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Hometap vs. Unlock: Home Equity Sharing Comparison

Hometap and Unlock are two popular home equity sharing companies that let you tap into your home’s equity without taking on debt or making monthly payments. If you’re considering a home equity sharing agreement, you may be trying to decide between these two options.

Below, we’ll compare Hometap and Unlock side-by-side. We’ll look at eligibility requirements, funding amounts, repayment terms, and more so you can understand which company better suits your needs as a homeowner.

Hometap vs. Unlock at a glance

Before we dive in, here’s a quick summary of how Hometap and Unlock compare side-by-side. 

Unlock is our top choice overall, but Hometap may be a better choice if you’re looking for more flexible qualification requirements.

Free quote

Free quote

Min. credit score 500 500
Min. credit score Min. credit score
500 500
Investment amount $15,000 – $600,000 $30,000 – $500,000
Investment amount Investment amount
$15,000 – $600,000 $30,000 – $500,000
Term length 10 years 10 years
Term length Term length
10 years 10 years
State availability 16 states (listed below) 14 states (listed below)
State availability State availability
16 states (listed below) 14 states (listed below)
Check your state’s eligibility
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
West Virginia
Washington, D.C.

How does Hometap work?

Hometap is a Boston-based company that’s offered home equity sharing agreements since 2017. Unlike traditional home equity loans or HELOCs, Hometap invests in a portion of your home’s equity in exchange for a share of your home’s future value.

Here’s how it works: Hometap provides a lump sum of $15,000 to $600,000 in exchange for a percentage of your home’s future appreciation (or depreciation). You have 10 years to sell your home or buy out Hometap’s investment. No monthly payments are due during this time.

To qualify for a Hometap investment, you’ll need a minimum credit score of 500 and at least 25% equity in your home.

Check out our full Hometap review for more details on the company and its services.

How does Unlock work?

Unlock is a New York-based home equity sharing company founded in 2019. Similar to Hometap, Unlock provides a lump sum in exchange for a share of your home’s future value appreciation (or depreciation).

With Unlock, you can get between $30,000 and $500,000 in cash, depending on your home’s value and the percentage of equity you agree to share. The term length for Unlock’s agreements is 10 years, during which time you don’t need to make any monthly payments or pay interest on the funds received.

To be eligible for an Unlock home equity investment, you’ll need a minimum credit score of 500 and at least 20% equity in your home. If your credit score is below 550, you may need to verify your income as part of the application process. 

Check out our full Unlock review for more information on the company and its product.

Unlock vs. Hometap eligibility

When comparing Unlock vs. Hometap, start by reviewing their eligibility requirements and service areas. Even if a lender seems promising, it won’t matter if it doesn’t operate in your state or if you don’t meet its qualifications.

Here’s a look at where Unlock and Hometap differ:

Availability16 states14 states
Max. LTV75%80%
Investment amount$15,000 – $600,000$30,000 – $500,000
Allows partial buyouts?
Transaction fee3.5% 4.9%

The right home equity sharing company depends on your location and goals. Hometap is available in more states and may be better than Unlock if you’re looking for a small loan under $30,000 or a larger loan over $500,000.

However, Unlock allows higher LTVs, which may be better if you have a larger balance on your current mortgage. LTV, or maximum loan-to-value ratio, refers to the maximum percentage of your home’s value that can be financed, including any mortgage balance and the new investment. But Unlock also has higher potential fees than Hometap. 

What customers say about Unlock and Hometap

Aside from eligibility requirements, it’s also smart to consider what other homeowners say about Unlock vs. Hometap. A company’s marketing may be impressive, but reviews from actual customers show the level of service and care you can expect. 

Here’s a look at Hometap’s and Unlock’s customer reviews:

Rating sourceHometapUnlock
Trustpilot4.9 out of 54.7 out of 5
Better Business Bureau (BBB)3.8 out of 53.94 out of 5

Both companies have strong ratings. Customers appreciate Hometap’s accessibility, fast communication, and helpful customer service.

Unlock also performs well. Reviews highlight the team’s responsiveness and the company’s streamlined process. Unlock outperforms Hometap on BBB ratings. At the time of writing, Hometap has seven complaints; Unlock has two.

Which is better—Unlock or Hometap?

If you’re still unsure which company best suits your needs, we’ve broken down a few scenarios when one option outperforms the other. If one of the situations below sounds like yours, it might be clear which company is your best choice.

ScenarioBest choice
You want a large investment amountHometap
You want to spread your buyout over timeUnlock
You prefer a more experienced companyHometap
You have a large mortgage balanceUnlock
You want the lowest feesHometap

If you want a large investment amount

If you’re looking to access significant equity in a high-value home, Hometap could be your answer. The company offers up to $600,000 in funding, whereas Unlock’s investments go up to $500,000.

Hometap is also a winner if you need under $30,000. Its investment amounts start at $15,000 compared to Unlock’s $30,000 minimum. 


If you want to spread your buyout over time

Unlock is the only home equity sharing company that offers partial buyouts—meaning you can make smaller payments and buy back equity over time.

Hometap, as well as others in the home equity sharing space, require a buyout in full—either when you sell the house or at the end of your investment term (which, in Hometap’s case, is 10 years).


If you want a more experienced company

Hometap has been around longer than Unlock, and it has the reviews to back it up. The company has more than 3,200—mostly glowing—reviews on Trustpilot, compared to Unlock’s 810 reviews. In short, Hometap has served many customers and knows what it’s doing.


If you have a large mortgage balance

Both Hometap and Unlock have maximum loan-to-value amounts, which include your investment amount and the balance on your mortgage loan. With Hometap, your maximum LTV is 75%, meaning your current balance and your investment amount cannot exceed 75% of your home’s value.

Unlock’s LTV is slightly higher at 80%. This can be beneficial if you have a large loan balance remaining on your mortgage. It means you’ll have an extra 5% equity to work with, which could lead to a larger investment amount.


If you want the lowest fees

Both Hometap and Unlock charge transaction fees, appraisal costs, and third-party settlement costs. However, Hometap’s transaction fee is 3% of the total investment amount, while Unlock’s is higher at 4.9%. 

These fees are deducted from your total investment before it lands in your bank account, so you don’t pay them out of pocket. Still, Hometap could result in you receiving more of the amount you’re approved for. On a $250,000 investment, you could have $12,500 in fees deducted with Unlock versus $7,500 with Hometap.