Is mortgage refinancing right for me?
Common goals of refinancing your home loan are to help make your monthly mortgage payments more affordable by refinancing to a lower interest rate or switching from an adjustable-rate into a fixed-rate loan.
You may be eligible for traditional refinancing if:
- You're current on your home loan payments
- You have at least 5% equity for most loans, or at least 2.25% if you have a Bank of America FHA mortgage. (Please note that the amount can vary depending upon your circumstances.)
You'll also need to meet other criteria such as credit, loan to value and debt to income ratio requirements. Please ask for details.
If you think you're not eligible for a traditional refinance but have been current on your home loan payments for at least the past six months, you may still qualify for mortgage refinancing through the Home Affordable Refinance Program.
Get more details about the steps of mortgage refinancing.
How do I get started with refinancing?
Now that I'm in the process, what's next?
Call to request a traditional refinance.
Before you call, to save time, gather some financial information that we'll be asking you for. Please have handy the following for everyone listed on your home loan:
- Pay stubs or, if self-employed, quarterly or year-to-date profit/loss statement
- Bank statements for all checking and savings accounts
- Tax return
During the call, we'll discuss your situation, pull a credit report for all applications and tell you about key deadlines.
I’ve submitted my financial information and received my welcome package.
After the call, we'll send you a welcome package containing:
- A copy of your completed loan application
- A Good Faith Estimate document that spells out the settlement costs associated with the loan
- A Truth in Lending Disclosure Statement
We may also provide a one-page Clarity Commitment® summary1 that clearly shows key loan terms, is written in plain language and is designed to help you understand the loan you're applying for.
Important: Once you receive your welcome package, review your completed loan application to make sure that everything is correct. You should also compare the proposed loan terms to your current loan. If the proposed payments aren't an improvement over what you pay now, and you're not refinancing to lock in a fixed rate, refinancing may not be right for you.
If you qualify, we'll call you to let you know that you‘ve received conditional approval. We may ask you to send us additional information if it's needed. To avoid any delays, please provide any additional information we request as soon as possible.
We'll also order a home appraisal to determine your home’s market value.
If you’re experiencing a financial hardship, you may qualify for more affordable payments under the Home Affordable Modification Program.
I’m awaiting final approval.
We'll begin reviewing and verifying your information. We'll need to:
- Review the property appraisal with your credit history and overall financial situation to make a decision whether to approve your loan request.
The review process may take approximately 75 days from your initial call. We'll contact you regularly during this time to update you on your status. You can also check the status of your application online at any time.
Important: Be sure to continue making your normal mortgage payments until you sign the loan documents and your refinance takes effect.
My refinance has been approved.
If your loan is approved, you’ll receive a phone call from us to schedule the closing. This will be a similar process to the one you went through when you purchased your home.
At the closing, you and any co-borrowers will need to:
- Sign a full set of loan documents
- Pay for closing costs, unless some or all of the costs are financed into the loan amount
1Clarity Commitment is a registered trademark of Bank of America, N.A.
Home Loan Assistance Frequently Asked Questions
Refinancing may make your monthly mortgage payments more affordable by reducing your interest rate, extending your loan repayment period or a combination of both.2 If you choose a fixed-rate mortgage, you'll have a stable interest rate for the life of the loan.
Yes. They can include closing costs, points and application fees. We may let you roll these costs into the total mortgage amount to reduce the cash you must bring to closing.3
Depending on the type of loan, credit score and other factors, you can typically finance up to 80 - 95% of the appraised value of your home, or 97.75% if you have an FHA loan. However, the amount can vary depending on your circumstances. Equity is the property's current market value minus how much you still owe.
If you were denied home loan assistance, such as a request for a loan modification, short sale or deed in lieu you may be able to dispute the decision. You can file an escalated case with us if you have reason to believe any of the following are true:
- You met all the criteria for home loan assistance but were not properly evaluated for assistance or were improperly denied assistance. This may include:
- You did not receive adequate notice from us about your foreclosure alternatives
- You were not given appropriate time to respond to communications from us during your loan review process
- Your loan was referred to foreclosure prematurely, or we did not suspend foreclosure activities when we were required to do so
You can also file an escalated case if either of these two specific concerns apply to your loan:
- You have a reasonable belief that your mortgage loan is being serviced in a fraudulent manner
- You have retained a lawyer to help you resolve a mortgage dispute with Bank of America
If you have reason to believe that any of the above apply in connection with your loan review and affected your eligibility for home loan assistance, you may file an escalated case with us to review your concerns.
Please note that inquiries about a pending request for home loan assistance or general questions about the servicing of your mortgage do not meet the requirements for an escalated case. For general servicing questions, please call 1.800.669.6607 (Monday-Friday, 7 a.m.-7 p.m. local time).
To file an escalated case, you or any third party representing you, such as a housing counselor or attorney, should send us a brief letter describing the specific reasons you believe one of the above scenarios applies to your loan or to your application for home loan assistance. If you are represented by an attorney, please have your lawyer submit this request on your behalf.
Escalated case requests must be sent by mail to the following address:
- Bank of America Corporate Center
Attn: BAC Escalated Case Unit
P.O. Box 940508
Simi Valley, CA 93094-0508
Please note that if a third party, such as an advisor or a nonprofit advocate, contacts us to submit an escalated case on your behalf, we must have your written authorization before we can communicate with them about you or your loan. Without your written authorization, we will not be able to discuss your home loan with them. We can provide you with an authorization form upon request.
What to expect after submitting your request
Within three business days after receipt:
- If your submission meets the requirements for an escalated case, within three business days of the receipt of your request, we will send you a written acknowledgement that we have received your request. This acknowledgement will also include the estimated date by which your escalated case should be resolved, along with a toll-free number for the Escalated Case Unit.
Within 15 calendar days after receipt:
- In most cases, within 15 calendar days of receiving your request, we will mail you a written response describing the proposed resolution of your request and any next steps to be followed by you or by us. If your matter cannot be resolved within 15 calendar days, we will notify you of the delay and give you a new estimated resolution date. This new estimated resolution date, in most cases, will be no longer than 30 calendar days from the date we received your original escalated case.
Checking the status of your escalated case
Your written confirmation will include a toll-free number you can call for information about your escalated case.
1Clarity Commitment is a registered trademark of Bank of America, N.A.
2If you are refinancing to lower your monthly payment or change from a variable rate to a fixed-rate loan, you should carefully consider the potential increase in the total number of monthly payments and/or the total interest charges paid over the full term of the new refinance loan – especially for borrowers who currently have loans with terms less than 30 years.
3The relative benefits of financing closing costs by adding them into the loan balance depend on your individual circumstances and the length of time you own your home. Choosing to finance the closing costs may be beneficial if you plan to sell your home before the breakeven point. If you retain your home after the breakeven point, you will increase the total amount paid compared to paying the closing costs upfront. Discuss this analysis with your mortgage loan advisor to help you make an informed decision. Underwriting guidelines may limit the amount of closing costs which may be financed. Other restrictions apply. Ask for details.