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Navy Federal Credit Union mortgage review

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finder.com’s rating: 3.6 / 5.0

★★★★★

The country’s largest credit union offers strong benefits for the military, but approvals can be slow.

If you’re in the military now or have been in the past, Navy Federal could be a strong option to consider for your home loan needs. It offers a wide array of products and mortgages with 0% down and no PMI. Getting these benefits can take time though, and some say the approval process can be slow.

Details

Loan types Conventional, Refinance, Jumbo, FHA, VA, USDA
Origination fee Up to 1%
Other fees No underwriting, document, or application fees, but "Choice" line of loans can require a 1% origination fee and 1.75% funding fees (Can be waived with an increase of interest rate)
Available States Available in all states

Pros

  • Options for 0% down and no PMI
  • Military service member benefits
  • Fewer fees on certain mortgages
  • Rate match guarantee

Cons

  • Membership required
  • Watch out for customer reviews
Member reviews for Navy Federal are generally positive. Most say they felt taken care of and understood by the company. Others say they received loans through Navy Federal that they wouldn’t have been approved for elsewhere.

Most negative reviews focus on poor customer service experiences and slow responses when dealing with the loan department.

What types of loans does Navy Federal Credit Union offer?

Navy Federal Credit Union offers conventional, jumbo and government-backed home loan options to its members.

  • Conventional. Navy Federal offers 10- to 30-year conventional fixed and adjustable-rate mortgages. These mortgages only require 5% down for fixed, 0% to 10% for adjustable and do not require private mortgage insurance (PMI).
  • FHA. As with standard FHA loans, you’ll need to put 3.5% down and PMI is required.
  • VA. Prominently featured by Navy Federal. These Department of Veterans Affairs-backed loans offer exclusive mortgage benefits to eligible service members, veterans and their spouses.
  • USDA. Navy Federal has Military Choice and Homeowners Choice loan programs. These are mortgage loans that require $0 down and allow you to finance the entire home purchase. If you’re a member and have not been able to save enough for a typical down payment, this may be a good option for you. Also, there is no PMI required on these types of loans, which is rare.
  • Jumbo. Loans over $726,525 in Alaska and Hawaii or over $484,350 elsewhere are considered jumbo loans. These are available through Navy Federal at a higher interest rate and APR.

Other loans offered by Navy Federal

Navy Federal offers additional loans that members can take advantage of if they already own a home.

  • Refinancing. You may get a better rate or lower payments than your current mortgage through a new loan with Navy Federal.
  • Second-home financing. Get special financing for a vacation property at least 50 miles from your current home.
  • Investment property loans. Add real estate to your current investment portfolio.

Navy Federal doesn’t appear to charge the majority of fees other banks and lenders might.

You won’t pay a fee for underwriting, documents or applying for most loans. An exception is the 100% financing, 0% down “Choice” line of loans — which require a 1% origination fee and 1.75% funding fee. These fees are waived by agreeing to pay 0.25% more on the interest rate.

Requirements

Eligible applicants must meet standard mortgage requirements that include a low debt-to-income ratio and steady employment.

Other requirements include:

  • Navy Federal Credit Union member
  • Credit score of 580 or higher, depending on loan type; 740 or higher for strongest rates

Documentation

You’ll submit standard personal and financial details when applying for a loan:

  • Date of birth and Social Security number
  • Navy Federal Share Savings account number
  • Two-year address history
  • Two-year work history
  • Gross monthly and other income
  • Deposit accounts and asset information
  • Current tax, homeowners/condo dues, insurance and lien information

How to get a home loan with Navy Federal Credit Union

You must first become a member of the Navy Federal Credit Union to apply online:

  1. Visit Navy Federal Credit Union’s website, hover over Loans & Credit Cards and select Mortgages.
  2. Click your preferred product and click Apply Now.
  3. Log in to your NFCU account or follow the prompts to become a member.
  4. Input your personal and financial details, confirm and submit your application.

What are the membership requirements for NFCU?

Navy Federal Credit Union membership is open to:

  • Active duty, retired and veterans of the military
  • Military families, including parents, grandparents, spouses, siblings, children and grandchildren
  • Department of Defense civilians, including retirees

Pros and cons of Navy Federal Credit Union

Pros

  • Select loans require 0% down and no PMI
  • Special benefits for qualifying military service members
  • Fewer fees on select mortgages than other companies
  • Rate match guarantee: If you find a better rate with another lender, Navy Federal will match it. If it can’t, it’ll give you $1,000 after you close with the competing lender.

Cons

  • Requires NFCU membership
  • Online complaints relate a long approval process and poor support

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More about Navy Federal Credit Union

Based in Vienna, Virginia, Navy Federal Credit Union began with seven members in 1933 and has since grown to serve more than 8 million members. It manages more than $100 billion in assets and is the largest credit union in the United States by number of members and size of assets.

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Expert review

Kelly Larson

Review by


Kelly Larson is an editor at Finder, where he currently spearheads the effort to make office sloths a thing. Prior to that all-important role, he led editorial newsrooms in the creation of award-winning content as a managing editor in the digital space.

Expert review

Navy Federal Credit Union understands the situations of military personnel and allows them to take advantage of the rewards that come from military service when buying a home. But if you’re looking for a loan that doesn’t require membership, compare your other mortgage options to find the right fit.

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