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Union Bank home equity review

Offers no-annual-fee HELOCs with discounts, but it's only available in three Western states.

Union Bank has competitively priced HELOCs with rate discounts, but it doesn’t offer home equity loans and you must live in California, Oregon or Washington to apply.

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670

Minimum credit score

Only available in: CA, OR, WA

State availability

Details

Loan products offeredHELOC
Minimum credit score670
APR range3.24% - 18% APR
Repayment terms10-year draw and 20-year repayment
Loan limits$25,000 to $2,000,000
State availabilityOnly available in: CA, OR, WA

Our take on Union Bank

Union Bank may be a good option if you want a no-annual-fee HELOC, but its APR doesn’t appear as competitive as other banks. And to get a discounted rate, you have to maintain a deposit or investment account, with the best discounts going to borrowers who maintain high balances. This is standard practice across most lenders.

While the bank offers home equity lines of credit, it doesn’t offer home equity loans for those who’d rather have a lump-sum loan than a credit line.

Special discounts

Union Bank offers the following interest rate discounts to existing banking customers and new customers who set their accounts up before closing:

  • 0.25% discount if you set up automatic payments from a Union Bank checking or savings account prior to closing.
  • 0.50% discount if you’re a Priority Banking client, which requires opening a Priority Checking account and maintaining a $25,000 balance.
  • 0.75% discount for being a client of The Private Bank that maintains a minimum balance of at least $250,000 in deposits and investments.
  • 1% discount for being a client of The Private Bank that maintains a minimum balance of $1 million or more.

What kind of home equity products does Union Bank offer?

Union Bank offers two types of HELOCs, both allowing you to borrow between $25,000 and $2 million.

  1. FlexEquity HELOC. A traditional HELOC revolving credit line with a 10-year draw period and 30-year repayment and no annual fee.
  2. 7-year initial fixed rate HELOC. This option fixes your rate for the first seven years of your draw period, only moving to a variable rate for the last three years. Your fixed rate is based on your credit limit, and your variable rate is based on your credit limit and your combined loan-to-value ratio (CLTV).

Pros and cons of Union Bank

Pros

  • No annual fee. Union Bank doesn’t charge an annual fee on its HELOC product.
  • Relationship discounts. Union Bank offers three different relationship discounts on its HELOC product, which allow you to take up to 1% off your APR, depending on what kind of deposit and investment accounts you have with the lender.
  • Fixed-rate option. Allows you to lock in a fixed rate for the first seven years while still getting the benefits of a revolving credit line.
  • No application fee. You won’t pay a fee to apply for your HELOC.

Cons

  • No home equity loans. Union Bank doesn’t offer home equity loans for borrowers looking for a lump-sum loan instead of a line of credit.
  • Limited state availability. HELOCs and mortgages are only available in California, Oregon and Washington.
  • Origination fees. Borrowers with high credit lines must pay third-party fees on their HELOCs at the time of opening — sometimes costing thousands of dollars.
  • No online application. Use the online contact form to request contact from a HELOC specialist, but Union Bank doesn’t let you apply online.

Union Bank requirements are standard

To find out if you’re eligible for a Union Bank HELOC, call to speak to a loan officer. Basic eligibility for a mortgage with the company includes:

  • Residency in CA, OR or WA.
  • Two years’ history of employment.
  • A FICO credit score of at least 670.
  • No history of bankruptcy in the past two years.

Fees are similar to Union Bank’s competitors

This table shows the fees and costs that Union Bank charges on its HELOCs.

Fee typeCharged?Close
Application feeNo$0
Annual feeNo$0
Origination/third-party feesYesFor the FlexEquity HELOC:
  • None for HELOCs under $1 million
  • Pay all third-party fees for HELOCs greater than $1 million

For 7-year fixed rate HELOC:

  • Up to $150 for HELOCs of $250,000 or less
  • $150 to $4,500+ for HELOCs greater than $250,000
Prepayment penaltyYes$450 early closure fee, if the line is closed within three years of opening

Union Bank reviews and complaints

BBB rating A+
Trustpilot rating Average
Customer reviews verified as of 22 May 2022

As of May 2022, Union Bank has a 3.1 out of 5 rating on Wallethub from 474 reviewers. Union Bank isn’t accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB), but it has an A+ business rating. Twenty-seven customers have left mostly negative reviews on the BBB site related to bank accounts, with a few customers complaining of misinformation during the mortgage application process.

Trustpilot gives it a slightly higher TrustScore of 2.8, but none of the four reviews has anything to do with their mortgages or HELOCs.

Unhappy banking customers complain of poor service, long telephone hold times and broken technology. A few HELOC customers have complained of broken promises.

How to get a home equity loan with Union Bank

Union Bank doesn’t allow you to apply online. To apply, call the bank’s HELOC line at 877-286-3421. Or select Get started on the website, fill out the contact form and wait for a Union Bank loan officer to contact you.

Documentation

Be prepared to provide the following documents with your loan application:

  • State-issued ID
  • Pay stubs for the last two months
  • W-2s for the past two years
  • Profit and loss (P&L) statements and balance sheets for the past two years for self-employed persons
  • Homeowners insurance declaration page
  • Last month’s mortgage statement

Other home loan products Union Bank offers

Union Bank also offers these types of mortgage products:

  • Conventional loans. Choose from adjustable- and fixed-rate mortgages with varying interest rates and term lengths.
  • Government-backed loans. Union Bank offers FHA and VA loans for first-time homebuyers and veterans.
  • Fannie Mae’s HomeReady. A loan program for first-time homebuyers starting at 3% down.
  • Jumbo loans. Eligible buyers may borrow up to $5 million, and alternative lending criteria may be considered.
  • Mortgage refinance. Replace your current mortgage with a new one that has a better rate and terms.

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