Central Bank Review

Chris

In a Nutshell

Central Bank is a full-service, local community bank that has over 140 locations across the midwest for all every banking need. They specialize in their offerings for home loan solutions and offer personalized guidance to find the best plan for each lender.

pros

  • Wide variety of home loan options
  • Full-service bank
  • Direct lender

cons

  • Rates are unavailable without calling
  • Currently no option for 10-year mortgage loans

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Central Bank at a Glance 

Direct lender or marketplace?
Direct lender
Loan types:
Purchase, refinance, and home equity
Featured Loans:
USDA, VA, FHA
Repayment terms:
Between 15 and 30 years
Minimum Down Payment:
As low as 3.5% (with an FHA loan), or no down payment (with qualifying VA or USDA loans)
Minimum Credit Score:
680
Best for:
Variety of loan options

Overview

Central Bank is a full-service bank, all types of solutions for your banking needs - both personal and business. They offer adjustable-rate, fixed-rate, FHA, VA, and USDA loans for your home buying needs. You can also refinance your home or get a home equity line of credit with Central Bank.

Best For?

Central Bank is best for those who need options when it comes to getting a mortgage. They have a wide range of offerings for any type of lender, such as: fixed and adjustable rates, FHA, VA, and USDA loans and HELOC.

While you can go the traditional route of a fixed-rate mortgage, we found that the additional loan options and personalized guidance Central Bank provides (more on this below) will benefit those with unique needs.

Types of Loans/Products

Central Bank offers adjustable-rate, fixed-rate, FHA, VA, and USDA loans. In addition, you can get a home equity line of credit on your existing home, or refinance your existing mortgage loan. 

Here’s a breakdown of the different home loans offered:

  • Fixed-rate: You can get a loan anywhere from 15 to 30 years with a fixed-rate. The interest rate will be locked for the life of the loan and if you go for a 30-year, you’ll tend to have a lower monthly payment since the payments are stretched out for a longer period.
  • Adjustable-rate: You’ll get a “teaser rate” that’s locked in for the first 1, 3, 5, 7, or 10 years. After that, your rate will adjust each year based on current market conditions. If you’re looking to only own a home for a short period, this might be a good option for you.
  • FHA: These loans are guaranteed by the Federal Housing Administration. FHA loans have been backed by the government and assist borrowers with lower incomes or assets in purchasing a home. This loan allows for down payments as low as 3.5%, and credit scores as low as 500 can qualify. Know that mortgage insurance premiums are required with an FHA loan. This loan type is most appropriate for borrowers with lower credit scores or those bringing a down payment of less than 20%.
  • VA: These mortgages are supported by the Department of Veterans Affairs and are accessible to military service members and specialists.  With VA loans, there's no deposit required.  There is, however, an upfront VA funding fee that you must pay (which varies by year).  On the upside, you will pay no mortgage insurance on a VA loan. This loan type is ideal for military-qualified homebuyers who want a low-interest rate and no minimum down payment.
  • USDA: These home loans are mortgages issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  There's no deposit required on many properties, home improvement grants and loans are available, and income limitations and property value caps will apply.  This loan type is ideal for income-qualified buyers in rural and suburban regions requiring either no down payment or low-down payment.
  • HELOC. Home equity lines of credit are also available from Central Bank. These loans allow you to take equity from your existing home and turn it into cash for things like home improvements, debt consolidation, or large purchases.

The Application Process

The application process with Central Bank is pretty straightforward. Here are the steps you’ll go through to apply:

  1. Select your local office -- you’ll choose from a variety of locations in which to get your loan serviced through
  2. Say if you are buying a home or refinancing an existing one
  3. Enter your legal name and current address
  4. Provide information on your current assets
  5. State your current income
  6. Declare any real estate you own
  7. Sign legal disclosures
  8. Enter your demographic information
  9. Answer additional questions required for legal purposes

All in all, the process takes about 10 minutes if you have all the right information with you. Once you’ve entered the information, Central Bank will review your application, and someone at the location you selected will get in touch with you.

Rates and Fees– The Bare Basics 

Central Bank does not provide current rates and fees on their website. They state that their rates are very low and competitive, and that “all loan decisions are made locally, right here in your community to make sure we can give you the lowest rate possible.” 

That said, you can get this information rather quickly by calling them and providing a few details:

  • The Loan Purpose:  Purchase or Refinance
  • Occupancy Status:  Primary Residence, Second Home, or Investment Property
  • Home Type: Single Family, Condo, or Townhome
  • Estimated Home Value
  • Anticipated Loan Amount

Repayment Terms

Central Bank offers repayment terms between 15 and 30 years. If you go with an adjustable-rate mortgage, however, your repayment term may be shorter, depending on the exact type of loan you choose.

Help & Support

Central Bank puts a heavy focus on customer service. For frequently asked questions, they have an entire FAQ section. You can also contact them by phone at any time at (877) 331-2998. Additionally, you can email them at cbccustomerservice@centralbank.net.  

Finally, Central Bank has an online chat feature if you don’t want to bother calling or emailing. Online chat is available Monday - Friday: 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM, Saturdays: 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM, and is not available on Sundays. 

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Summary

Central Bank is a full-service bank that offers a variety of home loan options. If you prefer to work with a local community bank and want to do all your banking with one bank, Central Bank might be a good option for you.

FAQ

How many branch locations does Central Bank currently have?

Central bank has more than 140 locations across the Midwest.

How does Central Bank compare to other national banks?

Central Bank, owned by Central Bancompany, is ranked for the 12th consecutive year on Forbes Magazine’s list of “America’s Best Banks.” The annual review of the nation’s 100 largest financial institutions ranked Central Bancompany as the 17th best bank in the nation for 2020.

What kind of home loan options does Central Bank offer?

Central Bank currently offers fixed-rate, adjustable-rate, FHA, VA, and USDA loans for home buyers.


Chris has an MBA with a focus in advanced investments and has been writing about all things personal finance since 2015. He’s also built and ran a digital marketing agency, focusing on content marketing, copywriting, and SEO, since 2016.

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