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A new report from Mastercard-backed data company Finicity has shed light on an uncomfortable perspective for the lending industry: As frustrating as the homebuying experience can be in today’s torrid, ultracompetitive marketplace, applying for a loan may be even worse.

That’s the big takeaway from the firm’s “High Demand, Higher Hurdles in the Mortgage Market” report, which revealed that 89% of respondents to a survey believe that the loan application process was just as stressful or even moreso as buying a home. To zero in on a current picture of both buying and financing, the survey was focused on the consumer experience of homebuyers and borrowers since April 2020.

“Buying a home should be exciting, not frustrating. said Andy Sheehan, president and COO of Finicity. “And the loan process can be a seamless end to the home buying or refinancing experience. In this digital era, mounds of paperwork and lengthy processes should be a thing of the past. Many lenders do offer a partial digital loan process today, but that doesn’t mean that the customer experience is always better. Friction in the process can still remain.”

Indeed, many of the pain points identified by participants in the study are tied to consumer perceptions that parts of the lending process are behind the times compared to other financial transactions. Seventy-two percent of respondents, for example, were surprised or very surprised at the volume of paper processes that still take place in various stages of acquiring a mortgage.