Knock GO Guaranteed Offer Review

Knock GO (Guaranteed Offer) Review for 2023

Editorial note: This post is not sponsored and was not requested by Knock or its affiliates.

What is Knock GO (Guaranteed Offer)?

Knock GO stands for Guaranteed Offer, a program that’s meant to give first-time buyers a leg up in competitive markets.

It lets first-time homebuyers make what’s essentially a cash offer on a home, even though they don’t have cash themselves.

Knock fully pre-approves the buyer. The homebuyer then starts making non-contingent offers, ones that don’t rely on a finalized loan to close. 

While not exactly a cash offer, Knock GO comes close. And according to Redfin, a cash offer is four times more likely to be accepted by the seller.

First-time buyers who keep losing out on their favorite homes to cash offers might consider using this relatively new way of buying a home that’s gaining in popularity daily.

Check your homebuying eligibility.

How does Knock GO (Guaranteed Offer) work?

Knock is a company that agrees to purchase the home on your behalf if it can’t close on time.

It requires that you get a full pre-approval before making offers. This means that you submit your employment, income, and asset documentation. Knock will also pull your credit.

Any issues that come up are handled ahead of time so that (hopefully) there are no surprises after you’ve found a home. The loan is essentially 100% approved, minus the property itself.

Once pre-approved, you are free to make a “non-contingent” offer, meaning that you agree to close even if the loan isn’t complete by the closing date. If something goes wrong with the loan that is Knock’s fault, they will purchase the home with their cash and close the loan later.

The seller, in effect, gets a cash offer, improving your chances of getting the house.

What is Knock? Is it legit?

The company is a mortgage lender, but instead of focusing on its service, fees, or rates, it goes all-in on the idea that getting an accepted offer is the buyer’s #1 priority.

This focus makes sense. Many mortgage companies say they can close on time, but Knock is one of the few that will back it up with cash if the loan falls through.

The 2020-2021 housing market was likely the fiercest on record. Those without a huge down payment or all cash had little chance of getting an accepted offer.

Knock GO attempts to give previously disadvantaged buyers – those just entering the market – a tool to potentially land their first home.

It’s also a legitimate company, licensed to do mortgages in 18 states plus the District of Columbia. This says a lot about the company. It’s no easy task to get mortgage licenses in multiple states, which I can safely say after helping a former company get licensed in 49 states.

The company is also financially backed by some big names, including Second Century Ventures, the investing arm of the National Association of Realtors®.

Knock Guaranteed Offer risks

Knock’s GO program is not without risks.

For the sake of argument, say you make an offer on a home without a financing contingency. This means you can’t back out without losing your earnest money if the loan falls through.

Then, two weeks after the accepted offer, you get laid off. You can’t find another job. Lending rules state you can’t close on a loan unless you’re employed, since that’s the basis of your income.

Because Knock didn’t cause the issue, your guaranteed closing will be revoked, according to Knock’s website.

The Knock Guarantee Caveat

Keep in mind that if an issue occurs that it outside of Knock’s control, such as a job loss, it can revoke its guarantee and you could lose your earnest money.

Other issues could derail the “guarantee”: an issue pops up on your credit report, the appraisal comes in low, or the condominium can’t be approved by Fannie Mae. 

There are a lot of things that can go wrong with a loan, and Knock’s guarantee only applies to problems within its control.

So, even though you can make a non-contingent offer using Knock GO, you could still lose the home and your earnest money.

That being said, over the past few years, many buyers have made offers without a financing contingency even without a special program.

So, while not foolproof, the GO program at least removes the consequences of a lender screw-up.

Knock GO mortgage rates and fees

Knock one-ups most competing companies when it comes to fees.

Because it’s a lender, its strategy is to make money on the transaction, not the cash offer program itself. According to its website, Knock GO requires a $1,450 lender fee, which covers typical lender fees like loan application, processing, and underwriting fees. That’s about what you would pay with most lenders.

Competitors like Ribbon, charge a 1% fee unless you use a partner lender.

Cash Offer ProgramFees
Knock GO$1,450 lender fee which covers typical lender charges
Better Cash Offer1.25%-4% of sales price depending on lender/agent used
Ribbon1% of sales price unless partner lender used
OrchardPaid via real estate commissions
Accept.incSimilar to Knock’s model: Only typical lender fees apply

It’s more difficult to predict Knock’s mortgage rates. It offers “competitive” rates according to its website, but every lender says that.

Despite Knock’s cash offer program, it’s still a good idea to get quotes from 3-4 lenders to make sure Knock’s rates are truly competitive. If you don’t need a cash-like offer (i.e. your market is not very competitive), you are probably fine using a traditional mortgage lender.

Knock GO reviews and analysis

BBB Reviews

Knock, as a company, has pretty good reviews. It’s rated as a “B+” company by the Better Business Bureau with 4.53/5 stars and 11 complaints filed in the past three years (all of which have been resolved by Knock). It’s not a “BBB accredited business” but keep in mind that the BBB charges a fee for accreditation review

Reviews on BBB are mostly regarding Knock’s primary service, Home Swap, in which homeowners can buy a home before selling their current one. But it’s similar, in that a homebuyer can make a non-contingent offer.

Most reviewers were pleased with Knock’s performance. A few real estate agents even left reviews about their clients’ ability to secure a home when they may not have been able to without the service.

