In general, the time it takes to learn a language will vary from person to person. A lot of factors go into determining how quickly you can learn a language to include how much time you spend on it every day, the quality of your training and your personal ability to pick up a language.
In general you can expect to be able to get around using the basics of a language with 2-3 weeks of full immersion. This means waking up every morning and studying that language until you go to bed. Full immersion is needed to quickly grasp a language otherwise the duration can take months if not years. For example, most college students looking to get a degree in a language will take four years to successfully grasp a language. However, they also often study that language 3-4 times a week for a couple of hours a day. In many cases those students will have the basics of the language down after the first year but wouldn’t be able to fully navigate the language properly until year 2 or 3.
The person is able to satisfy routine travel needs and minimum courtesy requirements.
2. Limited working proficiency
The person is able to satisfy routine social demands and limited work requirements.
3. Minimum professional proficiency
The person can speak the language with sufficient structural accuracy and vocabulary to participate effectively in most formal and informal conversations on practical, social, and professional topics.
4. Full professional proficiency.
The person uses the language fluently and accurately on all levels normally pertinent to professional needs.
5. Native or bilingual proficiency.
The person has speaking proficiency equivalent to that of an educated native speaker.
How Long Does it Take to Learn a Language Through Immersion?
According to FSI, on average, it takes around 480 hours to reach basic fluency in the group 1 language and around 720 hours for the other groups. If you study for 8 hours a day that would be 60 days for group 1 languages and 90 days for the other languages. Again, this is a rough guide.
US Army Special Forces students are all required to learn a language and score a 1+ on the Defense Language Proficiency Test (DLPT). Special Forces students all undergo 6 months of immersion training for their initial training. If a soldier needs to reclass in another language they are sent to a follow on 4 week school. In both cases the students are able to learn some level of proficiency enough to pass the DLPT.
How Long Does it Take to Learn a Language online?
Learning a language through online training only is almost impossible. However, it is a great aid for any other language classes you might be taking. The reality is that not a lot of people are able to learn a language through a simple online course because there isn’t enough interaction with native speakers. In order to really be able to learn a language you need to train your ear to hear the language. Just as important is having someone to teach you on the proper pronunciation. That being said there are a few online programs we recommend using as an aid to your face to face training. These programs are also a great way to just learn the basics before going to a new country.
Rosetta Stone– Rosetta Stone has some excellent training aids that can help you get immersed into the language. This is a great language aid for anyone looking to get down the basics of a language.
Pimsleur– Pimsleur is also a great training aid but we recommend it if you’re looking to increase your listening skills since they have a very comprehensive audio program
Rocket Language– Rocket Language is another great tool and has a good combination of both Rosetta Stone and Pimsleur. These guys are kind of new to the game but still produce a great learning program.
Is English a Hard Language to Learn?
In general, English is actually a very hard language to learn. As English speakers it comes naturally to us, however, for someone who isn’t a native speaker the English language is very complex. One of biggest issues are rules that don’t apply throughout the language. We have things like they are, they’re, their and there…. or two, too and to. All of these can be extremely confusing to someone trying to learn the language for the first time. Like other languages, the English language is more or less difficult depending on the native language of the person trying to learn English. Spanish speakers will have an easier time learning English than someone from China or Japan.
Veterans United – A Leader in the VA Loan Industry
Veterans United was founded in 2002 by two brothers from Columbia, Missouri – Brock and Brant Bukowsky who are still actively involved in the business today. Initially employing just four people, the company currently employs 2400 associates and has grown into one of the leading lenders in the VA loan industry.
Veterans United is a full-service mortgage lender with 26 offices across the country and is licensed in all 50 states. In 2016, Veterans United financed $10.3 billion in VA loans, making it the third-largest vendor in the nation.
Though the company primarily originates VA loans, they also offer FHA, USDA, and conventional loans.
A Distinguished History of Growth
Veterans United has a distinguished history of success and growth. The company has helped thousands of military families to purchase the home of their dreams, and, as a result, they have earned numerous industry awards and recognition:
In 2007, Inc. Magazine put the company at No. 96 on its list of the 500 fastest-growing private companies based on its three-year sales growth of 1,553.3 percent and loan volume of $10.2 million.
In 2012, Inc. Magazine named Veterans United the No. 29 top job creator in the country.
