Casa Realty Group LLC

Toll Brothers Mortgage Review: The Builder’s Lender Is Hard to Beat

November 7, 2023


It’s time to check out “Toll Brothers Mortgage,” which is a subsidiary of home builder Toll Brothers.

Toll Brothers is one of the largest home builders in the United States, priding itself on being a luxury home builder.

Instead of relying on third-party lenders to provide financing to their customers, they have a built-in financing division.

This allows them to oversee the process firsthand and navigate the complexities of new construction financing.

They say they’ve got a proven track record of smooth closings, and if they can offer you a mortgage rate the other guys can’t, they could be worth looking into.

Toll Brothers Mortgage Fast Facts

  • Direct-to-consumer retail mortgage lender
  • Provides new construction lending and home purchase loans
  • Parent company is nation’s 5th largest home builder
  • Founded in 1967, headquartered in Fort Washington, PA
  • Licensed to do business in 24 states nationwide and D.C.
  • Funded nearly $2 billion in home loans last year
  • Most active in California, Pennsylvania, and Texas
  • Offers mortgage rate specials to Toll Brothers customers
  • Also operates a full-service title and insurance company

As noted, Toll Brothers is a major home builder, the fifth largest at last glance, behind only D.R. Horton, Lennar, Pulte, and NVR.

They are a publicly-traded company (NYSE:TOL) and are currently valued at around $9 billion.

The company was founded in 1967 and refers to itself as the nation’s leading builder of luxury homes.

This includes both new construction homes and quick move-in homes. The company’s dedicated mortgage division is known as Toll Brothers Mortgage Company, or TBI Mortgage for short.

They exist solely to serve Toll Brothers customers who need to finance their new home purchases, and have about 77 loan officers on staff, per the NMLS.

In 2022, the company funded a healthy $2 billion in home loans, with 20% of volume coming from the states of California and Texas, and another 9% from Pennsylvania.

The company also did a lot of business in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Nevada, and Virginia.

They are licensed to lend in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Washington.

Those purchasing a Toll Brothers home can also take advantage of in-house title, escrow, and insurance services via Toll Brothers Insurance Agency.

How to Get Started

To begin, you can visit a new home sales office or simply check out their website.

If you go online, they have a contact form and a loan officer directory that lists individual employees by state.

They can provide loan pricing and answer mortgage questions you might have about the loan process.

If you’re ready to proceed, they’ll ask you to complete a mortgage pre-qualification questionnaire and create a secure Toll Brothers account.

Within 14 days of signing a home purchase agreement, you’ll be asked to submit the loan application and upload required documents.

Their digital loan application is powered by ICE (formerly Ellie Mae). It allows borrowers to start the process from any device and complete most tasks electronically.

This includes linking accounts like pay stubs, tax returns, bank statements, along with eSigning necessary disclosures.

If approved, they’ll provide you with a loan commitment, as well as conditions needed to fund your loan.

Importantly, the loan approvals are valid through the completion of your home. And are integrated with Toll Brothers to sync with the builder process.

Since building a new construction home can take up to 12 months, their loan process may have longer timelines than a typical existing home purchase.

But they also offer quick move-in properties, in which case the process will likely only be 30 to 45 days.

Loan Programs Offered

  • Home purchase loans
  • Conventional loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
  • FHA loans
  • VA loans
  • Fixed-rate mortgages: terms ranging from 10 to 30 years
  • Adjustable-rate mortgages: initial fixed terms of 3, 5, 7, 10, or 15 years
  • Available on primary residences, second homes, and investment properties

While Toll Brothers Mortgage only offers home purchase loans (no mortgage refinances), they have a decent loan menu.

This includes all the usual offerings such as conforming loans backed by Fannie/Freddie, jumbo loans, FHA loans, and VA loans.

The only loan programs they appear to be missing are USDA loans and second mortgages, though these aren’t widely used by home buyers these days.

