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Published: May 16, 2024 17 min read

Money’s Main Takeaways

  • A no-appraisal home equity loan can be an ideal solution with the potential to offer you fast access to funds without the hassle of going through a home appraisal process.
  • Although these loans are faster than traditional home equity loans, this often comes at the price of higher interest rates.
  • Understanding the available no-appraisal or hybrid home equity loan offerings is best undertaken with an apples-to-apples comparison such as those below.
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No application, origination, or appraisal fees

No application, origination, or appraisal fees

  • No closing costs, application fees, or appraisal fees
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Flexible terms, redraw up to 100%, borrow up to $400K

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Why Trust Us?

Our editors and writers evaluate no-appraisal home equity loan providers independently, ensuring our content is precise and guided by editorial integrity. Read the full methodology to learn more.

  • Reviewed 38 providers
  • 1,000+ hours of research
  • Based on 14 data points, including APRs, loan limits and approval time

Our Top Picks for Best No-Appraisal Home Equity Loans

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Best No-Appraisal Home Equity Loans Reviews

  • Uses AVM for appraisal
  • No cash required at closing
  • Combined loan-to-value ratio of up to 90%, higher than most competitors
  • Loans available from $35,000 to $300,000
  • No HELOC option available
  • Loans start at $35,000
  • May require expense reimbursement up to $500 if the loan is repaid within 36 months

Why we chose it: Discover (NMLS ID 684042) employs an automated valuation model (AVM) to determine the value of your home. The valuation process can be done in a matter of seconds, speeding up the application process.

To sweeten the pot even further, Discover has no appraisal, application, origination or processing fees, so you don’t need to pay cash at closing. Combined with competitive, fixed-rate APRs and flexible repayment terms, Discover is one of our top options for tapping into your home’s equity.

Loan amounts range from $35,000 to $300,000, with the stability of a fixed interest rate and repayment terms anywhere from 10 to 30 years. Credit score requirements depend on the amount being borrowed: a score of 620 or higher is required for loans lower than $150,000 and a minimum 700 score is required for higher amounts.

Discover's loan-to-value (LTV) ratio of up to 90% is higher than many of its competitors. However, approval and funding process is a little slower than some competitors. Eligibility determination takes one to two weeks, with a final decision coming within three weeks. You’ll have to wait up to two weeks for funding after the decision.

Read more about Discover’s home equity loan products and see rates on Discover's Secure Website >>

  • Funds in as little as 14 days
  • Requires minimum credit score of only 640
  • Loans available from $25,000 to $500,000
  • Terms of five to 30 years
  • Not available in Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Missouri, New York, North Dakota, South Dakota, West Virginia or Wyoming
  • Charges administrative fee
  • May charge additional third-party fees

Why we chose it: With lower-than-average credit score requirements, fixed-rate options and a debt-to-income ratio (DTI) as high as 50%, Spring EQ (NMLS ID 1464945) is a good option for borrowers with a less-than-perfect credit history.

You can qualify for a Spring EQ home equity loan with a score as low as 640 and a DTI of 45% or less. Those with a minimum score of 700 and a DTI of up to 50% could qualify for a loan or line of credit of up to 95% of the home’s market value. The maximum amount you can borrow from Spring EQ is $500,000.

Another advantage provided by Spring EQ is speed: you can get an instant qualification and if the loan is approved you can receive your funds in 21 days on average. In some cases, you may be able to get funding within 14 days. The lender also offers flexible loan terms ranging from five up to 30 years.

Loans are not available in all states, and Spring EQ may charge third-party fees on top of its administrative fee. Though Spring EQ has only been around since 2016, it has excellent customer reviews on leading consumer review platforms.

Read more about Spring EQ’s home equity loan products

See rates on Spring EQ's Secure Website >>

  • Lower introductory rate than most competitors
  • Up to 15 year repayment term
  • Small loans available
  • Only available to members
  • Not available to homeowners in Alaska, Hawaii, Maryland or Texas
  • Charges closing fees

Why we chose it: The best rates and flexible repayment terms make Connexus (NMLS ID 649316) a solid recommendation for those who wish to work with a credit union instead of a bank.

