Best HELOC rates in California

34 Replies

Hello all, I currently have a checking and savings account with Citibank. I want to obtain a Heloc loan to have more cash to BRRRR. I have 50k in savings and would like to obtain a line of credit for 100k giving me total of 150k to invest with. I will only pull what I need from the 100k line of credit. I want to purchase my first out of state investment rental property to BRRRR with this money. I currently live In the SF Bay Area in California. Anyways I just completed my application. Citibank offered me the following: 3.99% variable for 12 months, then 5.49% to 5.99% once the credit check and further details have been processed. There are no closing costs as long as the account is open 3 years. No annual fees. Once I refinance the BRRRR’ed property I will pay the heloc off right away. My question is, is this a good rate? Are there better deals out there? I have checked with US Bank and Bank of America but the differences were not significant enough for me to open an account with them. Just making sure I don’t have any regrets.

@Hashmat Bahaduri

I am assuming you are obtaining a HELOC on a primary residence? If so, those are pretty similar rates for what I am seeing here in the Bay Area.

Have you checked with any Credit Unions or local banks, sometimes you will have better luck with them than the larger commercial banks?

Bes of luck. 

@Jonathan Pflueger

Yes I meant my primary residence. I have only checked with big banks so far Bank of America, Citi Bank, US Bank, and Wells Fargo so far.

Good idea, I haven’t checked with any smaller or local banks yet. I was under the impression that the smaller banks have a higher markup (Based on some of BP forums I have come across). I will make some calls/appointments to confirm rates with the smaller banks.

I am getting a feel for the variable prime rates rates and their markups so far. I have applied with Citibank so far and just waiting for the next step. Just want to make sure I am getting the best deal.

@Hashmat Bahaduri

Real Estate is all about relationships... With that said, I like to use small local banks for as much of my real estate needs as I can. In this way, I can create direct relationships with lenders that work and live in my community. When I walk into a local bank they automatically know me and more often than not the person that takes my application and interviews me is the person, or one of the persons, that will be deciding whether not I get the loan.

I say that cause if the loan products offered from both types of banks are similar I always go with the smaller bank and "bank" (forgive the pun) on the future relationship I am building. With national banks you are just a number and more often than not, not a very big number (at least in their calculation). 


Hashmat - I'm currently in the same boat as you in California. I wasn't impressed with Wells or BofA. US Bank rate was a bit higher, but they allow you to take out three different HELOCs under one approved application and the fees are all rolled up into the rate. No multiple levels of "if x, then y" rate and fee language like I received at Wells.

My next stop is PatelCo, Travis, Provident and other credit unions.

I haven't walked into the regional banks yet, but it's on my radar.

Regarding your HELOC, BRRRR strategy - be cautious with any investments outside the peripheral of the immediate bay area right now. From the real estate friends I know, it's getting pretty frothy out there. Especially given the amount inventory that keeps going up out your way.

@David P.

I will check PatelCo as well. What do you mean by frothy? I was interested in investing in Florida specifically foreclosures or properties that need a good amount of rehab. California is too expensive for my price range. 

Hashmat, try to find smaller credit union rather than big banks. I lived in Sacramento, CA and was able to get Prime(4.5%) - 0.25% = 4.25% through Heritage CCU bank. Try also to get loan from your IRA, you can tap your own retirement money fieat and pay the interest to your own, then use HELOC. There are also some credit cards that allow you to get 0% Intro Fee and 0% Balance transfer so you can save some interest while paying down your HELOC. Good Luck with your HELOC hunting.

@Sergey Tkachev , Heritage CCU is small and have only several branches. Their banking services is limited compared to big banks, but they do have online and mobile access. I had a chance to contact the loan officer (Tiffany Duke @ HCCU). She said the following and hopefully this also answer your previous questions. What I like is the HELOC rate can be Prime or Prime minus margin, compared to big banks that has Prime plus margin.

The credit union has made some changes to the products we offer on a 2nd Mortgage. The max limit on a HELOC is now $100k. Anything above that would require a review by or loan committee. We also no longer offer fee free 2nd mortgages. Total costs is now around $680. We no longer offer an introductory rate. Rate for a HELOC is prime (currently at 4.5%) plus or minus a margin. If you would still like to try for an increase we would need to start a new application, full documentation and full appraisal would be required. If you would like to apply you can do so on our website at .

@Agus Hartono , thank you for the detailed info, really appreciate it. So it sounds like the $100k limit is assuming the HELOC is second in position to a 1st Mortgage. If I have a property free and clear, my assumption is that they may have a different limit since it will be in 1st position. I will have to give them a call to get the details, thanks again!

So I went to Chase, BofA, Merchants, Fremont and Patelco yesterday. 

BofA and Chase are neck and neck right now. My guess is that the special deals they're running are to soak up as many loans as possible before the massive rise in interest rates we've been hearing about the last 5 years occurs (sarcasm).

BofA offers full line of credit. A line with variable rate is about 4.3%. An equity loan for up to 30 years fixed (with a ten year draw) is about 4.9%. Hard to go wrong with a 30 yr fixed, even if I don't intend to use it that long.

Chase comes in first if you open a premier checking account and take out 75k the first 90 days. Those two combined with another small incentive can get my rate down to about 3.8% or lower on a 30 yr fixed I believe.

Both will loan 80% ITV and are fine with using the money to invest in real estate other than your primary.

Check these details out yourself of course, I may be missing some details here. I'll  narrow down the list and go back to.the two finalists to confirm all the details next week.

I plan on going to a few other credit unions next week before I finalize my search.

A couple more that you can check out for HELOCs:

Unify Financial Credit Union offers 4.500% (prime + 0%) on up to 80% CLTV. Payment are interest-only for the first 15 years, after which you enter a 15 year repayment period

DCU offers 4.250% (prime minus 0.25%). Lower rate but minimum monthly payments are 1% of your balance. Although they do offer a much longer 20 year draw period

I live in LA area and checked out BBVA. They do prime - 0.25% on their HELOCs (for 80% LTV). They lend up to 85% which is awesome for prime rate.

I live in LA area and checked out BBVA. They do prime - 0.25% on their HELOCs (for 80% LTV). They lend up to 85% which is awesome for prime rate. Also came across They have good rates too.

I am taking HELOC wiht Financial Partners Credit Union. They are offering 2.99% introductory rate for 1 year and Prime after 1st year. No closing fee if maintained for 3 years. They will do 75 - 80% CLTV

I just got a HELOC with Comerica

  • 10 Year Draw Period/ 20 year Payback Period
  • 2.74% Introductory Rate for 6 months. Prime +1 for the rest of the duration after that.
  • No Annual Fee
  • No prepayment penalties
  • No Appraisal Fee
  • No Closing Costs

After seeing what others have found (Prime minus margin?!?!) .. i feel like i should shop around more but I do have a foreclosure on my record. Does that effect HELOC rate? TIA!!