filling out the application and eSigning disclosures. You can also scan and upload necessary paperwork.

Once submitted, you’ll get updates in real-time as your loan progresses to the next step.

Loan Programs Available at Agora Lending

  • Home purchase loans
  • Refinance loans: rate and term and cash out
  • Conforming loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
  • High balance loans
  • Jumbo loans
  • FHA loans
  • VA loans
  • Fixed-rate and adjustable-rate options
  • They lend on condos/townhomes and investment properties

Agora Lending offers a lot of different loan options, including home purchase loans and refinance loans for all occupancy types.

You can get a rate and term refinance or a cash out refinance, and they lend on all property types, such as condos/townhomes and multi-unit investment properties.

It’s possible to get a conforming loan backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, or a jumbo home loan that exceeds the conforming loan limit.

They also offer FHA loans and VA loans, though these options may only be available for existing homeowners refinancing a home loan.

In terms of specific loan programs, you can get a fixed-rate mortgage in a variety of different lengths, from 10 years to 30 years and everything in between.

They also offer adjustable-rate mortgages, including 3/1, 5/1, 7/1, and 10/1 options.

All in all, they should have a product for most borrowers out there. The only major loan type missing appears to be USDA loans.

Agora Lending Mortgage Rates

One positive to Agora Lending is the fact that mortgage rates are front and center on their website.

Instead of wondering how competitive they, simply cruise over to their website and you’ll see today’s refinance and purchase rates.

No need to sign in or get in touch with a human first. From what I saw, their mortgage rates appeared to be pretty low, slightly below what big banks were advertising on the same day.

Of course, be sure to pay attention to the many loan assumptions in the fine print, such as required down payment, minimum credit score, max loan amount, and so forth.

And take them with a grain of salt because once your loan scenario is presented, rates could be very different. But this is the case with any lender that advertises generic rates.

Ultimately, I give them bonus points for being transparent, as many lenders do not display their mortgage rates online or elsewhere.

That being said, I can’t find anything about lender fees on their website, so it’s unclear if they charge a loan origination fee or other standard fees like processing and underwriting fees.

Be sure to inquire about both lender fees and interest rates when comparison shopping to get the complete picture.

Collectively, this is known as the mortgage APR and is very important to ensure you get an apples-to-apples assessment.

Agora Lending Reviews

On Zillow, Agora Lending has a favorable 4.61-star rating out of 5 from just over 300 customer reviews.

A good number of the reviews indicated that either the interest rate or fees/closing costs were lower than expected. And in some cases both.

Over at Bankrate, the company has a slightly higher 4.7-star rating from about 40 reviews, with most of them perfect 5-star reviews.

And 95% of those who reviewed the company said they would recommend them, which is a great sign.

Additionally, they have a strong 4.5-star rating on LendingTree (and 88% recommend rate), though it’s from a smaller sample size of around 20 reviews.

They have a less favorable 3.2-star rating out of 5 on Credit Karma from just over 50 reviews, with service an issue despite the low rates on offer.

Lastly, they have a ‘C+’ Better Business Bureau rating, which isn’t great. They also aren’t an accredited business, but their parent company has an ‘A+’ rating.

All in all, while Agora Lending has some mixed reviews, many former customers cite their low rates, which could be worth some of the aggravation on the customer satisfaction front.

As such, they may be well-suited for an existing homeowner with a straightforward loan scenario that is seeking a lower mortgage rate.

Agora Lending Pros and Cons

The Good

  • Offer a digital home loan process
  • Can apply for a mortgage online via their website
  • They display their daily mortgage rates online
  • Lots of loan programs to choose from
  • Licensed in all 50 states and D.C.
  • Have mostly good customer reviews

The Maybe Not

  • Do not offer USDA loans
  • Do not service their loans
  • Currently have a C+ BBB rating

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