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SunTrust Mortgage Rates Review | Good Financial Cents

SunTrust was founded in 1891 in Atlanta, GA. It operates over 1,400 bank branches and over 2,000 ATMs across several southeastern U.S. states. Although this bank performs financial services like credit card approvals, trusts, and deposits; mortgage lending is one of their primary actions.

SunTrust offers a wide range of home mortgage products, such as fixed-rate, adjustable-rate, FHA, VA, jumbo, USDA, doctor, Agency Plus, and Agency Affordable mortgages.

SunTrust Mortgage Facts

  • Services 11 states in the southeast U.S., as well as the District of Columbia
  • Offers plenty of mortgage options, such as Agency Affordable, Agency Plus, VA, FHA, USDA, and jumbo mortgages, as well as conforming fixed- and adjustable-rate loans
  • Provides fair rates and flexible plans for homebuyers who cannot pay 20 percent down on their homes
  • As of March 31, 2018, SunTrust had $199 billion in assets
  • Though SunTrust has been involved in several scandals, it has paid millions of dollars in relief funds to borrowers
  • As a corporation, SunTrust has won many awards for its workplace inclusion efforts

Overall

SunTrust Bank was founded in 1891, servicing several states in the southeastern U.S. Throughout its years of business, it has focused its attention on Americans who cannot afford to put 20 percent down on their home.

To that end, it offers plenty of affordable, flexible loan programs that can accommodate a variety of budgets and lifestyles.

SunTrust is more relaxed than other banks in requesting borrowers’ debt-to-income and credit scores, but these factors likely determine the loan prices. SunTrust has faced legal troubles for failing to comply with standards on federally backed mortgages, and this has resulted in many negative reviews.

The bank has an overall JD Power rating of two out of five stars and a Consumer Affairs rating of one out of five stars.

Current Mortgage Rates

SunTrust Loan Specifics

SunTrust offers many types of home mortgages, from conforming loans to less traditional options. This lender is known for accommodating homebuyers who cannot afford to pay 20 percent down on their new home.

SunTrust Fixed-Rate Loans

With fixed-rate loans, interest rates stay the same throughout the loan’s lifetime. Fixed-rate mortgages are ideal for homebuyers who plan on staying in the home for several years. People with secure finances who want predictable rates might want to take out a fixed-rate mortgage, especially if interest rates are low when they go to purchase it.

SunTrust Adjustable-Rate Loans

SunTrust offers adjustable-rate mortgages for designated time periods of 5, 7, or 10 years. These types of loans have low initial interest rates that can rise and fall with market trends after the fixed period of 5, 7, or 10 years.

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Many mortgage lenders don’t allow the loan costs to increase too much, as they might include an interest rate cap. These mortgages are excellent for homebuyers that don’t plan to stay very long on the property and have plans of selling in the near future, before the fixed interest rate period ends.

SunTrust Jumbo Loans

SunTrust offers jumbo loans for homebuyers looking to take out larger mortgage amounts than the typical Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae limits. As of 2018, these limits are $453,100 across the U.S., barring Alaska, Guam, Hawaii, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, whose limit is $679, 650.

Jumbo mortgages are helpful for buyers who feel comfortable paying larger monthly payments to cover their high-value properties. They can feature either adjustable or fixed rates.

SunTrust FHA Mortgage Loans

 As part of its FHA mortgage loans for buyers who need extra help, SunTrust provides up to 96.5 percent financing on many loans. In addition, the full value of the down payment can come from a gift from a family member, employer, or other parties. 

The bank offers borrowers the choice between a fixed-rate mortgage and ARM. These types of loans can be a suitable option for buyers with limited equity available for a down payment.

SunTrust VA Loans

Current or former members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their spouses may qualify for a VA mortgage.

This type of loan allows borrowers to opt for 100 percent financing with no down payment. As with FHA mortgages, buyers who choose to take out VA loans can choose between fixed-rate or adjustable-rate mortgages. Eligible borrowers oftentimes choose to take out VA loans because of their flexible term options and reasonable costs.

SunTrust Agency Affordable Financing

SunTrust designed this type of mortgage for buyers looking for extra affordability. With this mortgage, borrowers can put down as little as 3 percent down and may use seller contributions and gifts toward their down payment. Another desirable feature about this type of mortgage is the lower monthly insurance cost than one might have with an adjustable-rate or jumbo mortgage.

SunTrust Agency Plus Financing

Buyers looking into a high-cost home should consider this type of mortgage. Rather than taking out multiple loans or a jumbo loan, it offers a flexible option to allow borrowers to afford their dream homes.

They typically include a loan maximum of $679,650, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Agency Plus Financing loans aren’t just available for primary residences; they can also apply toward vacation homes and investment properties.

