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12 cities where clients can save big on mortgages

Never take the first offer.

It's a general rule to tell clients who are navigating the homebuying process, however its one rule that is often overlooked when they shop for a mortgage.

"Once people identify the house they want, they just want to get it done. The mortgage is an afterthought," says Tendayi Kapfidze, chief economist at LendingTree. "It’s a complex financial transaction and people are intimidated. They already have so many other things to think of with the home purchase itself. The mortgage is thought of in a more binary way that either gets approved or doesn’t. They don't think about the cost of it as much as they should."

Here's a look at the 12 housing markets where borrowing clients can save the most over the life of their loan by shopping around for a mortgage, according to LendingTree.

The data is ranked by the interest savings over the lifetime of 30-year fixed-rate mortgages on an analysis across 50 metro areas, based on rates from the week ending May 5. The Mortgage Rate Competition Index measures the basis point spread between high and low APRs offered to users through the LendingTree marketplace.

No. 12 Portland, Oregon
Lifetime interest savings: $34,812
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.64
Median loan amount: $260,000
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No. 11 Charlotte, North Carolina
Lifetime interest savings: $35,199
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.67
Median loan amount: $247,500
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No. 10 Salt Lake City
Lifetime interest savings: $36,538
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.67
Median loan amount: $260,000
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No. 9 Boston
Lifetime interest savings: $36,943
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.6
Median loan amount: $292,500
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No. 8 New York
Lifetime interest savings: $36,987
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.64
Median loan amount: $276,250
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No. 7 Minneapolis
Lifetime interest savings: $37,313
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.66
Median loan amount: $268,125
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No. 6 Los Angeles, Calif.
Lifetime interest savings: $37,732
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.6
Median loan amount: $300,000
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No. 5 Albuquerque, New Mexico
Lifetime interest savings: $40,271
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.75
Median loan amount: $255,000
Albuquerque
No. 4 Seattle
Lifetime interest savings: $41,306
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.65
Median loan amount: $255,000
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No. 3 Denver
Lifetime interest savings: $42,123
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.68
Median loan amount: $292,500
Denver
No. 2 San Diego
Lifetime interest savings: $42,780
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.68
Median loan amount: $297,500
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No. 1 San Francisco
Lifetime interest savings: $44,028
Mortgage Rate Competition Index: 0.63
Median loan amount: $332,500
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