Sebonic Financial review: A mortgage lender with a good variety of loans

Father at home with daughter, looking up Sebonic Financial mortgages on his cellphoneImage: Father at home with daughter, looking up Sebonic Financial mortgages on his cellphone

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Updated January 25, 2021

This date may not reflect recent changes in individual terms.

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Written by: Taylor Medine

Sebonic Financial loans at a glance

  • Conventional loans: Yes
  • FHA loans: Yes
  • VA loans: Yes
  • Refinancing: Yes
  • Jumbo loan: Yes
  • Adjustable rates: Yes (10/1 ARM, 7/1 ARM, 5/1 ARM)
  • Fixed rates: Yes (terms unclear from website)

Sebonic Financial is an online lender that’s part of Cardinal Financial Company, a nationwide lender founded in 1987 and based in Charlotte, North Carolina. The company has developed a proprietary online lending platform called Octane that the company says it created to make applying for a mortgage easier.

Using Octane, borrowers can review rates, sign documents and get loan status updates in real-time. While the Sebonic Financial mortgage application can be done entirely online, the first step of loan shopping (checking rates) does require a phone call. Prospective borrowers have to speak with a loan specialist to get a rate quote.

Pros

  • Loans for home purchases and refinances
  • Good variety of mortgage types offered
  • Transparency in eligibility requirements
  • Online home loan application

Cons

  • Interest rates not listed on its website
  • No home equity loans or HELOCs available
  • Must get in contact with a loan specialist to get rate quotes

5 things to know about a Sebonic Financial mortgage loan

1. Loans can be used for a new purchase or refinance

Sebonic Financial offers loans for both home purchases and refinances. Depending on how much equity you have in your home, you also may be able to refinance your existing loan for more than what you owe and use the difference for another financial goal with a cash-out refinance.

2. Good variety of mortgage types offered

Sebonic Financial has a pretty good selection of mortgage loans, including conventional loans, FHA loans, VA loans, USDA loans and jumbo loans. That’s helpful because it means Sebonic can accommodate a range of borrowers, from first-time homebuyers to people looking for a large home loan.

Plus, Sebonic offers mortgages for a range of property types, including single-family homes, townhomes, condos, multi-family and manufactured homes. People looking to buy a second home or rental property might be able to secure financing through Sebonic as well.

3. Eligibility requirements are posted on the website

Sebonic’s website shares minimum eligibility requirements for certain loan types. For example, it says the minimum credit scores for a conventional loan are 620 and credit scores as low as 550 may be accepted for an FHA loan.

If you’re wondering if you may qualify, it’s a good place to start and can take some of the mystery out of the lending process.

4. You have to call to check rates

Checking your potential rate with Sebonic isn’t as easy as searching the website. You’ll have to submit an online inquiry and connect with a loan officer to review rates.

But if you decide to move forward with a loan application, the rest of the application process — including submitting your financial documents and signing the contract — can be done online.

If you prefer some guidance during the mortgage process, talking to a loan rep may be helpful. But if you prefer an all-digital experience, you’ll have to look elsewhere.

5. Home equity products aren’t offered

Sebonic Financial doesn’t offer home equity loans or home equity lines of credit, known as HELOCs. If you want to dip into home equity without refinancing to consolidate your credit card debt or pay for home renovations, you’ll have to shop with other lenders.

Who is a Sebonic Financial loan good for?

Since Sebonic Financial offers jumbo loans and financing for second homes or rental properties, it’s a good option for people looking for a large home, vacation home or real estate investment. Interest-only adjustable-rate mortgage, or ARM, options are available for jumbo loans, and loan amounts reach up to $3 million.

Sebonic’s selection of government-backed loans can also help if you’re a first-time homebuyer. VA loans and USDA loans allow qualified borrowers to put zero money down. FHA loans may require as little as 3.5% for a down payment. The Sebonic website also has a purchase and refinance calculator that can help you figure out how much home you can afford and how much you could potentially save from a refinance.

When it’s time to apply, people who prefer to avoid calls and physical documents will likely appreciate the Octane process. That’s because you can review closing costs and terms within the loan platform, which can cut down on paperwork. Plus, e-signing means you won’t have to take a trip to an office.

How to apply for a Sebonic Financial mortgage

Whether you’re planning to buy a home or refinance your current mortgage with Sebonic Financial, the first step is requesting an online quote. This online form asks financial questions, such as the size of your down payment and where your credit stands. A loan officer will reach out to you by phone.

Afterward, Sebonic says it has simplified the loan application process to minimize the phone calls you’ll have to make to the company. Its home loan platform will display loan details and a list of documents that the company needs from you to approve the loan, and you can sign remotely.

Loan eligibility requirements vary by loan type. Low- and moderate-income applicants who live in rural areas might qualify for the USDA loan. Sebonic Financial looks for a minimum credit score of 620 for conventional loans. For FHA loans, you may be able to qualify with credit scores as low as 550.

Not sure if Sebonic Financial is right for you? Consider these alternatives.

If you’re shopping for a mortgage, you have a window of time where multiple credit inquiries by lenders are only counted as one for your credit scores. You typically have 14 days — though it could be longer depending on the scoring model.

  • Better Mortgage: Better Mortgage is an online lender offering home financing for new purchases and refinances with no lender fees or commissions, and you can review rates on its website.
  • New American Funding: New American Funding offers a variety of loan terms, and it posts daily rates on its website.

About the author: Taylor Medine is an indie author and professional writer who covers personal finance topics for various media outlets. Her work has been featured on websites such as FinanceBuzz, Lending… Read more.