Connexus Credit Union is a great option for borrowers looking to take out smaller home equity loans at a very attractive introductory APR. Connexus also has branch offices should customers prefer in-person engagement.

Though its home equity loans are only available to credit union members, the membership process is straightforward and relatively quick. Connexus is positively reviewed by most customers, who cite excellent customer service and flexibility in payment arrangements for borrowers who fall on hard times.

Loans starting at $5,000 are available up to 90% of a home’s total equity, though final loan amounts will be decided by the borrower’s credit score, debt-to-income ratio and the loan-to-value ratio of the borrower’s home.

Read more about Connexus’ home equity loan products

See rates on Connexus' Secure Website >>

  • Loans available for the total amount of a home's worth up to $500,000
  • No closing costs, application, origination or upfront fees
  • Fixed-interest loans with flexible repayment terms
  • Available only to active duty or retired military and their immediate families
  • Requires a Navy Federal Credit Union membership
  • Mixed customer reviews

Why we chose it: With no application or origination fees, equity loans up to the total value of a borrower's home and flexible terms, NFCU (NMLS ID 399807) is a great option for veterans and active-duty military members and their families, Department of Defense personnel and household members of affiliated families who are looking for a no-appraisal home equity loan with a fixed interest rate.

Repayment terms are adequate, starting at five years and going up to a maximum repayment term of 20 years. This may mean higher monthly payments than with some competitor offerings.

The credit union will pay for closing costs on new fixed-rate home equity loan applications dated on or after June 1, 2023, representing a savings ranging from $300 to $2,000 over the life of the loan. Applicants are subject to all of the usual checks and limitations, including those mandated by credit score, the loan amount and the loan-to-value ratio of the property in question.

See rates on Navy Federal's Secure Website >>

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Other no-appraisal home equity loans we considered

We evaluated home equity loan products and lenders based on available interest rates, repayment terms, application process and time required, and consumer reviews, among other criteria.

Though the following lenders offer competitive terms, they failed to meet all the requirements for inclusion in our "best of" rankings.


  • "Soft" credit inquiry has no effect on your credit score
  • Works with carefully vetted lender partners
  • Convenient way for borrowers to compare various home equity loan products
  • Not a direct lender
  • Rate offers are tentative pending partner lender review

For more than 20 years, LendingTree has helped homeowners find attractive loans by allowing them to compare offers across a wide array of home equity loan lenders. The procedure is straightforward and quick, and, best of all, it won't affect your credit score. Pre-qualified offers from carefully selected lenders are available within minutes, though final APR, repayment terms and monthly payments may differ.

Why LendingTree didn’t make the top four: Though LendingTree advertises relaxed credit score requirements and debt-to-income ratio limits, initially offered products may not match the final terms offered by their partner lenders, leading to too much ambiguity for a solid recommendation.

See rates on LendingTree's Secure Website >>

U.S. Bank

  • Covers all closing costs
  • Offers discounts to banking customers or those who enroll in autopay
  • Loan amounts from $15,000 to $750,000
  • May charge additional fees, such as a 1% or $500 maximum for repayment within the 30 months

U.S. Bank offers competitive rates, especially to customers or those who opt to become customers, as they become eligible for discounts that can make a home equity loan a bit more affordable. The dollar value of offered loans compares well on both the low and high end, though available information about specifics is a little sparse pre-application.

Why U.S. Bank didn’t make the top four: Ambiguity around key factors such as the possibility of additional fees and no firm timeline for the application process makes U.S. Bank’s offering a little too vague compared to competitor’s offerings.

