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Home Equity Home Equity Investments

Hometap vs. Unlock: Home Equity Sharing Comparison

Updated Jan 09, 2024   |   5-min read

Home equity can be a valuable tool. And with the advent of home equity sharing agreements, you can now leverage that equity without taking on more debt or paying interest costs.

Are you considering a home equity sharing agreement? Use this comparison to find out whether Hometap or Unlock may be best for your goals as a homeowner.

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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
Min. credit score 500 550
Min. credit score Min. credit score
500 550
State availability AZ, CA, FL, MI, MN, NJ, NV, NY, NC, OH, OR, PA, SC, UT, VA, WA AZ, CA, CO, FL, MI, NC, NJ, NV, OR, SC, TN, UT, VA, WA
State availability State availability

In this comparison:

About Hometap

Hometap is a company that offers home equity sharing agreements in 16 states. The company is based in Boston and has been around since 2019. Check out our full review of Hometap for more details on the company and its services.

About Unlock

Unlock is a newer home equity sharing company that services homeowners in 14 states. The company launched in 2021 and is based in San Francisco. Like Hometap, it focuses solely on home equity investments. Read our full Unlock review for more details.

Does Hometap or Unlock have better reviews and ratings?

Reviews and ratings can give you great insight into the experience and care you can expect from a company. Here’s a look at how Hometap vs. Unlock reviews measure up:

Rating SourceHometapUnlock
Better Business Bureau3.67/54.92/5

Both Hometap and Unlock have strong ratings. On Trustpilot, Hometap has a jaw-dropping 4.9 stars across more than 1,300 reviews. About 98% of past customers say their experience was either “excellent” or “great.” Customers are specifically happy with Hometap’s accessibility, fast communication, and helpful customer service.

Unlock is highly rated, too. The company currently has a 4.6 on Trustpilot, with 93% of customers calling their experience either “excellent” or “great.” Many reviews note the team’s responsiveness and the company’s streamlined process. Unlock also beats Hometap on Better Business Bureau ratings. (Hometap has two complaints; Unlock has zero.)

Is a home equity investment from Hometap or Unlock more accessible?

Reviews and ratings are a good place to start when comparing companies. To ensure you’re getting the best fit for your needs, you also need to look at eligibility requirements and geographic service areas. Here’s a look at how those compare for Unlock vs. Hometap.

State availabilityAZ, CA, FL, MI, MN, NJ, NY, NV, NC, SC, OH, OR, PA, VA, UT, and WAAZ, CA, CO, FL, MI, NC, NJ, NV, OR, SC, TN, UT, VA, and WA
Minimum credit score500550
Maximum LTV75%80%
Type of homeMost residential property types, including single-family properties, multi-family properties, and condos

Primary residences, vacation homes, and rental properties allowed
Most residential property types, including single-family homes, condos,  2-4 unit properties, and townhomes

Both owner- and non-owner -occupied allowed
Investment amount$15,000 – $600,000Up $30,000 – $500,000
Term10 years10 years, with partial buyouts allowed over time
Fees3% transaction fee, appraisal costs, and third-party settlement costs3% transaction fee, appraisal costs, and third-party settlement costs

The right home equity sharing company will depend on your location and unique goals as a homeowner. Geographically speaking, Hometap is more widely available. It also offers higher loan amounts. Unlock, on the other hand, allows for higher loan-to-value ratios, which could be good if you still have an existing mortgage balance.

Scenarios in which Hometap or Unlock is better than the other

If you’re still not sure which company fits your needs best, we’ve broken down a few scenarios when one option clearly outperforms the other. See if one of the below situations sounds like yours and, if so, which company is your best choice.

If you want a large investment amount: Hometap

If you’re looking to tap a lot of 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 only up to $500,000.

If you want to spread your buyout over time: Unlock

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

Hometap, as well as others in the home equity sharing space, require 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

Hometap has been around a few years longer than Unlock, and it has the reviews to back it up. The company has more than 1,300 (mostly) glowing reviews on Trustpilot, compared to Unlock’s near-200 reviews. In short: Hometap has served a lot of customers and knows what it’s doing.

If you have a large existing mortgage balance: Unlock

Both Hometap and Unlock have maximum loan-to-value amounts, which include both your investment amount and the balance on your existing mortgage loan. With Hometap, your maximum LTV is 75%, meaning your existing balance and your investment amount can come to no more than 75% of your home’s value.

Unlock’s LTV, on the other hand, is slightly higher at 80%. This can be beneficial if you have a large loan balance remaining on your existing mortgage. It means you’ll have an extra 5% equity to work with, and it could mean a bigger investment amount.

Which company is our choice between Hometap and Unlock?

We gave both Hometap and Unlock a 4.5 out of 5 stars and consider both solid options if you’re looking for a home equity sharing agreement. The right choice will depend on where you’re located, how much of an investment you’d like, your existing loan balance, and other details.

If neither Hometap nor Unlock feels like the right fit, there are also other home equity sharing companies to consider.