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SunTrust USDA Loans

The U.S. Department of Agriculture provides financing options to home buyers moving to rural locations. Oftentimes, borrowers do not need to put a down payment on the home, and they can receive funding up to 100 percent, by paying a one-time guarantee fee and an annual fee to the USDA. Borrowers moving to a rural area on a tight budget can benefit from this type of loan.

SunTrust Doctor Loan Program

This loan offers a substantial benefit to doctors, which includes flexible rate and finance options. Most importantly, it forgives student loans, which can be astronomical after graduating from medical school, and a financial burden for years.

Doctors can receive up to 100 percent financing and may not be required to pay monthly mortgage insurance costs. It is worth noting that these loans are only available in select states and counties, including AL, AR, DE, FL, GA, MD, MS, NC, SC, TN, VA, WV, DC, and some parts of PA. Other states may place restrictions on maximum loan-to-value ratios.

This program is available to different types of physicians, including:

  • Dentists (DDS and DMD)
  • Physicians (MD, DO, and DPM)
  • Fellows in MD, DO, DPM, or other programs
  • Licensed residents

SunTrust Mortgage Customer Experience

At SunTrust Mortgage, you cannot fill out an online application or receive an online quote, but you can choose to email or call a loan officer to apply for a home mortgage. These professionals can help you find the best type of loan for your budget and lifestyle.

SunTrust recently announced that it plans on launching a digital resource, SmartGUIDE Mortgage Application, which will help expedite the process, to just 30 to 40 minutes. Additionally,

SunTrust offers current mortgage and interest rate costs on its site, for instant price estimates. The bank’s online FAQ can help answer any questions that are related to SunTrust specifically or to the mortgage process in general.

A crucial element of customer experience we look at is how actual consumers rate their interactions with a company. A good indicator of this is the JD Power Primary Mortgage Originator rankings.

For 2017, SunTrust had two stars (out of five) in the categories of loan offerings, application/approval process, interaction, loan closing, onboarding, and overall satisfaction. This indicates a lower than average approval and satisfaction with the bank.

Additionally, in Jan. 2017, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Monthly Complaint Record reported 43.7 complaints per three-month period for SunTrust Bank, a 6 percent difference from the previous year. However, SunTrust has not made it onto the record since then, so it may be that issues have been minimized.

We would be remiss not to mention that in 2018, approximately 1.5 million accounts may have been compromised when a former SunTrust employee stole client contact lists. This individual was supposedly working with a criminal third party when this occurred, possibly exposing clients’ names, addresses, phone numbers, and account balances. Fortunately, Social Security numbers, account numbers, PINs, and passwords were not leaked.

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In 2014, SunTrust had to pay $968 million as a settlement fee with the government when the bank did not comply with standards when issuing federally supported mortgages. SunTrust offered approximately $500 million in borrower relief to distressed consumers.

However, the bank has received its fair share of honors. Risk.net named SunTrust Bank of the Year for Risk Appetite Framework. J.D. Power’s U.S. Home Equity Line of Credit Satisfaction Study ranked SunTrust as the highest bank in all-around HELOC customer satisfaction, and Global Finance magazine named it the Best Trade Finance Provider in the Southeast for 2018.

SunTrust Lender Reputation

SunTrust was founded as a bank in 1891 to service the southeastern U.S. The company has a BBB rating of one out of five stars with 61 customer reviews, which is very low for this type of institution. The CFPB took action against this lender, forcing it to provide $500 million in relief to borrowers experiencing short sales and foreclosures.

  • Information collected Nov. 5, 2018

SunTrust Mortgage Qualifications

Credit score

Quality

Ease of approval

760+

Excellent

Easy

700-759

Good

Somewhat easy

621-699

Fair

Moderate

620 and below

Poor

Somewhat difficult

No credit score

n/a

Difficult

Generally, when borrowers have a credit score above 760, they should have no trouble securing a mortgage.

If borrowers have a credit score that is less than 760 but still considered “good,” they may qualify for mortgages, but may not get the best rates. When borrowers have “fair” to “poor” credit (or no credit score at all), they might have trouble being approved for traditional mortgages.

Although SunTrust can qualify individuals with a debt-to-income ratio of more than 35 percent, their home mortgage rates will likely increase once they pass this amount.

The bank’s minimum required down payment depends on the type of loan. Typically, 20 percent down is the requirement for conventional loans, but SunTrust has proven very flexible for borrowers who need to make a lower down payment. Some of its loans require no down payment at all.

SunTrust Phone Number & Additional Details

  • Homepage URL: https://www.suntrust.com/
  • Company Phone: 1-855-228-2927
  • Headquarters Address: SunTrust Mortgage, 303 Peachtree Street, Northeast Atlanta, GA 30308-3201
  • States Serviced: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and D.C.

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