In 2013, Veterans United financed $4.1 billion, accounting for 3% of the VA’s total loan volume. The company held 4.4% of the VA loan market share in 2014.
In 2016, the Virginia Beach Amphitheater announced a 4-year naming rights agreement with Veterans United to rename the venue to The Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater.
In 2017, the company was named by Fortune Magazine to its 100 Best Companies to Work For list at No. 27.
In addition, Veterans United has earned respect and recognition within the home loan industry for its spectacular growth and unmatched customer service:
Veterans United is the nation’s #1 VA Home Purchase Lender
Most VA Purchase Loans of any lender in 2017
Veterans United is recommended by 97.8% of Veterans & Military Families
100,000+ verified customer reviews, averaging a 4.7/5 rating
A network of 6,000 Veteran-friendly real estate agents
VU Loan Specialists undergo extensive training on the VA loan process
150,000+ loans closed for Veterans and service members nationwide
Representatives available 24/7 to serve our troops overseas
Extensive resources to help educate military homebuyers
Making Homeownership Possible for Veterans
Homeownership rates across the country have been declining for many years. Last year the U.S. homeownership rate fell to about 63%, down from the all-time high of 69.2% reached in the fourth quarter of 2004.
However, homeownership among veterans and their families remains strong. According to the Veterans Administration, the homeownership rate among veterans is nearly 82%. For this group of military service members, homeownership is a priority.
Is your home in need of improvement? Find out how to apply for a VA Home Improvement Loan, here.
Of course, the VA loan program provides powerful incentives for veterans to make it easier for them to own a home. To begin with, VA loans are easier to qualify for than conventional loans and they also require no down payment or monthly mortgage insurance.
However, recognizing that many veterans still face challenges in their quest for homeownership, Veterans United provides valuable guidance to them by offering a first-time homebuyer course online.
Veterans United Lighthouse Program
In addition, the company has created the Lighthouse Program – a free credit score education and repair service. If a prospective veteran homeowner is not in a position to qualify for a loan, a Lighthouse credit expert will review their credit profile, consult with them about their finances and goals, and work with them to develop a personalized plan to improve their credit and financial issues in order to put them on a path to prequalification. According to Veterans United, getting help through the Lighthouse Program does not require the veteran or service member to take out a VA home loan through them.
The Lighthouse Program can also benefit loan applicants who can qualify for a home loan but simply want to build their credit score, and in the process, perhaps earn a better mortgage rate.
As a result of programs like these and the strong demand for homeownership among veterans, the national VA loan volume has reached record highs, topping $179 billion in fiscal 2016.
Veterans United also benefited from that national wave of veteran homeownership. In 2014, the company funded $5.1 billion in loans; in 2016, they nearly doubled their loan volume to $10.3 billion.
Advantages for Military Homebuyers
VA loans are available to Veterans, Service Members, and select military spouses. These loans are issued by private lenders and guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
The VA home loan was created in 1944 by the United States government to help returning service members purchase homes without needing a down payment or excellent credit.
This historic benefit program has guaranteed more than 22 million VA loans to help veterans, active-duty military members and their families purchase homes or refinance their mortgages.
Although the VA Loan is a federal program, the government generally does not make direct loans to veterans. Instead, private lenders – like Veterans United – finance the loan while the Department of Veterans Affairs offers a guaranty.
This guaranty, which protects the lender against total loss should the buyer default, provides an incentive for private lenders to offer loans with better terms.
The primary features and benefits of VA loans include the following:
(for qualified borrowers)
VA Loans are among the last 0% down loans on the market today.
No Private Mortgage Insurance
Since VA Loans are government-backed, banks do not require PMI.
Competitive Interest Rates
A VA guaranty typically means a more competitive rate than non-VA loans.
Easier to Qualify
Because the loan is backed by the government, banks assume less risk and have less stringent qualification standards for VA Loans, making them easier to obtain.
Another way the VA loan program makes it easier to qualify for a loan is their consideration of residual income. Residual income is not the same as the typical debt-to-income ratio that most lenders use as part of the loan approval process.
When underwriting a loan, a residual income standard looks for a certain amount of money left over at the end of the month after major debt obligations are paid, including a mortgage, home insurance, taxes, and student loans, but it excludes typical living expenses like a cell phone bill and food.
Also, credit score standards are less stringent for VA loans. Generally speaking, the average FICO score for a VA loan is about 50 points lower than the average score required for a conventional loan.
