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Sebonic Financial Review: Modernizing the Home Loan Process


If you’ve used Zillow’s Marketplace to compare mortgage rates, you may have come across Sebonic Financial.

While they may be unfamiliar to you, they’re actually a dba of Cardinal Financial, which is a top-40 mortgage lender nationally.

So while they might not be as big or as recognizable as other mortgage lenders out there, they’re backed by one the largest mortgage lenders in the country.

You can read my Cardinal Financial review as well if you’re curious about them, but for quick reference, they’re a mortgage bank based out of Charlotte, NC that’s been around since 1987.

Sebonic Financial Quick Facts

  • Direct-to-consumer lender located in Charlotte, North Carolina
  • A dba of Cardinal Financial, a top-40 mortgage company nationally
  • Considered the digital startup division of Cardinal Financial
  • Licensed to do business in all 50 states and the District of Columbia
  • A Zillow Marketplace mortgage lender

Sebonic says it’s a digital startup fueled by tech, new ideas, and fast execution, anchored by the resources of a well-established and experienced mortgage bank.

It’s unclear how long Sebonic Financial has been around, but I recall seeing them for years now, so I would assume nearly a decade or longer despite being known as a newcomer.

I also can’t tell you what the name Sebonic means, whether it’s a made-up word or a surname. I’d like to know the origin and will keep digging on that one.

However, they do appear to be licensed in all 50 states and DC thanks to their relationship with Cardinal Financial, which is a plus.

Additionally, they seem to be the more digitally-oriented division of Cardinal that deals mainly with borrowers looking to apply for a mortgage online, remotely.

So if that’s your thing, they could be a good choice for your mortgage needs, especially if their interest rates and lender fees are low.

Applying for a Home Loan with Sebonic Financial

  • You can apply by phone or request a free rate quote on their website
  • Or use their loan officer directory, then apply via that individual’s personal webpage
  • Some applicants may start the process via the Zillow Marketplace where they seem to advertise heavily
  • They offer a digital mortgage application process known as Octane

Like Cardinal Financial, they offer a proprietary digital mortgage application known as Octane.

It allows you to start the loan process online and complete most things digitally, as opposed to having to fax or email documents.

You can also e-sign documents, scan and upload conditions, check loan progress at any time, and receive status updates as your loan makes its way to the finish line.

You’re able to call them up directly to get started as well, or alternatively request a free rate quote via their website.

Alternatively, you can use the loan officer directory on their website to select an originator to work with, then apply directly via their personal webpage.

As noted, you might also get started if using Zillow’s Marketplace to compare mortgage rates, at which point someone will contact you once you submit your loan request.

Loan Types Offered by Sebonic Financial

  • Home purchase and refinance loans (including cash out)
  • Conventional loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
  • Government-backed loans: FHA, USDA, and VA loans
  • Jumbo loans with loan amounts up to $3 million
  • Interest-only home loans

Sebonic Financial offers the full suite of loans programs on both home purchases and mortgage refinances.

You can also get a cash out refinance if you’re looking to tap your home equity.

You can get financing for a primary residence, second home, or investment property, including condos and townhomes and multi-unit properties.

In terms of loan type, you can get a conventional home loan backed by Fannie/Freddie, or a government-backed loan such as an FHA loan, USDA loan, or VA loan.

They also offer non-conforming stuff like jumbo loans up to $3 million loan amounts and an interest-only jumbo ARM.

You can get a fixed-rate mortgage such as a 30-year or 15-year fixed, or an adjustable-rate mortgage, such as a 5/1 or 7/1 ARM.

It’s unclear if they offer renovation or construction loans, such as the FHA 203k.

Sebonic Financial Mortgage Rates

While they don’t advertise their mortgage rates on their own website, you can often see their daily rates via the Zillow Marketplace.

They seem to be a big advertiser/partner with Zillow, so if you search for mortgage rates via that platform, they’ll often pop up alongside other lenders.

From what I’ve seen personally, their mortgage rates were pretty competitive relative to other lenders on Zillow.

While perhaps not always the very lowest listed, they often advertise their rates with $1 lender fees, compared to other lenders typically charging $1,000 – $2,000.

So while you might see a rate an eighth higher than the cheapest lender listed, don’t forget to factor in the closing costs.

Sebonic Financial Reviews

On Zillow, they’ve got a 4.49-star rating out of 5 based on more than 3,000 customer reviews.

That’s close to excellent, but there are some mixed reviews if you scroll through them.

Some past customers have complained about them not following up or communicating effectively, or even making contact to begin with.

But others have said they aren’t pushy and provide exceptionally responsive service – so your mileage may vary here.

As always, take the time to look at individual loan officer reviews to fine-tune who you ultimately work with for the absolutely best experience possible.

On SocialSurvey, they have a 4.62-star rating out of 5 based on more than 5,600 reviews, which is pretty consistent with their Zillow reviews.

While still very good, there are plenty of mortgage companies with even higher reviews on those sites.

There seems to be a consistency issue, with lots of customers very happy, and the occasional one seemingly dismayed.

This could be one of the drawbacks of working with an online mortgage lender without a physical presence.

The good news is their parent company Cardinal Financial is Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited and has been since 2014.

They currently have an A+ BBB rating and a 4.25 out of 5-star rating based on roughly 200 customer reviews.

Sebonic Financial Pros and Cons

The Good

  • Licensed in all 50 states and DC
  • Backed by a very large and established mortgage bank
  • Provide a digital mortgage experience
  • Offer $1 lender fee options
  • Lots of loan programs to choose from
  • Mostly good reviews on both Zillow and SocialSurvey
  • A+ BBB rating
  • Free mortgage calculators on their website

The Possible Bad

  • Some mixed reviews with folks citing poor communication
  • No branch offices (you work with a loan officer remotely)
  • Don’t publish mortgage rates on their website
  • May not offer construction/renovation loans or home equity loans
  • They may not service your loan after closing

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