Bank of America’s Balance Assist program can provide small, short-term loans to bank customers for a flat fee. The program, created in part to help customers avoid high-interest payday loans, is expected to be available nationwide in early 2022.
- Access the money almost instantly if you are approved.
- Pay a single $5 fee for your loan, with no other fees.
- Build a credit history with on-time payments.
- You can only borrow up to $500, in $100 increments.
- You must be able to repay the money and the $5 fee in three equal installments.
- You must have had a qualified Bank of America checking account for at least one year.
Balance Assist was designed to help Bank of America customers manage their short-term cash flow needs at a lower cost. Customers who meet the bank’s criteria can apply to borrow up to $500 and only pay $5 in fees.
The program could be used to cover an unexpected debt or expense. This type of short-term loan can be an alternative to a payday loan.
Balance Assist allows eligible Bank of America customers to borrow in $100 increments, up to $500. You will complete an online loan application, and if approved, you should receive your funds within minutes.
Every time you borrow money, you pay a flat fee of $5. You then repay your loan and fees in three equal installments over three months.
Bank of America offers this repayment example: If you took out a $100 loan, you would owe a total of $105 and pay $35 at 30, 60, and 90 days.
You will pay a $5 fee each time you borrow through Balance Assist and no other interest or finance charges. Bank of America says these fees translate to an annual percentage rate of between 5.99% and 29.76%, depending on how much you borrow.
Bank of America does not charge overdraft or insufficient funds fees for returned Balance Assist payments, and borrowers will not be charged late fees.
Note: Overdraft protection will be disabled for the account receiving funds from Balance Assist, and this setting cannot be changed as long as you have an active loan. However, your account may still be overdrawn and you may incur a $35 returned item fee for each declined or unpaid transaction.
Bank of America does a credit check, but also takes into account your banking relationship if you have a thin credit history. You will also need to meet the program criteria:
- You must be a resident of the United States or US territories.
- You must have a qualified Bank of America checking account with regular monthly deposits for at least one year. A SafeBalance account is not eligible.
- You must maintain a positive balance in your Bank of America bank account.
- You cannot have a Balance Assist loan open or a loan in the last 30 days.
Bank of America does not mention a minimum credit score to qualify for Balance Assist, but a credit check is part of the eligibility assessment. If your credit history is limited, your relationship with Bank of America will be considered in the approval decision.
Balance Assist is available in select states and is expected to roll out nationwide by early 2022.
Bank of America, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, is one of the largest banks in the United States and receives an A-plus rating from the Better Business Bureau. Trustpilot scores 1.3 out of 5 stars for Bank of America.
Customers with questions or concerns about Balance Assist can call the bank at 800-432-1000.
Balance Assist is an online program. Once you are logged into your Bank of America account, you begin the application process from the website. If your application is approved, loan funds can be advanced to your account within minutes.