SunTrust Bank: 2021 Home Equity Review

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Based in Atlanta, SunTrust Bank was established in 1891 and is one of the largest banks in the United States. It has over 1,100 branches and 2,000 ATMs in 10 states and Washington, D.C.

But large scale aside, SunTrust has a focus on consumer education and experience. In 2016, SunTrust launched a marketing campaign called onUp, a movement designed to help customers move away from financial stress and gain confidence with their money. Complete with hashtags, a social media presence and a website, SunTrust’s onUp provides solid educational tools and resources for customers. This falls in line with its purpose of “lighting the way to financial well-being.”

SunTrust offers a variety of products for personal and business banking and a home equity line of credit (HELOC). With low interest rates and the option to convert part of your balance to a fixed rate, SunTrust’s HELOC is a good option for borrowers looking for flexible and fast funding.

SunTrust Bank snapshot

Loan types offered HELOC
APR range Starting at 4.64%
Loan amount range $10,000 to $500,000
Minimum credit score required Not specified
Repayment terms 10-year draw period and 20-year repayment period
Average time to approval Typically within 24 hours

Loan details will vary by location. Loan terms and APRs presented are based on the 32309 ZIP code.

Benefits

Here are some of SunTrust Bank’s biggest benefits when it comes to home equity products:

  • No closing costs: SunTrust bank covers all closing costs under the condition that you keep the account open for three years. (Should you close before the three-year mark, it will add the closing costs to your outstanding balance.)
  • Quick closing times: You can get an initial loan approval within 24 hours of submitting your application. Closing typically occurs within 30 to 35 days.
  • Choose a fixed or variable rate: SunTrust lets you take fixed-rate advances from your HELOC for a $15 fee, giving you more control over your payments if you want to lock in a good rate.

Drawbacks

SunTrust is not the best lender for everyone; here are some of its biggest drawbacks:

  • Not available in all states: SunTrust’s HELOC is available for owner-occupied homes, single-family homes, primary residences, second homes or condominiums located in the following places: California, Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, South Carolina, Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland, Arkansas, West Virginia, Mississippi and Washington, D.C.
  • Processing fee on certain draws: If you decide to go with a fixed-rate option for an advance, you will be charged a $15 processing fee.
  • Only one repayment option: HELOCs from SunTrust Bank have only one option for repayment. The draw period is 10 years, and the repayment period is 20 years.

Types of fees charged

SunTrust does not charge you closing costs unless your account is closed within three years. If you do close early, SunTrust will add the closing costs to your outstanding balance, a sum that could total $100 to $2,000.

Borrowers are responsible for paying title insurance, flood insurance or an increase in homeowner’s insurance if any of these are required. Homeowners using a condo to secure the loan may have to pay a $50 to $500 Condominium Questionnaire fee.

Loan products offered

SunTrust Bank’s only home equity product is its home equity line of credit. SunTrust HELOCs can range from $10,000 to $500,000 and have a 10-year draw period and a 20-year repayment period.

The SunTrust HELOC also gives you the option of choosing a fixed-rate or variable-rate repayment option for each advance you make during the 10-year draw period. You can have multiple repayment options at the same time, and you can have up to five fixed-rate balances at one time.

Each fixed-rate advance must be a minimum of $5,000, and you can choose a 60-, 120-, 180-, 240- or 360-month term for each draw. If you do choose a fixed-rate draw, you will be charged a $15 processing fee (except in Maryland and North Carolina).

Current interest rates start at 4.37 percent APR. Your actual APR will be determined by a number of factors, including location, credit line amount, loan-to-value ratio (LTV) and credit score. The maximum APR is 18 percent in all states available except for North Carolina, where the maximum is 16 percent.

How to qualify for a home equity loan with SunTrust Bank

Like most HELOCs, approval is based on credit score, credit qualifications and eligibility. While SunTrust Bank doesn’t disclose its eligibility requirements, you’ll likely have to have a credit score in the mid-600s and a low debt-to-income ratio. As with all home equity loans, you’ll also need to have sufficient equity in your home — generally at least 20 percent equity.

How to get started

To apply for a SunTrust HELOC, you can apply online, by phone or at a local branch.

Before you begin your application, make sure you have the following information readily available (in addition to personal information like your Social Security number):

  • Employer information.
  • Financial assets.
  • Financial debt (including lender names and balances).
  • Collateral information (including lender name, balance and description).
  • Co-applicant’s personal and employer information, if applicable.

Once your application is complete, a SunTrust representative will contact you to request any other documentation if necessary. Initial approval may be made in as few as 24 hours, and closing times take an average of 30 to 35 days.

For more information about SunTrust Bank and its products, you can send a message through the SunTrust website, call 800-279-4824 or visit one of its many branches.

How Bankrate rates SunTrust

Overall Score 4.2
Availability 4.3
Affordability 4.4
Customer Experience 4.0

Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by Bankrate.com staff. Opinions expressed therein are solely those of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Check the data at the top of this page and the lender’s website for the most current information.

Written by
Diane Costagliola
Contributing writer
Diane Costagliola is a contributing writer for Bankrate. Diane writes about homebuying, loans and personal finance.
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