Veterans United Customer Service
Customer service is another reason why Veterans United has become so successful. Because their customer base is frequently mobile – including being stationed abroad anytime, anywhere – the company offers 24/7 customer service.
It is possible to complete a loan application and prequalify online. Or, if a customer prefers, they can have their questions answered via telephone support. The goal is to provide customer service based on the customer’s schedule.
The process of applying for and being approved for a home loan is hard enough without having to deal with bad customer service. Veterans United enjoys a sterling reputation due to its low volume of service complaints registered with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
In addition, Veterans United provides a client advocate team staffed by former senior enlisted leaders from each branch of the armed forces. These are former military leaders who understand what military life is like and the importance of housing to military families.
Though a VA loan does not require a down payment or private mortgage insurance, there is a funding fee that must be paid to obtain a VA loan. This funding fee goes directly to the VA to ensure the program is available for future generations of military homebuyers. The fee varies depending on the borrower’s circumstances; however, the fee is waived veterans with service-connected disabilities.
The amount of the funding fee is based on the type of loan, the borrower’s credit profile and the area of the country in which the borrower resides. The fees can range from 1.25% to 3.30% of the loan amount, depending on the amount of the down payment. Instead of paying for this fee at closing, VA borrowers can roll the funding fee into their overall loan amount.
The VA also limits closing costs for veterans. Lender fees – such as origination, underwriting and processing charges – can amount to no more than 1% of the loan amount. The borrower is also responsible for typical closing costs and third-party fees, such as appraisal, credit report and recording fees. However, often, a deal can be negotiated which allows sellers to pay most or all of those expenses. Many of Veterans United customers purchase a home with no money due at closing.
VA Construction Loan Fee
If you’re building your home, you’ll also pay another fee on top of the standard funding fee (again, some qualifying members are exempt from this fee due to disability). The upfront construction fee will cost you somewhere between 1.25% and 3.3%.
In November 2011, Veterans United launched a 501(c)(3) charitable entity, Veterans United Foundation. It is a non-profit charitable organization created byVeterans United employees who support the foundation with employee contributions that are matched dollar-for-dollar by the company.
Veterans United Foundation partners with hundreds of military-related and supports families in need. Whether it’s providing the children of a fallen hero the opportunity to throw out the first pitch at a Major League Baseball game, or joining forces with Welcome Home, A Community for Veterans to end Veteran homelessness, the Veterans United Foundation has made a major impact on thousands of military service members and their families.
Quicken Loans Inc. is the nation’s largest home mortgage lender. Between the years of 2013 – 2017, the company closed more than $400 billion of mortgage volume across all 50 states.
Quicken Loans moved its headquarters to downtown Detroit in 2010 and currently, the company and its subsidiaries employ more than 17,000 full-time team members in Detroit’s urban core. The company also operates web-based loan centers in Detroit, Cleveland, Charlotte, and Phoenix, and it operates a centralized loan processing facility in Detroit, as well as its One Reverse Mortgage unit located in San Diego.
In addition, J.D. Power has ranked Quicken Loans as the “Highest in Customer Satisfaction for Primary Mortgage Origination” in the United States for the past eight consecutive years, 2010 – 2017. It also ranked the company as the highest in customer satisfaction among all mortgage servicers the past four years, 2014 – 2017. The company also received 4.5 stars out of 5 on the real estate site, Zillow.
In 2018, Fortune magazine once again included Quicken Loans on its list of “100 Best Companies to Work For” – a distinction the company has achieved for the past 15 consecutive years. In 2017, Computerworld magazine also recognized Quicken Loans as the #1 place to work in technology – an honor the company has received 8 times in the past 12 years.
In some respects, the process of obtaining a mortgage through Quicken Loans is similar to that of traditional lenders. The primary difference is that potential homebuyers can perform most of the loan application steps online, which is why Quicken Loans promotes itself as a more convenient alternative to traditional lenders.
A major element of the company’s success is the ability to manage one’s entire loan application via an online tool called MyQL – a tool created by Quicken that can be accessed either online or via a mobile app, MyQL Mobile.
MyQL allows borrowers to access a personalized websitewhere they can receive messages from Quicken, make payments and even sign documents. The MyQL mobile app (available for both iPhone or Android), operates in the same way. All a borrower requires to gain access to their information is a personalized username and password.
