We recommend the best products through an independent review process, and advertisers do not influence our picks. We may receive compensation if you visit partners we recommend. Read our advertiser disclosure for more info.
Though SWBC offers a good variety of loan options, it’s hard to find definitive information about rates and other details unless you contact a local loan officer directly.
- Pros & Cons
- Key Takeaways
- Company Overview
Loans for those with fair credit
Wide range of loans available
Fast closing times
In-person and online applications offered
Not available nationwide
Rates and terms not readily available on website
No known first-time homebuyer benefits available
- SWBC offers mortgages for those with fair credit.
- SWBC typically charges a flat underwriting fee.
- SWBC offers a fully digital application process powered by Blend.
Founded in 1988, SWBC is headquartered in San Antonio, Texas. Since launching more than 30 years ago, the lender has grown its presence in 40 states and does all of its loan processing—including underwriting and closing—in-house.
SWBC offers in-person services with their loan officers, or you can go through the application process completely online. According to customer service, the company typically takes 21 days to close on mortgage loans.
- Minimum Credit Score 600
- Maximum Debt-to-Income Ratio 50%
- Minimum Down Payment 3%
- Average Days to Closing 21
SWBC, short for Southwest Business Corporation, offers a variety of mortgage loan types including conventional, FHA, VA, USDA, Jumbo—both conforming and nonconforming—and refinancing. In most cases, applicants will need a minimum credit score of 600 and a maximum debt-to-income ratio of 50% to qualify for a conventional loan. However, requirements may be different for some government-backed mortgages.
Borrowers with fair credit scores may have a hard time qualifying with many lenders, but SWBC may be a good fit thanks to its relatively low requirements.
- Loans for those with fair credit: SWBC offers mortgages to those with credit scores as low as 600.
- Wide range of loans available: Except for interest-only loans, SWBC offers most loan types, including FHA, VA, and USDA loans.
- Fast closing times: The mortgage lender claims to close loans as fast as 21 days.
- In-person and online applications offered: Applicants can either work with a loan officer in person or go through the entire process completely online.
Just because the lender says it usually takes 21 days to close doesn’t mean your mortgage will close that quickly. There are many factors involved in how long it takes to close, including how soon you provide the requested information and documentation.
- Not available nationwide: SWBC isn’t offered in Connecticut, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, or Wyoming.
- Rates and terms not readily available: There isn’t much information available on SWBC’s website, so you’ll have to speak with a loan officer in your area to find out what you may qualify for.
- No first-time homebuyer benefits available: Applicants can’t access popular homebuyer programs such as HomeReady and HomePossible.
Types of Mortgage Loans Offered by SWBC
SWB offers the following types of mortgage loans:
- Conventional loan: Borrowers need a 600 minimum credit score and a maximum debt-to-income (DTI) ratio of 50%, and they must put down at least 2% to qualify for a loan. SWBC charges a flat origination fee of $1,095, not including other closing costs.
- FHA loan: SWBC requires borrowers to put down at least 3.5% as their down payment and doesn’t disclose other requirements, such as minimum credit score or maximum DTI.
- VA loan: Applicants don’t need to put a down payment on a VA loan, and there are no minimum credit requirements.
- USDA loan: There is no down payment required for a USDA loan; contact a loan officer near you for more details and to find out if you’re eligible.
- Jumbo loan: SWBC offers jumbo loans up to $3 million; the lender requires borrowers to put down at least 10% and to have a maximum DTI of 43%.
Want to see what other lenders have to offer? See our list of the best mortgage lenders for more options.
SWBC Features and Benefits
SWBC offers the following features for borrowers:
- Options for the self-employed: Typically, it may be tough for those who are self-employed to qualify for a loan on their own, but SWBC offers loan options to help self-employed borrowers qualify. Contact a loan officer for more details.
- Pre-qualification or pre-approval available: You can find out what rates and terms you may qualify for and be able to show buyers you’re a more serious homebuyer.
- Fully online application process: SWBC uses an application called Blend where applicants can apply and submit necessary documentation online to help make the process seamless.
How to Apply for an SWBC Loan
If you’re interested in applying for a mortgage through SWBC, here’s how:
- Head to the SWBC website and click on “Apply Now” at the top of the home screen.
- Enter your email address and a password to create an account.
