• Guaranteed Rate has averaged about 500 leads per day for its new Digital Mortgage product.
  • The online mortgage loan application process can take a consumer from application to loan approval in about 20 minutes.
  • Since the official release in July. more than 15,000 people have gone to the website to input their information.

If you have watched any television lately, you may have seen “Extreme Home Makeover” host and home improvement expert Ty Pennington stumping for Guaranteed Rate in commercials, touting the mortgage lender and technology company’s “low, low mortgage rates.”

Those ads seem to have paid off for Guaranteed Rate, which has averaged about 500 leads per day for its new Digital Mortgage product, an online mortgage loan application process that can take a consumer from application to loan approval in about 20 minutes — instead of the few days it may take to go through a paper-heavy process with a traditional loan officer.

Guaranteed Rate's digital mortgage

“We are at a point now with technology where a consumer can go on and get a customized, real-time mortgage loan quote, just as if a loan officer were going to do it,” said Victor Ciardelli, president and CEO of Guaranteed Rate. “This is a revolutionary change for the mortgage industry, as borrowers are now able to take charge of the process and complete each step of the Digital Mortgage online at their own pace.”

Digital Mortgage is a no-obligation online application process that consumers can use to research purchase or refinance mortgage loan rates. After completing the application, the consumer is given free credit scores from all three major credit bureaus.

From there, he can securely upload and digitally sign all of his loan documents and get an online approval with Freddie Mac’s Loan Prospector underwriting engine — at no cost. The consumer can use the loan originator of his choice, or Guaranteed Rate will connect him with one.

The entire process is secure, enabled by encrypted cloud storage from Box and e-signature technology from DocuSign.

Digital Mortgage had a soft launch in June and officially released the first week of July. Since then, more than 15,000 people have gone to the website to input their information, Ciardelli said.

“I’m hearing stories all the time about a 65-year-old grandmother who went on the website and loved being able to get a loan approval all by herself,” Ciardelli said.

“A lot of people want to go out and do this themselves, and agents absolutely love it because it is proving to be a fantastic resource for consumers to get loan approvals 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This way they know they are not wasting time by going out and showing people houses.”

Headquartered in Chicago with approximately 175 offices across the country, Guaranteed Rate is ranked as the eighth-largest retail mortgage lender in the U.S. The company was founded 15 years ago, “back in the wild, Wild West days when people were playing a lot of games with consumer rates and fees,” Ciardelli said, and built with the goal of giving borrowers total transparency on prices with fixed fees and using technology to increase efficiencies for consumers.

Guaranteed Rate expects to fund $20 billion in mortgage loans this year, Ciardelli said.

Email Amy Swinderman.

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