Because of the customer’s ability to track progress online and sign documents electronically, borrowers benefit from a faster mortgage process. According to Quicken Loans, it is possible for some loans to close as quickly within two to four weeks. For these reasons, the company has built a reputation as a convenient way to obtain mortgage financing for one’s home.
From Application to Closing – an Efficient Five-Step Process
Quicken Loans has developed an efficient, well-defined, five-step process in order to apply for and close a Quicken Loans mortgage. The five-step process includes:
1. Application – To get the application underway, borrowers can chat, email or call a Quicken Loans mortgage banker. According to the company, a home loan expert will ask several questions about your goals, then recommend solutions that meet your needs.
2. Credit Review – Like other mortgage lenders, Quicken uses your credit score to determine your eligibility for specific loans and your interest rate. Though the minimum credit score Quicken Loans will consider is 620, most approved applicants have scored well above that. Customers can access their credit report online or have one of its mortgage specialists pull it.
3. Good Faith Deposit – The “good faith deposit” is a feature that works a little somewhat differently than with other lenders. Customers pay a fee up front – between $400 and $750 – to cover the cost of obtaining your credit report, the home appraisal fee, and loan processing costs. The good news is that the company deducts the deposit from your other closing costs, so in the end, you may not be paying more than you would with other lenders.
4. Underwriting – This is the fundamental part of the mortgage process. To ensure you’re eligible for the loan terms you’ve been offered, the lender has to verify your income, assets and other financial information. They also require a property appraisal, proof of employment and credit history, and the property must be the borrower’s primary residence.
5. Closing – One perk of using Quicken Loans is that you can choose where you want to close the loan. It could be at your home, office or even a nearby coffee shop. This is the only stage where you will meet with a Quicken representative in person.
Once the mortgage is settled, customers make monthly payments – either directly to Quicken Loans or to a separate loan servicer, depending on the loan.
A Wide Range of Loans
Quicken Loans offers conventional and government-program mortgages and refinancing options for loans from eight to thirty years. Its loan rates vary depending on the type of loan, but the company’s willingness to work with higher debt-to-income ratios makes it an excellent choice for consumers, especially for those who might not meet the usual lending standards.
Here are the types of loans offered by Quicken Loans:
30-Year Fixed Mortgage
Monthly payments spread over 30 years with a stable fixed rate are lower compared to loans with shorter terms.
15-Year Fixed Mortgage
You pay less interest when monthly payments are spread over 15 years because you pay off your loan faster.
Adjustable Rate Mortgage
Get a low fixed interest rate and lower monthly payments for the first 5, 7 or 10 years.
Choose a custom term with a fixed interest rate from 8 to 29 years that fits your financial goals.
Qualified veterans, service members and spouses can finance up to 100% of their loan and pay less at closing. For more information on VA Loans be sure to check out our comprehensive guide here.
Quicken Loans is a great lender to look at if you’re trying to find a lender who knows what they’re doing when it comes to a VA loan. Their lenders are not only knowledgeable on the process, but they’re extremely attentive and will work hard to save you as much money as possible when you buy your house.
You may qualify for an FHA loan with a lower credit score than other loans, and a down payment as low as 3.5%.
Already have an FHA loan and want a lower interest rate? An FHA Streamline refinance requires fewer steps and documents.
When you need a big loan – from $453,100 to $3,000,000 – you can save with a small interest rate.
For homeowners over age 62 who want to use the equity in their home to meet their financial goals.
Additional Benefits of a Quicken Loans Mortgage
An exclusive online application process but supported by real people when you need them.
Home Loan Experts are available via chat, email and phone to help you understand which loan is right for you.
Quicken Loans has a program that pays private mortgage insurance for people who have less than a 20 percent down payment.
Quicken Loans services 99% of their mortgages in-house, meaning their award-winning customer service continues after your closing.
There is no charge to make your mortgage payments online.
Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans
Rocket Mortgage is a new loan product and service from Quicken Loans that lets a prospective borrower apply and be approved for a mortgage in minutes using just a smartphone app.
Rocket Mortgage’s loans are actually the same kind of mortgages and refinances that most lenders offer, but with less paperwork and more online directions and guidance as a borrower navigatesthrough the mortgage application process. Rocket Mortgage verifies your personal information online as its being entered,ultimately cutting down the time it takes to close on a home.
