New Equity Loan Account

Hello everyone,
I recently opened a new home equity loan account with BMO Harris Bank to consolidate some credit card debt and can't seem to make it work with online banking in Quicken.
In my first attempt, I added the new account in quicken as an online account. It found my account at BMO just fine and created the new account. Now I just need to link the payments on my credit cards as transfers from this new loan account. The first sign of trouble is that I had to manually type the account name in the credit card payment transaction. It wasn't in the drop-down list and in the loan account, "Hide in transaction entry lists" was checked and greyed out so that I couldn't un-check it. OK, fine, I can type it out. But after manually entering the transfers, the loan principle amount in quicken was doubled. No problem, I'll just delete the infamous "Opening Balance" transaction and we'll be good-to-go. Nope. There's no register. No transaction details. No way I can link this new loan account to the transfers (payments) already made from it.
Alrighty then, scratch that, deleted the new account and started over.
This time I added the new account manually and voilà, there's the register and "Opening Balance". I transfer the credit card payments, delete the opening balance and all looks good. Pop the champagne!
Except, when I try to add this account to online banking, it finds the account at BMO again just fine, but I can't link it to this new account in quicken.
What gives?
Is this an online banking/transaction download issue specific to BMO Harris?
Or do home equity accounts in Quicken just not have a register?

Was going to open a support ticket but thought I'd try you fine folks first before I make a fool of myself.

Thank you all!


  • UKR
    UKR SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    IMHO, a LOC or HELOC account should be set up as if it was an offline credit card account. That allows you to maintain the account and all its transfer from/to transactions the usual way.
    Mortgage - type accounts that are connected online for downloading do not have an account register and don't allow you to transfer your payments directly to the account. You'll have to use a category like Mortgage:Principal instead.
    Also, once a mortgage account hits $0.00 it's considered paid off and won't allow you to borrow additional money again. That's why running it like a credit card account works better. Of course, you'll have to manually record all transactions including the monthly interest charge to keep your LOC register in sync with the bank statement.
  • SammyDB
    SammyDB Member ✭✭
    Thank you for your reply.
    One issue with setting up as a credit card is I don't think I can link an asset to it?
    I watch my equity closely.
  • Frankx
    Frankx SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Hi @SammyDB

    On the issue of "link[ing] an asset to it" as you've said above - I am somewhat confused about what that might mean.  A liability is a liability and whether that liability is linked to and asset, or not, is meaningless unless one defaults on the obligation.

    I suggest that you take the rock solid advice given by @UKR above which will accomplish all of your goals (even if you happen to default...).


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  • SammyDB
    SammyDB Member ✭✭
    edited November 2021
    I plan on selling my home in about 2 years. The remaining equity in my home resulting from this Home Equity Loan is of great importance to me. It's not about defaulting. It's about liquidity.

    I have setup the loan manually as a home equity loan, linked to my home asset. The only issue is that I can't link it to online banking.

    Setting it up as credit card, as UKR suggested, would also not allow online banking. Quicken does not let me link the equity loan online to an existing manual account, credit card or otherwise. So no functionality is gained in this method AND I lose tracking of the equity in my home.

    It's not a good solution for me, sorry. But thank you very much for your responses.

    The real issue here is what UKR said, "Mortgage - type accounts that are connected online for downloading do not have an account register".

    I believe Quicken should extend the functionality of equity loan accounts by adding a register and treating them more like a credit card, allowing transfers in/out. Plus the interest calculated on my scheduled payment doesn't match the bank statement. I suspect the transfers are wreaking havoc on the amortization tables in quicken. Another issue which I believe should be investigated.
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