Wintrust Mortgage Review | The Ascent

Top perks

Wide variety of loan options

Wintrust Mortgage offers a wide variety of mortgage loans. In addition to standard conventional mortgages, Wintrust offers FHA, USDA, and VA loans. The lender also offers special first-time home buyer programs, construction loans, investment property loans, jumbo and super-jumbo loans, and more.

Construction-to-permanent loans

Wintrust offers construction loans that are designed to turn into a traditional mortgage when the home is completed. These loans are set up as adjustable-rate, interest-only loans until the project is completed, and they can be made in amounts of up to $5 million with as little as 15% down. This can be a very advantageous arrangement as opposed to getting a construction loan and then having to go through the application process all over again when the home is move-in ready.

Loans in all 50 states

Wintrust is a regional financial institution, with branches concentrated in the Illinois and Wisconsin markets, though it has a physical presence in the Los Angeles area as well. However, Wintrust Mortgage lends in all 50 states and originates more than $4 billion in annual loan volume, making it one of the larger bank-owned mortgage originators in the U.S.

Down payment assistance

For customers buying homes in the Wisconsin or Illinois markets, Wintrust offers a number of down payment assistance programs that can provide grants ranging from $3,000 to $6,000 to help borrowers come up with the funds needed to close on their homes.

Jumbo and interest-only loans

Many lenders have pumped the brakes on high-balance loans in recent years, but Wintrust still offers jumbo and super-jumbo loans. They even offer interest-only jumbo loans for buyers who really want to get as much house as their budget allows.

What could be improved

Transparency

Wintrust’s website is very light on details when it comes to loan qualifications and the loan programs it offers. For example, regarding mortgage types, the site mentions, “We offer a number of loan programs that other mortgage lenders can’t,” but it doesn’t go into detail about what these programs are. There’s also nothing discussed about down payment requirements or credit score thresholds. And finally, while Wintrust’s interest rate calculator provides ballpark estimates on the interest rates borrowers can expect, the bank doesn’t publish its current interest rates like some of its competitors do. To be fair, Wintrust makes it easy to contact a loan officer, but many people don’t want the added step of having to track down information that many originators provide easily.

Ability to get personalized quotes online

Some of Wintrust’s competitors let prospective borrowers get customized rate quotes online, and some even allow it without a hard credit pull. Wintrust doesn’t. While the website allows users to get a general idea of the rates they can expect based on home price, down payment, and their approximate credit tier, they aren’t actual loan offers. To get your rate, you’ll need to apply and work with one of Wintrust’s loan officers.

Geographic diversification

Wintrust has a branch network of about 175 locations, but they are concentrated in Illinois, Wisconsin, and California. If getting in-person help is important to you, and you don’t live in one of these states, you might be better off looking elsewhere. Most of the assistance programs and unique loan options Wintrust offers are specific to these locations as well.

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