Since Rocket Mortgage was launched in 2016 with a TV commercial during Super Bowl 50,the company has gained more than 2 million users.
Below are some additional details about the Rocket Mortgage loan service:
Rocket Mortgage is an exclusively online product, so only a computer or mobile device is needed to get started.
Quicken Loans’ Rocket Mortgage products include both fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages.
Rocket Mortgages feature similar credit and down payment requirements as a traditional mortgage you might get from a brick-and-mortar location.
Available in all 50 states.
Quicken Loans Closing Costs
Quicken Loans Closing costs are a bit different than traditional lenders. Quicken Loans takes a good faith deposit which is an upfront deposit designed to cover your credit report, home appraisal, and the processing of your loan. This initial fee is around $400-750 but you end up receiving those funds back when you finalize your closing.
All in all closing costs can upwards of $5,000 and are dependent on your local area. However, below is a quick breakdown of some of those costs.
Appraisal ($225 – $450)
Credit Report ($15 – $30)
Closing Fee ($150 – $400)
Title Company, Title Search or Exam Fee ($150 – $400)
Survey Fee ($150 – $400)
Flood Determination/Life of Loan Coverage ($15 – $25)
Courier Fee ($30)
Title Insurance (Lender’s Policy) (Varies – generally between $175 – $875)
Title Insurance (Owner’s Policy) (Varies – generally between $175 – $875)
Homeowners’ Insurance (Varies – $300 and up)
Buyer’s Attorney Fee (Not required in all states – $400 and up)
Lender’s Attorney Fee (Not required in all states – $150 – $500)
As Quicken Loans has grown and achieved enormous success, so has the company’s commitment to doing well by doing good.
The Quicken Loans Community Fund was created to find innovative ways to make an impact in each of the company’s home communities. The Community Fund’s guiding philosophy is that value can be created for everyone, not just for the company.
The Quicken Loans Community Fund focuses on investments in housing stability, entrepreneurship, education and employment, public space activation, and community sponsorships in Detroit.
Through its For-More-Than-Profit model, the Quicken Loans Community Fund brings together for-profit businesses and non-profit investments. The team is dedicated to investing alongside community partners to build social and financial equity throughout the company’s home cities: Detroit, Cleveland, Charlotte, and Phoenix.
In 2016, Quicken Loans donated more than $16 million to charitable organizations, and their team members have contributed more than 100,000 volunteer hours to various worthy causes.
LendingTree, LLC is a leading online marketplace with one of the largest networks of affiliate lenders in the nation. LendingTree provides a way for its customers to connect with multiple lenders simultaneously for a variety of financial borrowing needs, including home mortgages and personal, student, auto, and small business loans.
Click here to review VA Loan Rates from LendingTree
LendingTree doesn’t generate the loans, but rather matches borrowers to qualified lenders that are likely to approve their loan. As a result, the company offers a wide range of loans and terms, allowing borrowers to evaluate competing offers from the convenience of a single website.
Customers fill out a simple online application that examines their credit profile, after which they are able to shop, compare, and save on the loans they seek. Customers generally receive competing offers from up to five lenders within a few minutes.
In addition, customers can also track their credit scores, review all loan and credit card accounts, and they are also notified when LendingTree identifies a savings opportunity based on real-time loan offer data.
In 1996, Doug Lebda was a young accountant who was in the market to buy his first home. As it turned out, Doug had no problem finding the perfect house,but finding the perfect mortgage wasn’t so easy. Doug went from bank-to-bank, evaluating one offer after another, and he found the entire experience to be time-consuming, complicated and tedious – even for a financially astute accountant.
Believing there must be a better way, Doug asked himself, “Why not create a way for banks to compete for their customers’ business instead of having customers do all the work to find the best deals?”
And thus, a brilliant Internet idea was born. Doug founded LendingTree in 1996 and launched it nationally in 1998. Doug’s essential insight was to put the power back into the hands of consumers, and this was accomplished by creating a centralized location where they could receive multiple loan offers, just by filling out one simple form.
Doug has since moved on from his first home but that original objective is still intact today. LendingTree’s core mission is to empower consumers so they don’t have to go through the hassle and uncertainty he went through all those years ago.
Even in its earliest days, LendingTree was a win-win solution for both borrowers and lenders alike. Borrowers were provided with choice, convenience, and value, and lenders had the opportunity to target consumers whose needs they were best prepared to meet.