See rates on U.S. Bank's Secure Website >>


  • Offers home equity loans up to 80% of a home's total value
  • Offers an interest rate discount for borrowers who also have a KeyBank checking and savings account
  • Only available in Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Indiana, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Vermont and Washington
  • Does not disclose APR before application approval

KeyBank offers home equity loan products that allow qualified applicants to borrow up to 80% of their home’s total value. It offers both home equity loans and HELOCs. Home equity loans can range from $25,000 to $500,000 with an available 0.25% discount on interest rates to banking customers.

Why KeyBank didn’t make the top four: Though KeyBank offers competitive offerings and flexible terms, home equity loans are only available to homeowners in 15 states.

See rates on KeyBank's Secure Website >>

No-Appraisal Home Equity Loan Guide

If you are a homeowner looking into home equity loans for the first time, you may have questions about how much equity you have in your home or even how equity in a home is built up. Keep reading for a look at the available loan options and answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about no-appraisal home equity loans.

What is a no-appraisal home equity loan?

No-appraisal home equity loans can be used by borrowers to access the money they have built up in their homes without the need for an appraisal. Unlike traditional home equity products, these do not require a third-party professional real estate appraiser to assess the home’s value. Homeowners use these loans to consolidate debt, carry out home renovations and cover unforeseen medical expenses, among other things.

Instead, the loan is typically approved based on the applicant’s credit history and overall personal finance health. The benefit of this type of loan is the speed with which it can be processed, as lengthy appraisals can slow down approval timelines. There are also no hefty appraisal fees to pay. However, the speed of this loan comes at a cost, as the interest rate is typically higher than with traditional loans, although some lenders may offer interest rate discounts if you are a regular customer.

The funds from the loan are paid out in a lump sum and repaid over a term that can range from five to 30 years, depending on the lender. If you use a home equity loan to make home improvements, some of the interest paid on the loan could be tax deductible.

Home equity loans, also known as second mortgages, take a second lien position on your home on top of your first mortgage and will increase your combined loan-to-value (CLTV). Because you will have to carry two mortgages, there's an increased risk of foreclosure on your home if you run into financial difficulties and fall behind on your payments on either loan.

Tips on how to get a home equity loan without an appraisal

Getting approved for a no-appraisal home equity loan depends on the lender and their lending requirements. Generally, the lower the mortgage balance (and the higher the amount of equity), the more likely you can get through the process without an appraisal. Here are some tips to help you get a home equity loan without an appraisal.

1. Look for lenders that consider automated valuation models (AVMs) or desktop appraisals

Research home equity lenders who may consider automated valuation models (AVMs) or desktop appraisals rather than a full appraisal, as this reduces the cost of borrowing and the time to close the loan. AVMs calculate an estimated value of a property based on public data such as property tax and deed records. Desktop appraisals incorporate the AVM with additional data supplied by an appraiser to generate a detailed report of the property’s value.

2. Ensure that you meet the lender's qualification requirements for loan approval

To have a better chance of getting your loan approved, check the lender’s qualification requirements before applying. These criteria commonly include things such as:

  • Your credit score and payment history
  • Your debt-to-income ratio
  • The loan-to-value ratio of the property
  • The amount of the loan
  • The total value of the property

If you don't meet the lender’s criteria, it's unlikely that your application will be approved. Still, you may identify some things you can correct, such as a low credit score that can be improved by lowering your credit card utilization or improving your debt-to-income ratio.

3. Provide full documentation of income, credit history and property details

Without a full accounting of your income, credit history and property details, it's unlikely your loan will be approved. Lenders need comprehensive and accurate documentation to verify your creditworthiness and your home's current market value. It's essential to provide all the required information as accurately as possible to ensure your application has the best chance of approval.

4. Apply with credit unions or online lenders instead of traditional banks

You may want to consider applying with credit unions or online lenders instead of traditional banks. Credit unions can be a desirable choice because they tend to have more flexible requirements, lower fees, lower interest rates and may offer more attractive loan terms. Online lenders usually have faster prep and approval times, may waive application fees and, in some cases, don't require appraisals.