- You’ll be prompted to enter personal details such as your name, assets, income, and property information.
- Answer questions to provide details about your citizenship status and demographic, and complete other disclosures.
- Submit the application and you’ll be contacted by a loan officer about the next steps, which could include uploading the requested documents.
If you want to know more about getting pre-approved for a mortgage or aren’t ready to submit an application, you can head to SWBC’s website and search for a loan officer by heading to “Find a Pro.” From there, you’ll find a list of licensed offers with names and contact information.
SWBC offers several contact options depending on whether you’re an existing customer or not. Those who are inquiring about loans can contact SWBC by sending a message through the website, or by finding a loan officer nearby—each officer will have their own business hours.
For existing customers or those who have applications in progress, you can either call your loan officer or log in to your online account and send a secure message.
SWBC appears to have mixed reviews from customers, with comments mostly to do with the customer service applicants have received. The lender also has three regulatory actions against it, with the most recent being in 2019 over interest charges.
In Investopedia’s survey of 1,195 mortgage customers, however, SWBC came in an impressive fifth place for customer satisfaction, out of 45 mortgage lenders.
Customers can make payments by check or online transfers, and they can receive paper statements if they wish. SWBC also allows customers to manage their accounts through a secure online portal.
Here are a few lenders you may want to consider aside from SWBC.
|Minimum Credit Score||600 (conventional)||500 (FHA loans); others not disclosed||620 (conventional)|
|First-Time Homebuyer Programs||No||Not disclosed||Yes|
|Rates||Not disclosed||Not disclosed||Not disclosed|
|Fees||$1,095 closing fee||Not disclosed||Not disclosed|
|Types of Loans||Conventional, VA, FHA, VA, USDA, Jumbo, Refinance||Conventional, VA, FHA, Jumbo, Refinance||Conventional, VA, FHA, VA, USDA, Jumbo, Refinance|
|Average Time to Closing||21 days||Not disclosed||30–45 days|
When it comes to finding the best home loan for your needs, shopping around is a smart move. Here are some criteria you should look at when comparing lenders:
- APR: The APR, or annual percentage rate, is a good way to compare the cost of borrowing because it includes the interest rates and fees you’ll be paying.
- First-time home buyer benefits: Some mortgage lenders offer programs such as HomeReady, where first-time home buyers can qualify while putting down a lower down payment.
- Down payment requirements: Lenders may set their minimum down payment amounts differently, so find one with requirements you can afford.
- Discounts: Lenders may offer discounts, like mortgage points, where you typically pay 1% of your loan amount to lower interest rates by a fraction of a percent.
- Loan terms: Depending on your needs, lenders may be able to work with your desired term, though most offer 30- and 15-year mortgages.
- Penalties: Although most lenders don’t charge prepayment fees, it’s worth checking to see if you’ll be charged for paying down your mortgage faster.
SWBC is a great fit for those who have fair credit and may not have a lot of funds to make a large down payment. Given the variety of loan options available, most borrowers could find the right fit for them with this lender. Plus, working with a dedicated loan officer, whether online or in person, can help make the application process smoother and less overwhelming.
However, those not residing in states where SWBC is licensed are out of luck. And first-time homebuyers may not get access to certain programs through SWBC. Since rates aren’t readily available on their website, it’s hard to tell whether their rates are considered competitive compared to other mortgage lenders until you go through the pre-qualification process.
If you’re a first-time homebuyer or you live in one of the states SWBC doesn’t service, take a look at our picks for the best mortgage lenders today.
Methodology: How We Review the Best Mortgage Lenders
Investopedia is dedicated to providing consumers with unbiased, comprehensive reviews of mortgage lenders. We rated 45 mortgage lenders and collected nearly 1,500 data points, including information about the following:
- Quality of service (customer experience, online applications, benefits/grants, etc.)
- Operational features (state licensing coverage, number of loan officers, etc.)
- Loan types offered (fixed-rate, FHA, USDA, etc.)
- Accessibility (days to closing, minimum debt-to-income ratio, etc.)
We also conducted a survey of 1,195 mortgage borrowers to learn about the most important features from a customer perspective and how satisfied customers are with various lenders. Mortgage lenders were rated objectively in the categories above to help readers make informed decisions about home loans.
Read more in our full mortgage lender review methodology.