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USAA bank mortgage review

Last updated:  

finder.com’s rating: 3.5 / 5.0

★★★★★

Custom loans for current and former military members and their families.

USAA serves military members and their families with a diverse arsenal of mortgage options. But customer reviews have fallen in the last few years.

Details

Loan types Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, VA
Minimum credit 620
Minimum down payment 0%
Origination fee 0.5%
Other fees None

Pros

  • Highly-rated customer service
  • Specialized help for military members
  • Simplified mortgage process

Cons

  • Available only to former & current members of the military and their families
USAA home mortgages is not accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB), where it earns a B- rating. And with more than 430 reviews left on the site, it earns just over 1/5 stars. Customers complain of paperwork beyond what they expected and poor communication and transparency.

On Trustpilot, USAA gets 2/5 stars, with some customers praising its excellent customer service and low fees while others complain of fraudulent account activity and higher APRs than promised. Though these reviews are for USAA as a whole, and not necessarily its mortgage products.

For unfiltered feedback, check out USAA’s Member Community online. USAA responds to most inquiries on the forum, even forwarding negative reviews to more senior departments to sort out any issues.

What types of loans does USAA offer?

USAA offers several home loan options, specializing in VA loans. You can apply for the following types of mortgages if you’re a member of USAA:

Conventional

USAA offers both 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages.

Jumbo

USAA offers jumbo loans of up to $3 million. You can choose from a conventional or VA jumbo loan.

First-time homebuyer

USAA advertises this loan option as an alternative to an FHA loan. It’s available with as little as 3% down to qualifying homebuyers who haven’t owned a home in the last three years.

VA

USAA focuses on VA loans, offering conventional and jumbo VA loans to active duty military, veterans and certain spouses.

Other loan types

  • Refinance. Qualifying homeowners can refinance their current loans with USAA to get lower rates or a different term.
  • Vacation or investment homes. USAA offers mortgages to buy or refinance vacation or investment homes.

USAA’s fees

USAA doesn’t charge underwriting, documentation or application fees. It also doesn’t charge prepayment penalties, meaning that you can pay off your loan early without any fines or fees.

But you will be responsible for a 1% origination fee on your mortgage.

Requirements

The number one requirement to qualify for a loan with USAA is membership in the organization. In order join USAA, you must be:

  • Currently serving in the US Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines, Navy, National Guard or Reserves.
  • Former military who have retired or separated from the US military with an honorable discharge.
  • Family, including widows, widowers and un-remarried former spouses of USAA members who had USAA auto or property insurance while married and individuals whose parents have or had USAA auto or property insurance.
  • Cadets or midshipmen at US service academies, in advanced ROTC or on ROTC scholarship, plus officer candidates within 24 months of commissioning.

Financial factors that USAA considers when determining if you qualify for a loan include debt-to-income ratio, income and a minimum credit score of 620.

VA loan requirements

To be eligible for a VA loan, you must have served a minimum of 90 days during wartime, 181 days in peacetime or six years in the National Guard or Reserves. These loans are also open to surviving spouses.

Documentation

Be prepared to supply:

  • Bank statements
  • Tax returns
  • Income statements, such as pay stubs or award letters.
  • Other supporting documents as requested.

How to get a home loan with USAA

Pros and cons of USAA

Pros

  • Solid customer service. USAA gets strong reviews from its customers.
  • Specialized help for military members. USAA offers VA loans, insurance, investments and bank accounts to qualifying military members, veterans and family.
  • Simplified mortgage process. A streamlined process makes home buying less stressful.

Cons

  • Members only. Loans with USAA are only available to former and current members of the military and their families.

Compare to other lenders

Name Product Min. credit score State availability Loans offered
620
Not available in: HI, NY
Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, HELOC, FHA, VA, USDA, Reverse
Loan officers work with you to find the right mortgage to fit your lifestyle and budget.
620
Not available in: HI, MA, NV, NY, ND, UT
Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA
Explore financing options and home shopping services all on the same website.
620
Available in all states
Purchase, Refinance, Home Equity, HELOC, Jumbo, Reverse, FHA, VA, USDA
Connect with vetted home loan lenders quickly through this online marketplace.
620
Not available in: AZ, HI, IN, MO, NV, NY, RI, UT, WA, WV
Conventional, Refinance, Jumbo, Home Equiity, FHA, VA, USDA
Get personalized rates in minutes and then choose a home loan offer from several top online lenders.
620
Available in all states
Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA
Flexible options, fast approvals and support online backed by a trusted brand.
620
Available in all states
Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, FHA
A subsidiary of CIT Group, CIT Bank is a direct lender that offers a variety of mortgage loan options.
620
Available in all states
Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, FHA, VA, USDA
Streamline your mortgage from quote to final payment — all from your computer or phone.
620
Available in all states
Purchase, Refinance, Jumbo, HELOC, FHA, VA, USDA
A national lender that offers the full selection of mortgage products.

Compare up to 4 providers

What is USAA?

Founded in 1922, USAA offers loans, banking products, investments and insurance to the military and their families.

But customer reviews of the bank have been falling recently. While it was once praised for its customer service, it now gets 2/5 stars on Trustpilot and just over 1/5 stars from the BBB.

Bottom line

USAA could be an affordable option for veterans and current military looking for a straightforward mortgage backed by solid customer service. Average rates are balanced by strong security measures and flexibility during the mortgage process. But if you’re not sold, compare other mortgage lenders to find one that’s the right fit.

Frequently asked questions

Home loans ratings

★★★★★ — Excellent

★★★★★ — Good

★★★★★ — Average

★★★★★ — Subpar

★★★★★ — Poor

We analyze top home loan providers and rate them one to five stars based on factors that are most important to you. These factors include: rates and fees, product selection and borrower experience.

Read the full methodology of how we rate home loan providers.

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