Is LendingTree Reputable?

lendingtree-manWith interest rates still at record lows, my wife and I have been considering refinancing our house (last year, we refinanced our rental home). I typically use a trusted mortgage pro to handle anything I do with my home – but this time I thought I would go elsewhere. His rates have traditionally been higher than other lenders – but I’ve remained loyal to him because he is so helpful and I know we aren’t going to get “messed” with.

That said – this time around I figured I would give Lending Tree a try. I’m sure you’ve seen the commercials, “when banks compete, you win” – or this guy, Stanley Johnson:

They have definitely spent the marketing dollars to become a big player in the bank/lending recommendation business.

My story with LendingTree

So, on January 11, I decided to “let the banks compete” and submitted my inquiry for a refinance on our house at It was a pretty easy process and it didn’t take a lot of time. I answered some pretty basic questions about the loan I was seeking, terms, personal information and hit the submit button.

In minutes – no seconds really – I was flooded with emails from lenders. Then, a few phone calls – from real people – started trickling in. I didn’t answer.

I was a bit freaked out. But, I should have known this was going to happen, right? I figured that I’d get some inquiries here and there – but instantaneous? It was like these folks were just waiting by the phone and computers – just ready to pounce. On me.

One of the first inquiries was from Discover Home Loans. I have a credit card with them and have written about how you can use your Cashback rewards at Amazon. Discover was really my first credit card – and while I’ve given them my share of stupid tax over the years, I have generally appreciated how they conduct themselves (as far as credit card companies are concerned). So, I responded to them, getting the representative on the phone who had initially contacted me. He was polite and helpful – got some initial information from me so he could start the process of my refinance. There was a little more immediacy to his pitch than I would have liked – but the guy is trying to a “close a deal” – so I wrote it off as such.

All the while – the emails and phone calls continued. I tried to close out the other offers on my account – but this didn’t stop ’em. They just kept calling. And emailing.

I continued my correspondence with my rep at Discover and sent him more documents and information he had requested. The whole process was going smoothly and I was generally pleased with how they were handling my case.

The other lenders? They still wanted to compete. And so, the phone calls -and emails kept coming. I replied to a couple, letting them know I was working with another lender, but I couldn’t reply to all. It was getting annoying.

Several weeks passed, my case was handed off to an assistance of my rep at Discover and the process continued. Documents signed, scanned and sent. The refinance process is not an easy one (as you might be aware) – and it has gotten a lot worse over the years thanks in large part to the recent mortgage crisis.

At this point – I was hoping for an off switch at LendingTree – but I couldn’t find one. And, I really didn’t want to answer every single offer with a “sorry, I’m working with another lender at this time..”

Due to the nature of our personal situation our refinance has started to get bumpy. It’s now approaching two months since my initial inquiry and we are still trying to  make it work. And, I’m sure this is not entirely their fault – but more related to our unique situation. Still – it’s not been a great ride.

Oh – the phone calls and emails? Yes, they are still coming. Not quite as frequently as they once did of course. The bad thing about the age we live in is the customer relationship programs these big companies have now. Once you get loaded into their sales funnel, it’s almost a guaranteed life sentence of being annoyed by them. I didn’t sign up for that.

So is LendingTree any good? I can only speak to the home mortgage side of their lenders – but I could only imagine the treatment being the same with other products. They need to work on allowing the customer to “tame” the lenders – and opt out (right away) of any offers or promotions they don’t want. Otherwise, they are going to annoy some good people.

Part of any good business is having people come back again for your service. And, honestly, do I want to subject myself to more of the same? Probably not. In the future, I’ll probably opt for my trusted mortgage advisor or my personal bank to get the loan I want.

Have you ever tried LendingTree? What’s been your experience?

UPDATE 3/3: After publishing this article a representative from LendingTree contacted us to let us know they are working on making the experience better for customers. We aren’t out to bash a service or give bad reviews – but to share our experience with you so you can be better informed. While it appears that LendingTree has a little bit of work to do, it does seem like they are out to create a better product for all. 

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        • Sometimes offers can be overwhelming (too many)
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        1. Good review Aaron! I’ve never used Lending Tree and was always curious. I understand the felt need to compete, but I can understand how your experience was overwhelming or just down right annoying. I agree that they should have some type of off switch or at the very least they only allow a certain number of companies to contact you at once.

          • Aaron says:

            Thanks John. Yeah – I’m hoping they can develop something like an “off” switch – otherwise, I don’t think they’ll get many returning customers.

        2. Adam Heeg says:

          I almost signed up on LendingTree just now in 2016. They required my email, phone, address, social security number, and I was required to agree to phone calls, emails, and other advertisements to continue. I cancelled the sign up and I’m glad I did. Putting that much personal information out there with consent for it to be used in any way they see fit is unreasonable and unacceptable to me.

          • Barbara says:

            I cant remember exactly which service I used to compare a mortgage refinance loan, but I had the same exact experience. We refinanced within a couple of months, but we are still, one year later, receiving calls! I attempted to answer a couple of the calls back in the beginning, but experiencing the aggressive nature of the person on the phone when I tried to explain that we already had begun the process and made a commitment with another lender and to please remove us from their calling list, was enough to prompt me not to answer anymore of their calls. SO ANNOYING and no way to turn it off.

        3. Todd Dufrene says:

          If they agreed to make the experience better, they have not done it yet. As soon as I hit check my rate, my phone exploded. When I asked to be removed from the Lending Tree site, the were quick to do so. BUT, they do not send anything out to the lenders that are constantly calling. Some that I talked to were borderline RUDE when I said I was just checking and may stay with what I have. All in all, it is a great way to get noticed but you are overly noticed. LT said they only send information to 4 or 5 lenders but I was attacked by 30+ lenders. Oh and they were ALL rated number 1 by Lending Tree.

          • Aaron says:

            Thanks for letting us know about your experience with LendingTree Todd. Yeah, that is the one thing that I found annoying too. But, I guess you will get that if banks are “competing” for you. I did find the rates to be competitive overall.

        4. David says:

          We used Lending Tree in 2003 for an original home mortgage. Back then I don’t recall getting a barrage of replies, but we picked the top three we liked and went from there. The one we picked though, of course offered the best rates and terms.

          Turns out they lied. We got a bait and switch where many things changed in the HUD-1 and we didn’t get to see it until 30 minutes before our closing appointment. It was not a good day. We felt like we had no choice but to sign anyway, all the while feeling like we were taking it in the shorts.

          We refinanced to a 15 year fixed in 2009 and it’s one of the best financial moves I’ve ever made.

        5. Stop Calling says:

          Wow- I was about to complete this. Got to the ss part backed away thinking — eh…? Googled read this article and just as finished, before I even got to any kind of submit button I had two calls.

          Eager beavers! That’s annoying as duck.

        6. I used Lending Tree recently for a cash-out refinance on my house. My phone exploded along with some emails. I quickly narrowed down to 2 lenders because they has the best rates/options for me and were the nicest and most accommodating with my questions.

          When I said “thanks but no thanks” to lenders, I have not heard back from them. I expect to still receive automated emails, but I can always unsubscribe.

          Maybe Lending Tree has added the “off” button. Just expect to be contacted aggressively as the tradeoff for finding a great deal and you’ll be fine.

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