Let me clarify:
I said use lending tree to solely get a quality rating on the service the lenders local and/or licensed in your area provide. Not necessarily to go through them for financing. With regards to the additional fee, lets be honest, especially since I use to work for a broker, and then a direct lender with a lending tree dept, that charge is typically 200-500 hundreds. No more than what a local broker who is originating its loan through a direct lender would charge. And, again, I only recommend this is if you are not working with a knowledgeable and experience enough realtor to refer you to a lender.