In 2003, LendingTree, LLC came to the attention of media mogul, Barry Diller, and the company was acquired by Diller’s IAC/Interactive Corp that May. As a result, LendingTree, LLC joined a number of other great businesses that were also recognized as leaders in their own industries, including Ticketmaster, Ask.com, Home Shopping Network (HSN), and Match.com.
After a few years, LendingTree spun-off from IAC to join newly established Tree.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: TREE) which includes a portfolio of other financial matchmaking services, such as LendingTree Loans, GetSmart.com, and HomeLoanCenter.com.
In 2014, Tree.com rebranded itself back under its original LendingTree flagship name, still offering its multi-product loan matching services. The company’s headquarters are in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Today, many of the nation’s largest lending institutions – including a wealth of local, regional and alternative lenders – have joined the LendingTree marketplace. This diverse network allows LendingTree to offer a way for consumers to shop for a broad range of financing products.
When Lenders Compete for Your Business, You Win!
LendingTree is a leading online loan marketplace with one of the largest networks of lenders in the nation. By giving consumers multiple offers from several lenders in a matter of minutes, LendingTree makes comparison shopping easy.
And as their famous slogan declares – When lenders compete for your business, you win!
Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer looking for a mortgage or you’re in the market for a small business loan, LendingTree can likely connect you to a lender that’s suitable for you. Some of their many financial products and tools include the following:
Home Equity Loans
Free Credit Score
Student Loan Refinance
How to Use LendingTree?
Fill out one simple form online – Customers interested in a loan complete a simple form online. Or they can contact the company at any point in the process at 1-800-813-4620, in order to get answers to their questions.
Receive multiple offers – LendingTree connects their customers to multiple lenders who provide several customized loan offers based on their credit profile. Qualified applicants can receive up to five offers in just minutes. Also, customers can use LendingTree and assess loan options with no impact to their credit score.
Pick the best deal for you – Customers choose the loan offer they prefer and if needed, they can work with a real, live person to help finalize all the details.
Does LendingTree offer a VA Construction Loan?
Unfortunately, LendingTree does not offer a true VA construction loan. However, if you’re willing to do a short-term construction loan, they’ll help you convert over to a VA loan once the home is built.
LendingTree Application Process
Since LendingTree doesn’t generate the loans themselves, any specifics regarding the application process will depend on the individual lender’s requirements. However, given the breadth of its provider network and its vast experience in the industry, the company provides a high degree of flexibility for its customers who wish to explore all their lending options.
Although the specifics of qualifying for a loan through a LendingTree affiliate will differ from lender to lender, it is safe to assume that a borrower will need a FICO score of 629 or above; have a verifiable bank account, and be a US citizen. Additionally, with regard to personal loans, a debt-to-income ratio of around 36% will be required.
LendingTree is an excellent resource for those who are unsure of their personal borrowing capacity. Because the company utilizes a borrower’s personal information to ascertain which offers they are most likely to qualify for, it provides maximum flexibility for borrowers with all types of financial backgrounds.
LendingTree Cost of Loan
Generally speaking, LendingTree offers personal loans with an average APR range of around 4.69%-35.99%. Clearly, only those borrowers with good-to-excellent credit will qualify for the low end of that spectrum. All other fees will vary depending on the lender.
Origination fees typically hover around 1%-5%, but consumers would be wise to explore all their options because, in today’s market, there are plenty of lenders that waive origination fees, and others that feature no additional fees at all.
This is where the strength of LendingTree’s vast network really comes to the fore. Customers can sort through a variety of options to find the cheapest and best loan for them.
LendingTree is a marketplace for loans, so each individual lender they’re associated with will have a different reputation. However, LendingTree only works with accredited originators with proven track records in the industry.
As an online resource, LendingTree is generally well regarded due to its flexibility and unsurpassed customer satisfaction. The company can provide personal loans for basically anything, connecting prospective borrowers to its huge list of trusted and vetted affiliates, effectively providing every type of rate, term, and loan features option under the sun.
As online marketplaces go, there really is no other company that has operated so effectively for so long. Customer opinion is universally positive, and it usually centers on privacy, ease of use, and the speed of the loan approval process.
The company has an A- with the Better Business Bureau and it has far more positive reviews than negative ones, which is unusual for a company so dominant in its business sector. Also, the company’s TrustPilot score is impressive with 95% positive reviews.
