Is home equity assistance right for me?
The goal of a home equity loan modification is to help you with a financial hardship. Depending on your current financial situation, you may qualify for a modification of your term, interest rate or monthly payments, or a combination of two or more of these loan provisions.
You may be eligible for Bank of America Home Equity Assistance if:
Your home equity account has been open for at least nine months
You haven't received home equity assistance once in the past 12 months, or twice in the past five years
You're experiencing a financial hardship, such as reduced income or divorce
You're able to repay the loan
If you're not eligible, you may still have options. You may qualify for other forms of home equity assistance, including:
- Repayment plans of up to 12 months to help you catch up on past due payments
- Payment extensions of one to three months
Call us to learn more.
How do I get started with home equity assistance?
Now that I'm in the process, what's next?
I've called to request home equity assistance
Before you call, please have your home equity loan or line of credit number and gather the following information for everyone listed on your home equity loan or line of credit:
- Monthly income — have both your pre-tax (gross) income and take-home income (net or after taxes) amounts available
- All household expenses, such as food, utilities and Internet
- Account balances on all other debts, such as student loans and car loans
- An explanation of your financial hardship
During the call, we'll review your situation with you.
Throughout the process, you'll be paired with a Customer Relationship Manager who will answer any questions you may have and help guide you through the steps you'll need to take.
I’ve received my financial information packet
We'll confirm the financial information you gave us over the phone by verifying it with data from the credit bureaus.
You'll be asked to collect a set of documents for everyone listed on the loan. These documents include:
- A signed copy of the most recently filed federal tax return
- Copies of the most recent consecutive pay stubs covering two months
- If anyone listed on the loan is receiving unemployment benefits, any combination of bank statements, direct deposits or cancelled checks to support receipt of unemployment income for the past two months
- If anyone listed on the loan is self-employed, a copy of the most recent quarterly or year-to-date profit/loss statement
- Copies of account statements on all other debts, such as student loans and car loans
After we receive all your documents, we'll determine if you qualify for home equity assistance.
Important: To avoid any unnecessary delays, please mail or fax all required documents to us as soon as possible.
I'm currently in a Trial Period Plan
All customers who qualify for home equity assistance are required to complete a trial period of at least three months.
Once you're qualified, you’ll receive a letter outlining the trial payment amount and payment due dates.
Your trial period payment will be an estimate of what the initial monthly payment amount will be if you complete the trial period and enter into a permanent modification agreement.
Important: You must make all trial period payments on or before the due date in order to receive a permanent modification.
If you don't successfully complete the trial period, please contact your Customer Relationship Manager to discuss options that may be available to you.
I've received a Modification Agreement
If you successfully make your trial period payments, you’ll receive a Modification Agreement defining the changes to your home equity loan or home equity line of credit.
- Continue making your trial payments until you receive official notification from us
- Sign and return your Modification Agreement, and all other required documents, as soon as possible. Your modification can't be made permanent until we receive your signed documents.
Home Loan Assistance Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. When you call our specialists, be sure to ask the representative to evaluate both your first mortgage and your home equity loan or home equity line of credit. Your Customer Relationship Manager will go over your financial information with you and compare it to all available loan assistance solutions. If you qualify, we can help you modify both your first mortgage and your home equity account.
Yes. If you qualify, we'll help you modify the home equity loan or home equity line of credit that you have with us. If you're facing a financial hardship, we also recommend that you contact your first mortgage servicer about modifying or refinancing that loan.
Yes, but only through one of our own Bank of America programs that you may qualify for. In order to modify your home equity loan or home equity line of credit through the government’s Home Affordable Second Lien Modification Program, you must first complete a modification of your first mortgage under the government's Home Affordable Modification Program.
Yes. Staying current on your payments is the best way to maintain your credit. If you enter into a modification, your credit may be negatively affected. Your loan will be reported as "paying under a partial payment plan" during the trial period, and as "modified" after the final modification agreement. In addition, if you’re behind on your payments when you start your trial period, your loan will continue to be reported as delinquent until it has been permanently modified, even if you're making your trial period payments. A modification is intended to enable you to keep your home, not repair your credit.
Credit scores are determined by the credit bureaus and not controlled directly by Bank of America. Our commitment is to accurately report the status of all our customers.
Please call us. If it's the right option for you, we’ll provide you with additional information and documents to initiate a short sale.
If you can no longer afford to make your mortgage payments and your house is worth less than you owe, a short sale allows you to sell your house at the current fair market value. You then have the option to move to a more affordable situation. Because the proceeds from the sale may not pay off all that you owe, the investor or owner of your loan must approve the sale. Depending on your situation, you may be eligible for a deficiency waiver. In that case, you won’t be required to repay any remaining loan balance after the sale.