CMG Financial

CMG Financial

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Written by Emily Moore
Edited by Sally Jones

About CMG Financial

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CMG Mortgage (NMLS #1820) is a privately held mortgage lender established in 1993. It is headquartered in San Ramon, California. The company offers the most common types of conventional and government-backed mortgages. It also has specialty loan programs with lower down payment options, the option to combine a bank account with a mortgage and crowdfunding for those seeking down payment assistance. CMG Financial is a registered trade name of CMG Mortgage.

Pros

  • Licensed in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.
  • Specialty mortgage products
  • Local loan officers in many areas

Cons

  • No immediate access to rates
  • Closing cost and fees not disclosed online

Bottom Line

CMG Mortgage is a direct lender. It offers mortgages for buyers with a variety of financial situations, including unique programs many other lenders don’t offer. You can visit branches in most states; mortgages are available in all states and Washington, D.C.

Rates

CMG Mortgage doesn’t provide its mortgage rates online. Its home purchase rates over the last three years have been slightly higher than the national average. To see what interest rate you qualify for, you'll have to fill out an online form, download the mobile app or call to speak with a loan originator. Personal factors may make your rate higher or lower than the national average.

The company offers adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) with some of its loan programs. An ARM has an introductory rate that's set for a certain amount of time. At the end of that period, the rate changes at set intervals based on a benchmark index and a margin added by the lender. For example, your introductory rate could be fixed for five years and then reset at one-year intervals.

ARMs usually have lower introductory interest rates than fixed-rate mortgages. This makes them appealing to some borrowers because the initial payments are lower. However, they come with the uncertainty due to fluctuations after the fixed rate ends. An ARM might be a good option if you plan to refinance your loan or sell your home before the fixed-rate period ends or if you think you'll be financially prepared for a higher payment if interest rates rise.

CMG Mortgage average home purchase rate vs. national average

YearDifference from national average
2021+0.04%
2020+0.02%
2019+0.09%
Information pulled from public Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data. Rates reflect noncommercial home purchase loans only.

Application process

CMG Mortgage has an online application process you can complete from its website or app. You can also call the company to initiate an application. Once you start an application, you'll be assigned a loan officer to walk you through every step of the process to get a mortgage. They can also help you choose a mortgage based on your credit score, down payment and overall finances.

You can submit required documents online or through the mobile app. Once the paperwork is sent to the company, it will request an appraisal of the home, begin the underwriting process and give final approval. The overall application process with CMG Mortgage is as follows:

  1. You meet your loan officer (virtually or at a branch).
  2. You make an offer on a home and get a purchase contract.
  3. The processing team verifies the information on the application.
  4. The loan goes through underwriting; the loan officer requests additional documents, if needed.
  5. You learn if your loan was approved or denied.
  6. If approved, you get a “clear to close” and a scheduled closing date to sign paperwork.

You can track your application and loan status at any time online or on the app. The company offers preapprovals to give you an estimate of how much you can borrow, interest rates and your potential monthly payment. Preapproval is helpful for showing a seller you have financial backing. For preapproval, the company asks for:

  • Income and employment history
  • Current monthly debts 
  • Credit score 
  • Source and amount of down payment 
  • Completed loan application 

CMG Mortgage has a rate lock program called “Lock N Shop” that allows you to lock in your interest rate for 60 or 90 days. This is helpful — especially when interest rates are on the rise. You can lock in your mortgage rate even if you don’t have a purchase contract. The program is available for conventional, FHA, VA and USDA fixed-rate loans. If interest rates fall during the rate lock period, CMG Mortgage has a one-time float-down option so you can take advantage of the better rate.

CMG Mortgage application features

FeaturesAvailability
Online application
Mobile document upload
Physical branchesMost states
Publishes minimum rate on websiteX
Rate lock60 or 90 days
Pre-qualification (no hard credit pull)
Certified approval letter

Loan types

In addition to conventional, FHA, VA and USDA loans, CMG Mortgage also has specialty mortgage products, including the following:

  • Jumbo mortgage: A jumbo loan is a nonconforming mortgage that exceeds the amount set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency for your area. Loan amounts go up to $5 million.
  • All In One loan: CMG’s All In One program combines banking with home financing. It gives borrowers the potential to save money and take years off the loan term, according to the company. In this program, the borrower can make bank deposits that lower the principal balance, but the funds remain available to tap if needed. Loan interest is calculated on your average daily balance. Because of this, the company says there are lower monthly interest payments.
  • FHA 203(k) renovation loan: This renovation loan is government-backed and combines the home price with renovation costs. This allows for one loan payment. Repair costs must be more than $5,000.

