The 2020 BestMoney Awards

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bestmoney awards
Eliana Sagarin
Dec. 31, 20203 min read
As 2020 comes to a close, we’re shining a spotlight on some of our leaders in fintech. From innovation to customer service to overall value, these providers have gone above and beyond, proving that during a challenging year it’s even more important to offer customers the products and services they need to maintain financial wellness.

About Quicken Loans: Quicken Loans offers loans for mortgage purchase or refinance, providing home loans suited for a range of borrowers, such as low credit, low-equity refinancing, and very large loan amounts. With such a wide range of loan options, it can be difficult for borrowers to find a suitable loan. However, Quicken has it all sorted out: its cutting-edge technology helps guide borrowers to the right loan product and complete the loan approval process quickly.

Why it deserves the award: For 11 years in a row, Quicken Loans has been ranked #1 in customer satisfaction by J.D Power. Quicken offers customer support via phone, live chat and email and also provides a useful series of articles and videos to help explain the mortgage process to borrowers.

Commitment to customers is a priority at Quicken Loans, and is a source of pride, highlighted on their mortgage industry blog:

“...even after we close your loan, when we handle the servicing, you’re getting our highest level of customer service from the time you apply for your loan until you make your last payment, even if that’s 30 years down the line. We remain committed to you.” — Kevin Graham, Quicken Loans Zing! Blog

About Amerisave: Since its founding in 2002, AmeriSave has been committed to delivering an effortless online mortgage experience, funding over $55 billion in home loans. In addition to its all-in-one digital platform, as of 2010 AmeriSave also has a Third Party Original (TPO) division, which allows AmeriSave to provide mortgage loans for community banks, credit unions and mortgage brokers.

Why it deserves the award: AmeriSave offers a variety of loan repayment terms, giving borrowers flexibility to find the right choice for their upcoming home refinance. It only takes users a few minutes to get refinancing rates and pre qualify with AmeriSave. Borrowers simply answer a few questions to lock-in a quote, allowing customers to close on a home loan quickly and easily, without loan origination fees.

About Earnest: Arriving on the scene in 2013, Earnest has been disrupting student loan refinancing by presenting their mostly-millennial borrowers with their innovative lending philosophy.

In an NBC interview, Earnest CEO Louis Beryl explained what about Earnest’s lending model sets it apart from the competition.

“Our model and our software looks at every person as an individual, and that’s a big breakthrough in lending, that’s not how it’s done today.”

Earnest’s data-driven and holistic lending approach examines applicants' education, Linkedin profiles and savings practices in addition to more conventional criteria like credit score and debt to income ratio to determine potential borrowers’ loan eligibility and terms.

Why it deserves the award: Earnest’s Precision Pricing™ model allows borrowers to customize their terms built around their preferred monthly payment. Terms are offered at 1-3 month intervals, between 5-20 years. That’s a total of 180 term options, giving Earnest borrowers full control of their repayments - and over their finances as a whole.

About Credible: Credible is an online loan marketplace that provides fast and free initial responses, ideal for borrowers who need a loan and don’t know where to start.

Credible speeds up the process of searching for a loan, sending your application to multiple providers while running a soft credit check (which doesn’t affect credit rating). Credible returns up to 6 preliminary loan offers so it’s easy to compare options and then contact the lender directly to complete the loan process.

Why it deserves the award: Credible specializes in matching good credit borrowers with multiple lenders. The minimum credit score requirement for borrowers looking to apply with Credible is 680, this way Credible can offer a range of low rates and desirable terms to its applicants. Lenders who work with Credible offer low rates and fees, flexible terms, top-notch customer service and more.

About LendingTree: LendingTree was created with the specific goal of simplifying the loan research process for borrowers. Founded in 1996, LendingTree became a leader in online lending marketplaces, giving customers the ability to compare offers from several reputable lenders simultaneously.

Since its inception, LendingTree has facilitated over 65 million loan requests.

Why it deserves the award: LendingTree has a host of well-known lending institutions in its network and can provide customers with a range of loan options for a range of customer needs.

LendingTree is unique in that it specifically caters to customers with less-than-perfect credit scores. There is no minimum credit score to apply with LendingTree. That’s because their network of lenders provide loans to individuals with a wide range of financial backgrounds and needs.

About American Express: American Express isn’t just a credit card company. American Express has been in the financial services industry since 1850, and is known worldwide as a trusted name in consumer finance, with over 112 million business and consumer card members, 18 million American Express accepting merchants and 120 bank partners that connect globally to American Express Network in 130 different countries.

Among their broad range of financial offerings, American Express also provides online banking services.

Why it deserves the award: American Express’ banking services are 100% online, allowing customers to access their money around-the-clock from the comfort and safety of home. As an added layer of convenience, American Express cardholders who choose to bank with American Express can manage their bank and credit card accounts at the same time, streamlining customers’ financial management.

American Express offers accounts with no minimums, no monthly fees and 24/7 customer service. Convenience and minimal fees make American Express’s online bank account a good choice for people trying to manage their finances in a post-pandemic world.

About PetsBest: PetsBest was founded in 2005 by Dr. Jack Stephens, the father of pet insurance in North America. Dr. Stephens is a veterinarian who wanted to give pet owners more options besides “economic euthanasia” - the practice of putting down a beloved pet to avoid crippling veterinary costs. PetsBest allows pet owners to choose a policy based on their economic and coverage needs, helping more pets get the medical care they need to live long and healthy lives.

Why it deserves the award: PetsBest’s offerings are extensive, flexible and affordable, allowing pet owners the opportunity to get the exact coverage they want for their pet in a budget-friendly way.

PetsBest offers 3 core service packages: Essential, Plus, and Elite. The Elite plan is the most extensive. The prices of these plans are determined by the age and breed of the pet, geographical location and other criteria.

PetsBest also offers fixed-rate accident-only plans for $9 a month for dogs as well as wellness add-ons which cover preventative and therapeutic care.

About Pawp: Pawp takes a distinct approach to pet health and protection, offering an emergency fund rather than reimbursement for standard vet visits. For $19 per month, pet owners can access up to $3,000 in emergency protection. The fund pays out at most once per year, but can be used for up to six different pets in the same household.

Why it deserves the award: Unlike other options, with Pawp there’s no out-of-pocket expenses, as Pawp pays the vet directly so pet owners don’t have to. For pet owners who only want protection for emergency vet visits, Pawp provides a smart solution.

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Written byEliana Sagarin

Eliana is a writer, editor and pop-culture aficionado from Chicago. She writes for BestMoney and enjoys helping readers make sense of the options on the market.‎

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