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Bank of America HELOC review

Reduce your interest rate by setting up autopay and being a Preferred Rewards member.

finder.com’s rating: 3.9 / 5.0

★★★★★

This Big Four bank offers HELOCs from $25,000 up to $1 million and $500,000 on second homes. It also rewards eligible customers with rate discounts — but look out for climbing APRs and early closure fees.

Details

Loan products offeredHELOC
Minimum credit score620
APR range1.99% to 24%
Repayment terms10 year draw and 20 year repayment
Loan limits$25,000 to $1 million
State availabilityAvailable in all states

Pros and cons of Bank of America

Pros

  • Low fees. This bank covers the closing costs on lines of credit up to $1 million and doesn’t charge application or annual fees. You also won’t pay a fee for converting to a variable-rate balance.
  • Speedy online application. Bank of America claims the online application takes 15 minutes or less.
  • Live chat feature. During business hours, reach a rep via online chat.
  • Fixed-rate option. For more predictable payments, convert all or part of your variable-rate balance to a fixed-rate without paying a conversion fee.
  • HELOCs on secondary residences. Take out a line of credit up to $500,000 on your second or vacation home.
  • Large physical presence. The bank has 4,000 branches nationwide. If you prefer to do your banking in person, there’s a good chance there will be a loan officer near you.

Cons

  • Online application can be confusing. With a few repetitive fields, it could use an edit.
  • High maximum APR. The bank says your APR won’t exceed 24% over your loan’s lifetime. Other banks, like Wells Fargo, keep lifetime interest rates under 7%.
  • Early closure fee. If you close your account within 36 months, you’ll be slapped with a $450 base fee, plus any mortgage and government taxes, recording fees and closing costs Bank of America paid on your behalf. This fee doesn’t apply to Texas HELOCs.

What types of fees does Bank of America charge?

Bank of America doesn’t charge application fees, closing costs or annual fees. You also don’t need to pay a fee to convert what you owe on your HELOC to a fixed-rate loan.

Bank of America requirements

The bank is tight-lipped about its eligibility requirements, though it does say borrowers need a combined loan-to-value ratio of 80% or less. And the site suggests the best rates are reserved for Preferred Rewards customers who set up automatic payments from their Bank of America checking account.

Documentation

The application will ask for the following information:

  • Social Security number for you and your coborrower if you have one
  • Employment and income information
  • Property type and location
  • Estimated value of the property
  • Mortgage balance
  • Details about your homeowners insurance and property taxes
  • Driver’s license or government-issued photo ID

How to apply for a home equity loan with Bank of America

To start your online application, follow these steps:

  1. Navigate to the Bank of America website’s Home Equity page and select Getting Started.
  2. Provide your personal information. If you’re a Bank of America customer, log in to auto-fill your application. Otherwise, choose Continue.
  3. Enter additional personal information, including your employment information, income and financial assets. Select Continue.
  4. Add details about the property’s location, its estimated value, how much you’d like to borrow and the property’s main use, such as a primary residence or vacation home. Hit Continue.
  5. View HELOC offers tailored to you and select any you’d like to apply to your application.
  6. Review your application details, upload any necessary documents and submit your application. A home loan officer will take over the application and reach out about the next steps.

To apply over the phone, call 866-290-4674 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. or Saturday from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. ET. Or, hop online to schedule an appointment at a financial center.

What types of home equity products does Bank of America offer?

This bank only offers a HELOC option to access your home’s equity. But you can convert what you draw on your HELOC account into a fixed-rate loan lasting anywhere from one year to the maturity date of the HELOC’s repayment term. The minimum you can convert is $5,000, and you may convert during your draw or repayment period.

Other mortgage products offered by Bank of America

Bank of America offers the following mortgage product options:

  • Conventional
  • FHA
  • VA
  • Jumbo
  • Mortgage refinance loans
  • Affordable Loan Solution mortgage
  • Freddie Mac Home Possible mortgage

How Bank of America’s home equity products compare to other lenders

This bank’s HELOC program has several features that set it apart from other lenders of its size.