They’ve got a good selection of both fixed-rate mortgages and adjustable-rate mortgages, including a 10-year fixed and 15-year fixed.

With regard to the adjustable-rate loans, they’ve got the 5/6 ARM, 7/6 ARM, and even an ARM with an initial fixed term of 15 years.

And you can get an ARM if taking out an FHA loan or VA loan, which is less common.

So there’s no shortage of loan programs, and they finance primary residences, second homes and investment properties.

Toll Brothers Mortgage Rates and Fees

Like other mortgage lenders, they do not have a page dedicated to mortgage rates, nor are they publicized elsewhere.

Instead, they simply say they offer “competitive rates,” which obviously doesn’t give us a lot to go on.

However, they offer personalized financing packages and there’s a good chance they’ve got some special financing offers unique to home builders.

If you browse the Toll Brothers main website, you might see specials for certain communities.

I came across an exclusive offer of 5.99% on a 30-year fixed while rates are closer to 7.5% at the moment.

Lately, the captive mortgage lenders of home builders have been hard to beat, thanks to their big temporary and permanent mortgage rate buydowns.

Many are offering rates well below market if you buy certain homes by a specific date.

But always take the time to compare their rates and fees to outside lenders as well. You’ll never know what else is out there if you don’t put in the time to look.

LockSolid Rate Protection program

Since the home building process can take time, Toll Brothers Mortgage offers a special mortgage rate program called “LockSolid Rate Protection.”

Since It allows home buyers to lock in a mortgage rate for up to 345 days, with no cost until loan closing.

The up-front lock deposit is advanced by Toll Brothers, giving buyers peace of mind in an uncertain mortgage rate environment.

Additionally, a float down option is available on many programs. So if rates happen to fall below the rate you locked in within 30 – 45 days of closing, they can re-lock your loan at a better price.

The program is available on both fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages offered by the company.

Just keep in mind that it doesn’t always make sense to lock in a rate well ahead of time. If you have an extended time horizon, floating your mortgage rate can provide more opportunities.

It’s also generally cheaper to lock in a rate with a shorter lock period.

Toll Brothers Mortgage Reviews

There aren’t a ton of reviews for Toll Brothers Mortgage specifically, though I did come across some.

Over at Zillow, they have a pretty poor 1.36/5-star rating from about a dozen reviews. Not a big sample size, but not glowing reviews either.

Similarly, they have a 1.8/5 from another dozen mortgage reviews on Google for their Fort Washington, PA headquarters.

They have a 5-star rating on Redfin, but it’s only from three reviews. Meanwhile, their parent company has a 1.12/5 rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website from 85 reviews.

However, the company maintains an ‘A+’ rating based on customer complaint history, so they appear to handle issues that come up appropriately.

Take the time to read the customer reviews and complaints to see what the common issues are, and how you might be able to avoid them.

At the end of the day, using the builder’s lender can make sense if they offer a below-market mortgage rate.

There’s also the perception that they’re in better sync with the builder as the companies operate under the same parent.

But based on the complaints, this isn’t always the case. So be sure to shop around and get quotes from other mortgage companies and some independent mortgage brokers too.

Even if you do decide to use Toll Brothers Mortgage, you can use those other quotes to negotiate a better deal.

Toll Brothers Mortgage Pros and Cons

The Good Stuff

  • Can apply for a home loan online
  • Offer a digital, mostly paperless application powered by ICE
  • Loan approvals good through completion of your home
  • May offer special financing incentives to Toll Brothers customers
  • Lots of loan programs to choose from including ARMs
  • LockSolid Rate Protection program
  • A+ BBB rating
  • Mortgage glossary and mortgage calculator online

The Maybe Not

  • Only licensed in a handful of states where they build homes
  • Poor customer reviews
  • Do not offer USDA loans or second mortgages
  • Do not offer mortgage refinances

(photo: Montgomery County Planning Commission)



Source link

Posted in Real Estate
Write a comment