An online lender called “Owning” is looking to shake up the mortgage industry with what it refers to as “ridiculously low rates.”
In the past, they doubled as a mortgage lender and real estate company, offering mortgage refinancing at low rates and a variety of home buying and selling tools including iBuying.
But in early 2021, Owning was acquired by Chicago-based Guaranteed Rate, and will act as its lead generator going forward.
The company now focuses on helping aspiring home buyers finance a property, and current homeowners interested in securing a lower rate on their existing home loan.
Aside from attempting to make the process easier via new technology, they also offer an on-time closing guarantee. Read on to learn more.
Owning Fast Facts
- Direct-to-consumer mortgage lender offering home purchase loans and refinances
- Founded in 2018, headquartered in Orange, California
- Acquired by Guaranteed Rate in early 2021
- Licensed to lend in 43 states and the District of Columbia
- Specialize in low-rate mortgage refinances and home purchases
- BBB accredited with an ‘A+’ rating at the moment
- 4.9-star rating on Google based on over 2,100 customer reviews
- Not available in Alaska, Kentucky, Nevada, New York, Rhode Island, Utah, or Vermont
What Owning Offers
- Home purchase loans
- Refinance loans (rate and term and cash out)
- Conventional loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
- Jumbo loans that exceed the conforming limit
- FHA/VA/USDA loans
- Fixed-rate and adjustable-rate options
- Lend on primary, second, and investment properties
The Orange, CA-based company offers two core products to consumers looking for a home loan.
A refinance product for existing homeowners. And a home purchase product for those looking to purchase a property.
But since being acquired by Guaranteed Rate in 2021, they essentially became the online lead generator for their parent company.
This means keeping things simple, leading with their mortgage rates, and leaning on the latest technology to do things quickly and efficiently.
It’s unclear if Owning will still refinance your existing home loan with no closing costs, including third-party fees like appraisal, credit report, escrow, title insurance, and more.
That offering was similar to CashCall’s No Closing Cost Mortgage and the companies appeared to compete in the SoCal market.
But nowadays many lenders require borrowers to pay discount points to keep interest rates at reasonable levels.
Anyway, my guess is you can utilize a lender credit to keep closing costs down if that’s your desire.
Owning Mortgage Rates
As noted, Owning has become a streamlined, online-only mortgage lender. This means they offer a fully-digital process and in their words, “low rates.”
But you don’t have to take their word for it. If you visit their website, you’ll see their mortgage rates front and center at the top of the page.
They also have a calculator that lets you adjust a couple inputs to generate a real-time quote.
Both a 30-year fixed and 15-year fixed are listed as options, though other loan types may also be available depending on market conditions.
If you click on “rates,” you can access the more robust version of their online rate calculator.
Be sure to click on the loan assumptions to see what they’re basing rates on, e.g. purchase price, down payment, FICO score, discount points required, etc.
How to Apply
To get started, simply visit their website from your computer or smartphone. From there, you can use their rate calculator to determine today’s rates.
Or you can click on “get started” or “start owning” to fill out a short online lead form. You’ll also see a phone number and email address if you want to reach out directly.
Once you move forward, their loan process is mostly paperless. It allows for the e-signing of disclosures, importing bank account information, and uploading documentation.
You’ll be able to sign in to check loan status, satisfy outstanding conditions, and get in touch with your lending team.
All in all, they appear to make it easy to apply for a home loan. And they aim to close in as few as 14 days.
On Time Closing Guarantee
If you’re concerned about timing, take comfort in Owning’s On Time Closing Guarantee.
Simply put, if your loan does not close by the original specified closing date (purchase or refinance) the company will mail a check for $2,000 within 90 days of the request being submitted.
Eligible borrowers must request a refund check in the mail by submitting a request to firstname.lastname@example.org within 30 calendar days of loan closing.
However, there a lot of exclusions. The borrower’s down payment must be 5%+, it can’t be a USDA loan, and the borrower can’t own two or more properties.
It’s unclear if that total includes the subject property. And of course the standard exclusions apply like appraisal delays, force majeure events, and so on.
Be sure to speak to your loan officer ahead of time to iron out these details.
On Google, Owning has a stellar 4.9/5-star rating from over 2,100 customer reviews at last count (March 2023).
Over at Zillow, they’ve got a 4.80/5 from about 265 reviews, and at Bankrate a 4.9/5 from roughly 40 reviews.
They aren’t Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited, but they do hold an ‘A+’ rating based on customer complaints.
And they have a solid 4.81/5 rating from nearly 100 customer reviews on the BBB website, which is pretty impressive.
To sum things up, this streamlined, no-frills online lender offers the basics that most consumers are probably looking for.
A possible negative might be a lack of physical locations, but for those savvy enough to go the online route, they could be a breath of fresh air.
Assuming their mortgage rates are competitive, they could be a good option for those refinancing or even a prospective home buyer.
Just be sure to take the time to compare Owning to other companies to ensure you get the best deal and quality service.
Owning Pros and Cons
- Advertise their mortgage rates online
- Offer a fully-digital home loan process
- Can apply online or via smartphone
- Plenty of loan programs to choose from
- Excellent customer reviews
- A+ BBB rating
- On-time closing guarantee
- Staff also speak Spanish and Vietnamese
The Maybe Not
- Aren’t licensed in Alaska, Kentucky, Nevada, New York, Rhode Island, Utah, or Vermont
- No physical locations
- Do not appear to offer second mortgages
- May have limited product offerings depending on market conditions