Whether you’re looking for your first home or trying to figure out the best way to pay off or refinance your mortgage, the world of apps has a huge array of tools for you. Bankrate takes a look at some of the most popular programs for mortgage applications, mortgage payments, home shopping and general savings to guide you in your real estate journey.
All of the apps in this roundup average 4/5 stars or higher in the Apple app store and the Google Play store reviews.
Mortgage application apps
1. Big banks (Chase, Wells Fargo, etc.)
Bank apps tend to have a lot of functionality and are highly rated across the board. If you’re looking for a new mortgage, you may get some special offers from a lender you already have accounts with. Keep in mind: your bank won’t give you quotes from other lenders, so you’ll still want to comparison shop. Check out more of the apps below for other places to look. Here’s a quick look at the apps offered by the top three mortgage-lending banks. All of these will generally be best for the bank’s existing customers.
Best for: Existing bank customers
Users appreciated the app’s efficient and intuitive layout.
Fast and efficient app. Well organized and lays out my information in a well designed matter that makes it very easy to navigate and know what’s going on with all my accounts. Thank you guys, you actually bring meaning to the phrase “making banking easier.” – Jakob Black, Google Play store.
Available on: iOS and Android
Like with Wells Fargo, users commented that the app had lots of different functions and was generally easy to use. A note of caution: some older devices may no longer be supported.
Fast transaction and ease of use. Great app. – bongmar, Apple app store
Available on: iOS and Android
Bank of America
Overall, users said Bank of America’s app was good for most functions, but recent reviews suggest some may find its layout a little cluttered.
The app does what it’s supposed to do. You can schedule bill payments (though you need to schedule days in advance and can’t do same day or next day), you can check your balance, deposit checks and etc. – Tj Marz, Google Play store
Available on: iOS and Android
2. Mortgage by Zillow
User reviews mostly said this app was easy to use and effective for shopping for mortgage quotes. There were a few complaints about the repayment calculator feature, but the application functionality seems to be user-approved.
This app makes it so easy to figure out what I can afford and helps me customize the price of the home and the down payment I need to get a mortgage I am comfortable paying – ZZZfanatic, Apple app store
Best for: New homebuyers
3. Rocket Mortgage
App store reviews show that most users found Rocket Mortgage easy to use for both new home loans and mortgage refinancing. Users noted that the app was an efficient way to apply for a loan and keep tabs on the processing without having to go into a brick and mortar lending location.
I’m very picky when it comes to finances and technology. I love this app. It’s convenient. Simple and smart. It has systems to help find income documents and link bank statements. It also has 24/7 updates in processing. A very nice platform for e-signs. – brent56-amy, Apple app store
Best for: Users who want to do everything digitally
4. Guaranteed Rate
Users say this app is best when it comes to applying for a new loan — the other functionalities seem to leave something to be desired. But, reviewers said, loan processing with Guaranteed is efficient and friendly.
This is a basic sales tool. There is not functionality within the app to manage your account or see other details for existing customers – cali_chicken, Apple app store
Best for: No-frills loan applications
*Note: All apps in this category are free to use, but there may be fees if you move forward with your mortgage application
You can also get quotes directly from lenders through Bankrate’s mortgage rate table.
Mortgage payment apps
1. U.S. Mortgage Calculator
This app lets you figure out what your mortgage payment will be, and could be a good tool to help you decide what kind of loan will be the best fit as you prepare to apply for a mortgage. Plenty of data inputs let you get an accurate picture of how much you’ll pay. If you don’t want to download an app, Bankrate has a mortgage calculator.
Simple and straightforward. Allows you to play with different interest rates and loan amounts, to find a monthly payment that works for you. – Terri West, Google Play store
Best for: Mortgage applicants looking to plan
2. Karl’s Mortgage Calculator
Lets mortgage holders figure out their monthly payments and find ways to pay off loans early through extra payments. It also supports adjustable-rate mortgages and provides a number of inputs to help you make the data as accurate as possible for your own financial situation.
