Academy Mortgage Review: A family-owned company with a broad offering

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Academy Mortgage loans at a glance

  • Conventional loans: Yes
  • FHA loans: Yes
  • VA loans: Yes
  • Refinancing: Yes
  • Jumbo loan: Yes
  • Adjustable rates: Yes
  • Fixed rates: Yes (10-, 15-, 20-, 25- and 30-year terms)

Academy Mortgage is a family-owned mortgage company based in Draper, Utah, which was founded in 1988. Academy is a direct lender, meaning it handles all of its underwriting and funding in house. It offers both new purchase mortgages and refinance loans, originating more than $15 billion in loans in 2020.

Pros

  • Loan offices across the country
  • May be able to connect you with down payment assistance
  • Specialty loans available

Cons

  • You must speak with a loan officer before applying
  • No current rates posted online
  • Mortgages not available in New York

5 things to know about an Academy mortgage loan

1. Loan offices across the country

Though Academy Mortgage is based in Utah, it has more than 200 offices across the country, from California to Maine. Depending on the location, you may be able to find someone local who understands your real estate market and can help you in person.

2. May be able to connect you with down payment assistance

Academy Mortgage loan officers might be able to provide you with information about down payment assistance and other state housing programs. They may also be able to help you navigate the system if you’re a low- to moderate-income homebuyer who qualifies for assistance.

3. Specialty loans available

Academy Mortgage has a wide range of mortgage products, including government-backed loans such as FHA and USDA mortgages. The company also offers renovation loans for people buying fixer-uppers, and reverse mortgages for qualifying seniors looking to tap their home equity.

4. You must speak with a loan officer before applying

Academy Mortgage doesn’t allow you to fill out a loan application online right away. You’ll first need to send in your contact information, and a loan officer will then reach out to you. This can be frustrating if you’re looking for a fast online prequalification.

5. No current rates posted

While Academy Mortgage does have a handy tool to help you choose a mortgage, the company doesn’t post current mortgage rates online. You won’t be able to find out if its rates are in the right ballpark for you without contacting a loan officer.

6. Mortgages not available in New York

Academy Mortgage is licensed to lend in 49 states and Washington, D.C. But if you’re in New York, you’ll need to look elsewhere.

Who is an Academy Mortgage loan good for?

Academy Mortgage could be a good option for a first-time homebuyer or someone looking for personal service while buying a home. The company handles all of its loan processing, underwriting and funding locally and markets its values and transparency.

How to apply for an Academy mortgage

Applying for a loan with Academy Mortgage starts with filling out a short form online with your contact information. A loan officer will then contact you with details on how to proceed. You can also call a branch in your area or contact an Academy Mortgage team member directly.

Academy Mortgage uses a mobile app called My Mortgage that you can use to get preapproved for a loan, securely upload documents, check on the status of your application or contact your loan officer. You can also create an account online.

Using the app, you’ll start by filling out a preapproval application for a mortgage, which Academy says takes several minutes. Then you’ll sign disclosures and upload documents through the app.

The company doesn’t give details on any restrictions or minimum eligibility requirements online, but a loan officer will be able to help you figure out what options are available to you.

Not sure if Academy Mortgage is right for you? Consider these alternatives.

If you want to compare rates with several lenders or your application is denied, keep in mind that you have a window of time where multiple hard credit inquiries by lenders only count as one for your credit scores. You typically have 14 days — though it could be longer depending on the scoring model.

  • Better Mortgage: If you’re looking for a more streamlined experience without going through a loan officer, Better offers a fully online mortgage application and no lender fees.
  • Wells Fargo: If you’d like to check on current interest rates before moving forward, Wells Fargo posts its mortgage rates online daily and has a substantial amount of information available online.

About the author: Andrew Dunn is a veteran journalist with more than a decade of experience as a reporter and editor at North Carolina news organizations, including the Charlotte Observer and the StarNews… Read more.