How does LendingTree Make Money?
Lenders pay the company for a chance to compete for a borrower’s business.
Customer profiles are submitted up to five lenders who then provide a customized loan offer based on the borrower’s request.
LendingTree is completely free to use but of course, if a borrower chooses to proceed with a loan, they will be responsible for any processing fees, closing costs, or any other fees as normally required by the lender.
Helping Individuals to Achieve Financial Independence
In 2010, LendingTree established the LendingTree Foundation and AboutFinancialLiteracy.com – two initiatives with a shared goal of increasing financial literacy. The LendingTree Foundation is designed to provide personalized coaching to cash-stricken families and individuals on the road to financial freedom. AboutFinancialLiteracy.com will offer a multitude of tips and tools for those looking to get their finances on track.
The LendingTree Foundation will mentor these families as part of its Financial Fitness Academy, a one-on-one program that will educate them on personal finance issues, help them set financial goals, and provide them with the tools they need to stay on track.
The LendingTree Foundation is also launching the Financial Future Fund, a grant-based aid program in which the company will offer Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) for participants who have completed the mentoring program.
The IDA is a match-based savings account in which deposits will be matched by The LendingTree Foundation.
To align these efforts, AboutFinancialLiteracy.com will also offer a host of tips and tools for consumers, including MoneyRight – an online budgeting device that allows users to create a budget, manage spending, and boost their savings.
The LendingTree Foundation is actively engaged in the effort to promote financial literacy and education, and it has made a substantial commitment to this important cause.
Click here to review further information from other VA Lenders in our full VA home loan guide
J.G. Wentworth was founded in 1991 in Chesterbrook, Pennsylvania as a merchant bank specializing in transactions in the healthcare industry. In 1992, the company began to purchase New Jersey’s auto insurance deferrals from claimants who could not afford to wait 12 to 18 months for their settlements.
In 2011, J.G. Wentworth and Peachtree Financial Solutions (which also purchased structured settlements, annuities, and lottery payments) formed a new holding company, JGWPT Holdings, LLC. After the merger, however, the two companies continued to operate independently.
In 2015, J.G. Wentworth continued to expand their financial offerings by purchasing WestStar Mortgage for $54 million in common shares and cash. In the same year, the company also announced a partnership with Visa to offer prepaid credit cards to customers.
Today, the company has grown into a diversified financial services business, providing direct-to-consumer lending solutions, including home mortgages and refinancing, structured settlements, annuities, lottery payment purchasing, prepaid credit cards, and access to providers of personal loans.
In 2016, J.G. Wentworth achieved a total loan volume of $3.4 billion, and in every subsequent year since, the company has equaled or exceeded that amount. The company has also received an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.
A Tech Company that Offers Mortgages
J.G. Wentworth has a goal of making its application and lending process as tech-friendly as possible for its customers. It is their stated intention to create a smooth journey for them, to make the process as efficient and seamless as possible.
This effort begins with how the company perceives itself. J.G. Wentworth sees itself primarily as a tech company that offers mortgages and other financial services. The company is committed to expanding its technology platform to ensure a best-in-class customer experience.
When a customer applies for a J.G. Wentworth mortgage, they have access to a complete online loan application, document upload, online loan tracking, and e-signature capability. The company will even deliver pre-qualification letters via email.
In addition, J.G. Wentworth recently broadened its technology toolkit with a live web chat option and the creation of a mobile app.
Applying for a J.G. Wentworth Mortgage
When applying for a J.G. Wentworth mortgage,applicants have the option to go through the entire process online – from getting a quote through to final e-signature – or to speak to a loan agent at any time via the company’s toll-free number. The company also maintains a physical presence in 15 states, so applications can also be made in person in those states.
The online application process simplifies things with minimum documentation and a relatively quick turnaround compared to the average mortgage lender.
However, J.G. Wentworth makes no promises in regards to how quickly it can close individual loan applications.
In addition, although the company offers affordable rates, it doesn’t advertise its rates on its website. To find out loan rates, an applicant has to provide contact details and some basic financial information.
Looking for more VA Lenders? Checkout our comprehensive VA Loan Guide Here
Types of Loans
J.G. Wentworth is a viable alternative to the nation’s largest lenders for mortgages or refinancing loans. The company is a valuable option for home buyers and home owners who want a lender to offer them choice and convenience.