Makes calculating extra payments to see how it affects your interest/principal so easy. Super motivating to see what’s possible. I also love that you can see the data represented in raw numbers, graphs, charts, etc, so you can digest the info however you prefer. – Elvira Marin, Google Play store
Best for: ARM borrowers or anyone looking to calculate the benefit of extra payments
3. Debt Payoff Planner & Tracker
A few apps have similar names, so to clarify: this is the one with an icon that looks like a dove holding money. This allows you to create a custom debt payoff plan tailored to your own financial situation and goals. It includes all kinds of debt, not just your mortgage.
Our family is currently carrying a lot of debt from student loans, mortgage, credit cards and more. I love the amortization options and how you can play around with your payoff order and the app will let you know how long it will take and the amount of interest overall you’ll pay. – MossFamilyStar, Apple app store
Best for: Borrowers looking to pay down their debts across the board
4. Bee Mortgage
This app is designed for new homebuyers trying to figure out how much they can afford and what to expect from a mortgage. It allows you to estimate your price range to guide your real estate shopping based on a few answers from you about your finance — no credit check required.
Smooth sailing app. I’m a realtor and this tool helps many people I know since it can give them a good idea of their expectations. I’m amazed at how many people can really qualify to be homeowners and never cross that bridge because of the fear of being rejected. Great way to get people/friends/family to consider investing in a home and starting that piggy bank. – Google Play store
Best for: First-time homebuyers
Real estate apps
A widely-used app for real estate searches, Zillow has strong user reviews and lots of functionality. A few recent reviews show quibbles with new updates, but this mainstay is likely to stay dominant in the real estate space.
This has really helped me in narrowing down homes to purchase as well good informational insight to homes sold and how long on Zillow. – Merchants HVAC, Google Play store
Best for: A wide variety of shoppers
Another popular real estate app with personal writeups from Realtors on some of the listings. Users said this app was easy to navigate and updates quickly when new homes hit the market.
Very user friendly and lots of great features such as being able to schedule a home tour! – yankel31, Apple app store
Best for: Homebuyers looking for an agent
Home shoppers are probably familiar with the Trulia brand, too. It’s a popular one among buyers and has lots of functionality. The app touts its neighborhood-level data as a useful tool for buyers.
Up to date! Accurate information all the time! Crime in the area helps! – Beatrice525, Apple app store
Best for: Learning about the neighborhood you’re looking at
This app helps homebuyers search up-to-date listings and neighborhood statistics. It recently added information about ambient noise levels at listed properties, and includes a mortgage calculator tool.
Fantastic source for information. I love it. But it could be improved by more easily identifying pending and contingent sales. – R. Rodriguez, Google Play store
Best for: Homebuyers worried about noise
Down payment saving apps
Digit is one of the most well-known automated savings apps and it tracks activity in your checking account. It automatically moves funds from checking to savings in amounts its algorithms believe are safe to save.
This app has helped me save very responsibly this past year. I would recommend it to anybody. – Nick T 513, Apple app store
Best for: Optimizing savings decisions
Cost: $5 per month
Another digital banking alternative, Current offers a variety of personal finance tools to its customers. You can set up savings goals — like a rainy day or vacation fund — the app will automatically set money aside to help you fund them. You can also manually deposit extra money toward those goals.
The fact that I’m able to manage my own money fills me with a sense of security. The app is easy to use, easy to navigate and easy to understand. I couldn’t ask for more from a mobile banking app. It’s great for those that want to start being independent. – Jesus Mejia, Google Play store
Best for: Automating your savings
Cost: $36 annual fee for card
This app lets you put your spare change into an investment account. Once you link a debit or credit card, Acorns will round up the total on what you buy to the next dollar and invest that spare change into a diversified investment portfolio based on your goals. This could help you save up for your down payment faster if the market stays favorable. You can also set up a recurring transfer into Acorns.
I love how easy this app makes investing. After you set it up you just watch your nest egg grow. – LindaBSearcy, Apple app store
Best for: Novice investors
Cost: $1-5 per month depending on plan
This app allows you to move your spare change into a savings account. If you send your direct deposit to your Chime account, you can also establish a rule for Chime to move a percentage of your paycheck into your savings. A round-up option is also available to boost savings.
Chime is the best! It’s the most convenient and user-friendly bank out there right now! – kick_88, Apple app store
Best for: Those who want their bank app to save their spare change
You can also check out Bankrate’s simple calculator for some basic savings insights.