Alternatives to no-appraisal home equity loans

No-appraisal home equity loans offer a convenient way to access the capital in your home without undertaking an appraisal, but not everyone will end up qualifying or find the terms of available loans attractive. Fortunately, there are some good alternatives.

Home equity lines of credit (HELOCs)

One potential alternative is a home equity line of credit (HELOC). A home equity line of credit is a revolving line of credit that uses the equity in your home as collateral. With a HELOC, you can borrow money up to the predetermined line of the credit limit as needed, making it a sound way to access funds for home improvement projects, vacations or other large purchases. The period of time you can access funds is called the draw period and it is typically 10 years. During the repayment period you can no longer access funds, and it usually lasts 20 years. HELOC rates are typically lower than home equity loan rates.

Cash-out refinances

Another alternative is a cash-out refinance. A cash-out refinance involves replacing the existing mortgage and mortgage lender for a loan with a higher amount and then pocketing the difference between the two loans. This option could be the best if mortgage rates are lower than your current mortgage when you initially bought your new home, allowing you to benefit from lower interest payments while taking advantage of the increased equity in your home.

Personal loans

Personal loans are another option. While personal loans and debt consolidation loans typically have higher interest rates than home equity loans, they may be the best option if you need funds quickly and don’t want to wait for the process of cash-out refinancing. Additionally, personal loans don’t require collateral, simplifying the process even further. Note that most personal loans will require a minimum credit score of 580 or higher. Personal loans can also be used to consolidate high-interest debt.

No-Appraisal Home Equity Loan FAQs

Does a home equity loan require an appraisal?

Lenders have different methods for assessing and approving a home equity loan. They need to calculate the amount of funds that can be safely extended and the borrower's ability to repay that amount. Lenders traditionally require an appraisal to determine an accurate and up-to-date value for the home.

However, some lenders may use different evaluation methods, such as recent home sales in the local area or assessed property value of the subject property. In some instances, the lender may opt for a drive-by appraisal for a home equity loan or not require an appraisal at all.

How long does it take to get a home equity loan after appraisal?

The timeline for getting a home equity loan after an appraisal can vary depending on the lender and other factors, such as the borrower's credit score and the property's condition. After receiving an application and the property appraisal, the lender then decides whether the borrower is eligible for a home equity loan based on the loan-to-value (LTV) ratio.

Once the lender approves the application, the borrower will usually be asked to complete and sign the loan documents, after which the lender will disburse the loan and the borrower will receive the funds as a lump sum. Though this timeline is approximate, you can expect the process to take between 15 and 45 days.

Who pays for the appraisal on a home equity loan?

Typically, the borrower in a home equity loan must cover the cost of any necessary appraisal. The cost of an appraisal varies depending on the size and location of the property and can range anywhere from $200 to $700 or more. Some lenders may cover the cost of the appraisal, but it's best to confirm this with your lender for the specific terms of the loan.

How do banks appraise houses for home equity loans?

When an appraiser does a home evaluation for a home equity loan, they'll look at the condition of the property, recent home renovations or repairs, the size of the lot, the size and condition of the structure and any other features that could affect value.

The appraiser will also compare the home's value to comparable properties in the area to ensure the loan amount is fair and accurate. The lender will use the appraisal results to set the loan-to-value ratio and set the lending parameters accordingly.

How We Chose the Best No-Appraisal Home Equity Loans

Our methodology for determining the best no-appraisal home equity loans involved carefully comparing the features and benefits of currently available offerings, including:

  • Appraisal requirements
  • Interest rates
  • Application process and processing times
  • Availability of fixed or variable interest rates
  • Available terms
  • Customer and private organization reviews on a variety of platforms
  • Customer satisfaction ratings

We also spoke with customer service representatives when possible. It’s important to note that though this information is current at the time of publication, financial institutions may change or update their policies and offerings. Interest rates, terms and the availability of no-appraisal home equity loans may change, and we recommend you verify all information presented here prior to applying for loans with any of these lenders.

Summary of Money’s Best No-Appraisal Home Equity Loans