Mortgage Analysis, Pt. 4

Part
01
of two
Part
01

Top Mortgage Aggregators, Pt. 1

The top three mortgage aggregators in the United States are LendingTree, Bankrate, and Credit Karma. The names and websites of the top three aggregators have been populated in column A of the "Mortgage" tab in the attached spreadsheet.

Lending Tree

  • According to Housing Wire, LendingTree is one of the "top mortgage rate comparison sites" in the United States.
  • Lending Tree's revenue from mortgage products was $242.2 million in 2018. The company's total revenue was $764.9 million.
  • LendingTree was the "top mortgage company in the paid search category, garnering 28.2% of all clicks on the mortgage keyword group" in the period March 1–May 21, 2018.
  • As of December 31, 2018, Bankrate had 909 employees.

Bankrate

  • According to Housing Wire, Bankrate is one of the "top mortgage rate comparison sites" in the United States.
  • Bankrate's total revenue in 2016 was $434.2 million. Its banking segment's (comprising mortgage and other products) revenue $101.4 million in 2016.
  • Bankrate had a 12.6% click share--the third-most (after Quicken Loans)--in the "mortgage keyword group" paid search category in the period March 1 – May 21, 2018.
  • As of December 31, 2016, Bankrate had around 600 employees.

Credit Karma

  • According to Housing Wire, Credit Karma is one of the "top mortgage rate comparison sites" in the United States.
  • Credit Karma's 2019 revenue was nearly $1 billion.
  • It had 700 employees in 2017.

Research Strategy

While there was no mortgage aggregation revenue or market share metric available to compare all mortgage aggregators and determine the top three aggregators, we were able to identify the top aggregators based on a combination of factors among the following: company revenue, mortgage segment revenue, number of employees, mention as a top aggregator, and paid search click share. Other top "mortgage rate comparison sites" such as Zillow were also considered. Zillow's mortgage segment revenue was $100.7 million; however, its "mortgages segment includes financial results for advertising sold to mortgage lenders and other mortgage professionals, mortgage originations through Zillow Home Loans and the sale of mortgages on the secondary market, as well as Mortech mortgage software solutions".
Part
02
of two
Part
02

Mortgage Aggregators, Pt. 2

The competitive landscape for LendingTree appears to address a lot of the required information as it covers affordability on mortgage loans through free services and driving down prices on their product offerings. Other mortgage aggregators such as Bankrate and Credit Karma have their full competitive information populated in the attached spreadsheet.

LendingTree

Pricing for Mortgage Products

Bankrate

  • Bankrate offers its customers balance transfer credit cards which typically has an introductory rate of 0%. This simply means that customers can transfer their credit card debt without having to deal with it for several months and even into a year.
  • The company has partnered with credit card companies such as Discover it, Citi Diamond Prefered Card, and Capital One Venture Rewards credit card.
  • LoanTek was acquired by Bankrate in 2015 for an undisclosed amount.
  • It offers intuitive calculators to assist its clients with how much they can afford to borrow for a mortgage.
  • In 2016, the company launched a mortgage leads product and provider bidding placements in the premium category in their mortgage vertical.

Pricing for Mortgage Products

  • They offer search modules that assist its clients in obtaining mortgages without points. Through which they can be offered lower to no upfront cost.

Credit Karma

Pricing for Mortgage Products

Research Strategy

In providing information on how the competitive landscape of the highlighted mortgage aggregators compare, we examined their company websites, news and media releases, customer reviews, annual reports, and third-party reports to arrive at the answers t. The first mortgage aggregator on the list to be assessed was Lending Tree. For security reasons relating to the use of a security service to protect itself from online attacks, we were unable to successfully access the official website of the company. Other options available to us were to explore third party industry reports with discussions concerning the company's new planned mortgage product or services, expansion, and strategic initiatives in the mortgage category. The request exclusively requested information of the above within the mortgage space but we found that the spreadsheet required other data as well such as the credit card space. Hence, we resolved to find both data to assist the client in this regard. The possibility of obtaining more robust data on the way it charges its consumers was truncated due to the accessibility issues we encountered. Our only available option was some customer reviews on their charges. It was necessary to capture a CNet report on the company's largest funding that was achieved in 2002.

For Bankrate, we gleaned through some company's articles on credit cards as well as the company's credit card space and found some products for its customers. We also approached a PR Newswire annual report for 2016, where we extrapolated information on some products the company launched for the year. Some mortage-related products and services were adequately highlighted in the findings. Considering that Bankrate is a personal finance company that guides its clients to achieve their mortgage goals and other finance-related targets, the company is mostly involved in offering guides to its clients and simply walking them through the entire journey. This is why it has mortgage calculators on its website to further assist clients to reach their desired goals.

On Credit Karma, we provided the company competitive information by assessing the company's website and its blog to determine all the required data. All highlighted information are duly accounted for.

Sources
Sources

From Part 01
Quotes
  • "A review of the top mortgage rate comparison sites (LendingTree, Bankrate, Zillow, Credit Karma and several others) shows lenders advertising rates well above the all-time low that rates fell to just last week."
Quotes
  • "Over on the Internet, LendingTree was the top mortgage company in the paid search category, garnering 28.2 percent of all clicks on the mortgage keyword group during the period. Quicken Loans ranked second with a 19 percent click share, followed by Bank Rate (12.6 percent click share) and two review sites that are paid on a per lead basis by advertisers: ConsumersAdvocate.org (10.2 percent click share) and Top10MortgageLoans.com (6.4 percent click share)."
Quotes
  • "Credit Karma came $108 million short of its 2017 revenue target of $790 million, even though the company increased revenue YoY by some 37%, per Bloomberg."
From Part 02
Quotes
  • "CEO Doug Lebda said optimizing the My LendingTree app and digitizing its mortgage experience are the company's top priorities."
Quotes
  • "LendingTree to receive $50 million in funding"
Quotes
  • "Launched a mortgage leads product and provider bidding for premium placements in our mortgage vertical."
Quotes
  • "Bankrate users are qualified, ready to transact consumers who are interested in YOUR financial products. Our Mortgage advertisers only pay for leads after a consumer works their way through our funnel and chooses to provide their contact information. Investments, auto and home equity advertisers are only charged if a consumer clicks on your company’s hyperlink. If they don’t click, you don’t pay! This means you only pay for qualified, engaged consumers who want to learn more about your offering."