J.G. Wentworth’s strength lies in its wide range of loan products, with options for every type of home buyer – from low-income borrowers to people buying expensive homes; from civilians to active military personnel; from buyers in the city to buyers in rural areas.
It offers affordable fixed-rate and adjustable-rate loans, as well as almost every type of government-insured loan—such as VA, FHA, and HARP. With a wide range of loan types, rates, and terms, J.G. Wentworth offers customers from all walks of life a path to home ownership.
For fixed-rate loans, borrowers can get J.G. Wentworth mortgages with terms of 10, 15, 20, 25 or 30 years, while adjustable-rate mortgages come in 3/1, 5/1, 7/1 and 10/1 terms.
Also, low-to moderate-income earners who qualify for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac home buyer programs can get those loans through J.G. Wentworth as well.
The company also offers refinancing, with both traditional and cash-out options. However, J.G. Wentworth doesn’t offer home equity loans or lines of credit.
In addition, the minimum credit scores that J.G. Wentworth requires for its loans are fair – 620 for conventional loans, 600 for VA, and 580 for FHA loans.
The types of mortgage loans available from the company include the following:
Fixed-rate mortgages: Conventional home loan with a fixed rate that stays at the same level for the duration of the loan. Minimum credit of 620. Minimum down payment of 20%. Terms of 15, 20 or 30 years.
Adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs): Conventional home loan with a fixed interest rate for an introductory period, then a variable rate for the remaining lifetime of the loan. Minimum credit of 620. Minimum down payment of 20%. Introductory periods of 3, 5, 7, or 10 years.
Jumbo loans: Home loan for property whose price is higher than the maximum covered by a regular fixed-rate mortgage or ARM. Credit not specified, although most lenders require at least 700. Minimum down payment of 20%. Same terms apply as for conventional mortgages.
VA loans: Government-backed loans for active and former members of the Military, National Guard, and Reserve, and surviving spouses who meet qualifying guidelines. Borrowers with lower-than-average credit accepted. Low interest rates, zero down payment, no PMI, low closing costs.
FHA loans: Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans allow those with low to moderate income to borrow up to 96.5% of a home’s value. The required down payment – 3.5% of the value of the home – can come from cash, gifts or grants, making this option ideal for first-time homebuyers that do not have extensive savings.
USDA loans: The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) can provide loans to moderate-income buyers that wish to buy a home in a rural area. Depending on the home appraisal, the USDA may even finance down payments and closing costs.
HARP loans: The federal government created the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) in 2009. Through this program, people who have little equity in their home are eligible to apply for refinance loans.Through this process, borrowersreplace their current mortgage with a new mortgage, allowing them to take advantage of lower interest rates, or switch to a more suitable type of loan.
Structured Settlement Payment Purchasing
J.G. Wentworth came to prominence early in its existence for its structured settlement payment purchasing services. Customers who are receiving regular payments from a structured settlement sometimes have a need to convert the regular payments to a lump sum of cash. Perhaps they have an unexpected bill or some other significant expense, and the payments they are receiving are not adequate.
J.G. Wentworth will purchase all or part of any future structured settlement payments and provide their customer with a lump sum of cash to help them meet their goals.
Other J.G. Wentworth Services
In addition to home mortgages and structured settlements purchasing, the company also offers other products to help their customers to get the money they need, when they need it.
Prepaid Credit Cards
Through a series of award-winning television commercials, the company quickly came to the attention of the American public in its early days of existence. “It’s my money, and I need it now!” was their popular slogan, which embodied the company’s commitment to customers by purchasing their structured settlement payments so they can get cash promptly.
After the initial series of TV commercials, they also produced a new series featuring Wagnerian opera singers proclaiming, “I need cash now!”
J.G. Wentworth has won several domestic and international awards for its television advertising, including a silver Davey Award. In addition, the “Wagnerian Opera” commercial won two International Summit Awards.
VA Home Loans
Something to keep in mind when searching for your VA lender is where you’re at. If you live in a location where there aren’t a lot of veterans, your lender may not be as well-versed in VA policies.
While J.G. Wentworth has excellent reviews for helping veterans and service members with their VA loans, it’s always wise to do your own research when it comes to the VA’s loan process and regulations. Not every representative you speak with will know every detail. There’s nothing wrong with confirming information with the VA loan department (you won’t be on hold near as long as you would with the medical side of the house).