  • HELOC range. Borrow up to $1 million on your primary residence in some areas, which is double the maximum of most major banks.
  • Introductory rate. Bank of America offers a discounted introductory rate for the first six months of your HELOC equal to .76% off the prime rate. Once the six months are over, the rate will increase.
  • Interest rate discounts. Earn interest rate discounts if you’re a Bank of America customer and sign up for automatic withdrawal payments from an eligible account. Additional discounts are based on whether you’re enrolled in the Preferred Rewards program and how much you initially withdraw from the credit line.

Bank of America’s interest rate discounts

There’s no fee to join or participate in Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards program. Your tier is based on your qualifying combined balances in your banking and investment accounts.

Preferred Rewards programGold tier — .125% discount
Platinum tier — .250% discount
Platinum Honors tier — .375% discount
Automatic withdrawal payments.25% discount
Initial withdrawals.05% interest rate discount on each $10,000 draw, up to .75% for withdrawing $60,000 or more.

Compare Bank of America HELOC to other lenders

Compare your options by loan type, state availability and minimum credit score. Select See rates to provide the company with basic property and financial details for personalized rates.

Bank of America vs. Discover

Compare home equity loan and HELOC options

Compare these lenders and lender marketplaces by the type of home equity product you're searching for, state availability and minimum credit score. Select See rates to provide the company with basic property and financial details for personalized rates.
Name Product Loan products offered State availability Min. credit score
SoFi
(NMLS #1121636)
SoFi
Conventional, Home equity, Refinance
Not available in: HI, MO, NM, NY, WV
620
No hidden fees, multiple loan terms, and member discounts available.
Figure
(NMLS #1717824)
Figure
HELOC
Not available in: DE, HI, KY, MD, NY, SC, TX, UT, WV
620
Speedy prequalification, minimal fees and a wide range of loans and terms with this HELOC lender.
LendingTree
(NMLS #1136)
LendingTree
HELOC, Home Equity loans
Available in all states
620
Connect with vetted lenders quickly through this free online marketplace.
Hometap Equity Partners
Hometap Equity Partners
Home equity investment
Only available in: AZ, CA, FL, MA, MD, MI, MN, NC, NJ, NY, OR, PA, VA, WA
600
Sell a portion of your home's equity for cash without monthly payments or hurting your credit score.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Bank of America reviews and complaints

Bank of America is accredited with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and as of May 2021 holds an A+ rating for its customer interaction. The BBB has recorded over 5,700 complaints in the last three years, all of which were addressed by the banking giant.

Customers awarded the bank 1.09 stars out of 5 based on 447 reviews — standard for a traditional bank with several arms. That said, these reviews aren’t specific to the home loans division.

On TrustPilot, Bank of America has a 1.3-star TrustScore based on 726 reviews. Customers praised the bank’s nationwide physical presence and personalized service, while many others complained about their experience with customer service, slow closings on mortgages and unexpected fees.

Our verdict

Bank of America is for borrowers looking for high-dollar HELOCs. It offers loans up to $1 million or up to 85% of the value of your home — more than many other lenders. But if you’re looking for a low maximum interest rate, BOA is not your bank. Its lifetime interest rates are capped at 24%, well above the 7% rate from Wells Fargo and other banks.

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Review by


Katia Iervasi is a staff writer who hails from Australia and now calls New York home. Her writing and analysis has been featured on sites like Forbes, Best Company and Financial Advisor around the world. Armed with a BA in Communication and a journalistic eye for detail, she navigates insurance and finance topics for Finder, so you can splash your cash smartly (and be a pro when the subject pops up at dinner parties).

Expert review

Bank of America is for borrowers looking for high-dollar HELOCs. It offers loans up to $1 million or up to 85% of the value of your home — more than other lenders. But if you’re looking for a low maximum interest rate, BOA is not your bank — its lifetime interest rates are capped at 24%.

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