[Update 1: Updated with comments and additional information from Quicken Loans]
For the second year in a row, Quicken Loans has the most satisfied customers of any mortgage servicer, according to the J.D. Power 2015 U.S. Primary Mortgage Servicer Satisfaction Study.
The J.D. Power study, released Thursday, measures customer satisfaction with the mortgage servicing experience in six factors: new customer orientation; billing and payment process; escrow account administration; interaction; mortgage fees; and communications.
Satisfaction is calculated on a 1,000-point scale.
Last year, Quicken topped the mortgage servicer satisfaction rankings in its first year of eligibility with a satisfaction score of 835.
This year, Quicken topped the rankings again, with a score of 834.
That score puts in well beyond the second-ranked servicer, Citizens, which earned a satisfaction score of 768.
Ranking third is Capital One, with a satisfaction score of 742.
According to a release from Quicken Loans, the lender ranked #1 in all six categories in addition to ranking first overall.
According to the J.D. Power study, Quicken Loans clients also rated the company 29% higher for “innovation” and 26% higher for being “customer-driven” than the industry averages.
In addition, the J.D. Power study stated that 100% of Quicken Loans clients surveyed said the company’s “call center representatives are easy to understand.”
According to Quicken, one of the most telling results of the J.D. Power survey was their finding that Quicken Loans’ clients are 85% more likely to “definitely” recommend Quicken Loans to a friend, relative or colleague than the industry average.
In addition, the study also found that Quicken Loans’ clients are 85% more likely to “definitely” return to Quicken Loans for their next mortgage (refinance and purchase combined average) than the industry average.
“In an industry where many look at servicing a loan as merely collecting payments and harassing customers, we see this part of the business as an opportunity to build and continue long-term robust relationships with our clients,” said Dan Gilbert, founder and chairman of Quicken Loans.
“We obsess over every detail of the mortgage process and are always encouraging our 13,000 team members to find better ways to simplify and improve the entire client experience for all of our clients,” Gilbert said. “Every inch counts and our motivated and caring team members are well aware of that.”
Quicken’s CEO Bill Emerson said that the company’s entire staff focuses on the client experience.
“What is even more encouraging is our passion for continuing to innovate and improve the experience even further,” Emerson said. “We have a team that is eternally grateful but never satisfied, and through that spirit we will continue to deliver a client experience that is unmatched in our industry.”
Overall, customer satisfaction with mortgage servicers in 2015 is 718.
At the bottom of the J.D. Power rankings was Nationstar Mortgage with a score of 646; Ocwen Loan Servicing with a score of 608; and Green Tree Servicing with a score of 601.
In the last year, Ocwen was subject to a $150 million fine from the New York Department of Financial Services for failures in its servicing practices.
Ocwen admitted in the agreement with the New York regulatory agency that it didn't properly deal with distressed homeowners and failed to maintain adequate systems for servicing hundreds of billions of dollars in mortgages.
Green Tree was also fined for its servicing shortcomings earlier this year.
In April, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission announced that the organizations were taking action against Green Tree, a subsidiary of Walter Investment Management Corp. (WAC), for “mistreating borrowers” who were attempting to save their homes from foreclosure.
According to the CFPB and the FTC, Green Tree failed to honor modifications for loans transferred from other servicers, demanded payments before providing loss mitigation options, delayed decisions on short sales, and harassed and threatened overdue borrowers.
As part of the agreement, Green Tree agreed to pay $48 million in restitution to victims, and a $15 million civil money penalty to the CFPB’s Civil Penalty Fund for its illegal actions, the CFPB said.
Last year, while based on a different set of factors, the overall satisfaction average increased to 754, up from 733 in 2013.
According to J.D. Power’s study, providing an “outstanding mortgage servicing experience” can generate high levels of advocacy and loyalty.
The study found that 85% of highly satisfied customers – with an overall satisfaction scores of 900 or higher – say they “definitely will” recommend their mortgage servicer and 74% say they “definitely will” reuse their servicing provider for their next home purchase.
Among mortgage service customers who are highly satisfied, 14% are at-risk customers and 86% are customers who are current with their payment, the study results showed.
Nearly half (46%) of all customers surveyed indicated their mortgage servicer is not the company they originated the loan with.
Among customers who have been transferred, 22% report that they have been transferred at least two times.
Overall satisfaction among customers who have been transferred is 66 index points lower than among those who have not been transferred – 682 vs. 748, respectively.
Satisfaction among customers who have been transferred more than once is 646, which is 102 points lower than among those who are still with the same servicer.
The 2015 U.S. Primary Mortgage Servicer Satisfaction Study is based on responses from 5,922 customers who have had a mortgage on their primary residence for at least one year.
The study was conducted from March through April 2015.
Here are the full rankings (with satisfaction score) of the J.D. Power 2015 U.S. Primary Mortgage Servicer Satisfaction Study:
- Quicken Loans – 834
- Citizens – 768
- Capital One – 742
- Fifth Third Mortgage – 740
- U.S. Bank – 739
- Wells Fargo Home Mortgage – 737
- BB&T – 735
- Regions Mortgage – 733
- Bank of America – 732
- JPMorgan Chase – 730
- SunTrust Mortgage – 727
- PennyMac – 710
- PNC Mortgage – 710
- CitiMortgage – 709
- Flagstar Bank – 709
- M&T Mortgage – 706
- Central Mortgage Company – 704
- Nationstar Mortgage – 646
- Ocwen Loan Servicing – 608
- Green Tree Servicing – 601
Also included in the study, but not ranked due to a small sample size, are Caliber Home Loans, EverBank Mortgage, Franklin American Mortgage, Freedom Mortgage, and RoundPoint Mortgage Servicing.