CMG Mortgage also offers Fannie Mae HomeReady and Freddie Mac Home Possible mortgages.

Loan applications for home purchases only by year

202120202019
Home purchase applications42,69244,47434,111
Home purchase loans closed31,62832,45225,455
Home purchase applications denied1,3361,7951,235
Home purchase preapprovals denied627232
Information pulled from public Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data. Includes conventional, USDA, VA and FHA mortgages.

Refinancing

CMG Mortgage offers refinancing loans. Most people tend to refinance when mortgage interest rates are low. In 2020 and 2021, the number of borrowers refinancing loans was quite high. It might make sense to refinance if:

  • Interest rates are low and you want to lower your monthly payment.
  • You want to change from an adjustable-rate to a fixed-rate mortgage.
  • You're looking to shorten or lengthen the term of your loan.
  • You want to get cash out of your equity.

At CMG Mortgage about 24% of mortgage loans between 2019 and 2021 were rate-and-term refinance loans. The majority of loans originated by the company over those three years were home purchase loans.

Home purchase vs. refinance loans by year

202120202019
Home purchase loans55.79%52.21%69.15%
Refinance loans24.43%32.24%17.04%
Cash-out refinance19.72%15.56%13.81%
Information pulled from public Home Mortgage Disclosure Act Data. Includes conventional, USDA, VA and FHA mortgages.

Requirements

CMG Mortage’s requirements for mortgage approval are on par with industry standards regarding minimum credit score, debt-to-income ratio (DTI) and down payment percentages. There are calculators on its website to help determine how much house you can afford based on the information you enter.  The main requirements CMG Mortgage looks at for mortgage approval include:

Credit score: CMG Mortgage requires a 620 credit score for conventional loans, 580 score for FHA loans, around 620 for USDA loans and 680 for jumbo loans. For credit score requirements on a VA loan, you need to speak with a loan officer.

Debt-to-income (DTI) ratio: This is the percentage of your income that goes to paying debts each month. The maximum DTI ratio on a conventional loan and FHA loan from CMG Mortgage is 45%; on a VA loan and USDA loan it’s 41%.

Down payment amount: Conventional loans allow as little as 3% down, while FHA loans allow 3.5%. VA loans and USDA loans don’t require a down payment.

National mortgage requirements by type

Min. credit scoreMin. down paymentCompare with other lenders
ConventionalTypically 620Typically 3%Mortgage lenders
FHA5003.5% with 580 credit scoreFHA lenders
VASet by lender (often 580)0%VA lenders
USDASet by lender (often 640)0%USDA lenders

Cost and fees

Closing costs with CMG are generally between 3% and 6% of the home purchase price. CMG Mortgage doesn’t provide its closing costs online, but closing costs usually include:

  • Loan origination fee
  • Home appraisal fee 
  • Credit report fee
  • Tax service fee
  • Escrow fee
  • Recording charge 
  • Property taxes 
  • Insurance 
  • Daily interest fees

You will get a breakdown of estimated closing costs and fees within three business days after you submit a loan application. A more precise breakdown is provided right before closing.

FAQ

What is CMG Mortgage?

CMG Mortgage is a private mortgage lender headquartered in California. It offers conventional, government-backed and specialty mortgage loan products throughout the U.S.

Is CMG Mortgage legit?

CMG Mortgage has been in the mortgage lending industry since 1993. In 2021 it closed on nearly 59,000 loans, including purchase and refinance loans.

Where is CMG Mortgage available?

CMG Mortgage can originate loans in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., and has branches in many states. You can locate the nearest branch by using the search tool on its website.

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Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 7, 2022

Hello - CMG is the mortgage lender on my home. I had to revise my auto-pay due to an escrow adjustment. The revised amount did not go through on the correct date and the payment was recorded as late to the credit bureau. I made double payments to make the account current the following month, overpay against my principal each month and have never missed a payment. My credit score then dropped approximately 200 points. CMG said to dispute with the bureaus and that their response to the dispute could remove the late payment posting. I filed the dispute with 3 agencies.

The CMG response to the agencies then DID NOT fix the late posting and my credit score remains approximately 200 points lower, due to their auto-pay system issues. Upon speaking to the "resolution department", they can see that the auto pay was set up for 7/1/22 but that they cannot help. I must now write a letter to the "message center" of CMG website instead of the "resolution department" resolving this. Will update next step.....

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ConsumerAffairs writers primarily rely on government data, industry experts and original research from other reputable publications to inform their work. To learn more about the content on our site, visit our FAQ page. Specific sources for this article include:
  1. Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, “HMDA Data Publication.” Accessed Sept. 13, 2022.

CMG Financial Company Information

Company Name:
CMG Financial
Website:
www.cmgfi.com