The complaints about the company, again, were mostly regarding Home Swap. Still, they were regarding lending mishaps, so they are relevant to the GO program. Many of the complaints you might find for any mortgage lender, but there are some concerning reports:

  • Failure to complete the correct process for a property in a flood zone.
  • Non-communicative about the true progress of the loan file.
  • Non-responsiveness of staff.

While some of the complaints are disturbing, they likely don’t represent Knock’s competence as a lender overall, judging by the predominance of positive reviews.

Zillow reviews

Knock currently has over 700 reviews on Zillow with a rating of 4.8/5 stars. The positive reviews appear to be legitimate and from actual customers. Most of them praise a Knock team member for guiding them through the process successfully.

The negative reviews mainly revolve around Knock’s more popular program Home Swap. Many of the complaints are about delays and disorganization. One customer stated that their morning routine was to wake up and take care of all the new requests coming from Knock. 

It should be noted, though, that Home Swap is vastly more complex than Knock GO. Selling a house and buying another simultaneously involves a lot more moving pieces than the Knock GO program, which is essentially just a guaranteed pre-approval.

Overall, it’s hard to fake a 4.8-star rating with over 700 reviews. While there’s no guarantee you’ll have a good experience with Knock, the odds are in your favor, at least for the Knock GO program.

Knock service areas

Knock is not available nationwide. It’s available in the following markets as of January 2023. 

ArizonaPhoenix, Prescott, Tucson, Yuma
CaliforniaBakersfield, Los Angeles, Orange County, Riverside-Palm Springs, San Bernardino, San Diego, Santa Barbara, Ventura
ColoradoColorado Springs, Denver, Boulder, Ft. Collins, Greeley
FloridaCape Coral-Fort Myers, Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Lakeland-Winter Haven, Miami, Naples-Marco Island, Bradenton-North Port-Sarasota, Orlando, Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, Port St. Lucie, Punta Gorda, Sabastian-Vero Beach, Tampa, The Villages, West Palm Beach
GeorgiaAtlanta, Athens-Clarke County, Gainesville, Dalton, Rome
MichiganDetroit, Ann Arbor, Flint, Monroe
MinnesotaDuluth, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Rochester, St. Cloud
North CarolinaCharlotte, Raleigh-Durham, Burlington, Hickory
OregonPortland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, Eugene-Springfield, Salem, Albany-Lebanon, Corvallis
South CarolinaCharleston, Columbia, Greenville, Spartanburg
TennesseeKnoxville, Memphis, Nashville
TexasAustin, DFW, Houston, San Antonio, Sherman-Denison
WashingtonSeattle-Tacoma, Bellingham, Mount Vernon-Anacortes, Bremerton-Silverdale-Port Orchard, Olympia-Lacey-Tumwater, Longview

Knock GO loan types, down payment, and credit score

One of the big drawbacks of Knock as a lender is that it only offers conventional and jumbo financing. 

Many buyers whose credit, income, or employment are less-than-perfect often need FHA financing. Also, those with military service history are typically better off using VA financing over conventional or jumbo, because they are eligible for zero down payment and no mortgage insurance.

Knock requires a 3% down minimum and a credit score above 620. The best rates go to those with 680+ scores.

Bottom line: Do I even need a program like Knock GO?

The biggest question of all is whether programs like Knock GO are needed in a changing market.

As mortgage rates rise, homebuyers are leaving the market. There are no longer 10-20 offers on each home in most areas. The buyer has more bargaining power.

Whether you need a program like Knock GO depends on competition for homes in your area. Those in cooler markets, or homebuyers going after a home that’s been sitting, may not need a service like Guaranteed Offer. Just go in with an offer that is contingent on financing. If the seller has no other offers, yours is likely to be accepted anyway.

You could still use Knock as a lender, sure, and even use the GO program. However, I would advise talking to your real estate agent about going in with a contingent offer anyway. This protects you in case there’s an issue with the loan that is outside of Knock’s control (the appraisal comes in low, you get laid off, etc.)

I think we’ll see programs like Knock Go, Better Cash Offer, and Ribbon remain available, but needed less and less as the market turns more toward the buyer’s favor.

Knock GO Reviews FAQ

Is Knock a scam?

No, Knock is a legitimate company that offers its GO (Guaranteed Offer) program, a cash-backed home offer. It’s licensed in multiple states and has over 700 reviews on Zillow, mostly positive.

What is the Knock Home Swap program?

First-time homebuyers won’t use Knock Home Swap, since it helps you buy a home before selling your current home. New buyers can use Knock GO, in which Knock will purchase the home with its cash before the loan closes, under some conditions.

How much does Knock GO cost?

Knock is a mortgage lender and makes its money from the loan itself. According to its website, Knock charges a $1,450 administrative fee, which covers things like loan processing and underwriting. This cost is comparable to most mortgage lenders.

Consider all your options

While Knock GO is an innovative program, it’s wise to check rates, fees, and other programs from various lenders.

More and more lenders are coming out with their own cash-backed offer programs, and many of those lenders may have more experience in the industry than Knock, which started in 2015.

Still, Knock appears to have served many first-time buyers well so far, so your chances of having a good experience are high.

Check your homebuying eligibility.


  • Tim Lucas

    Tim Lucas (NMLS 118763) has 20 years of hands-on mortgage industry experience helping everyone from first-time buyers to experienced investors. He purchased his first home at 26 with just $1,100 out-of-pocket and now owns real estate worth $2.4 million. Tim was the managing editor at national websites and and has been featured in publications such as Time, U.S. News, MSN, and more. He is a licensed loan originator (NMLS 118763). Connect with Tim on LinkedIn, Twitter, and TikTok.