More Homeowners Using Helocs as Financial Safety Net

More Homeowners Using Helocs as Financial Safety Net


Home-equity lines of credit were up 40% in the second quarter from a year earlier. Here’s what homeowners should know before taking out Helocs.


By Veronica Dagher Length (7 minutes)
Updated Nov. 16, 2022

As high interest rates drive up the cost of borrowing money, more people are tapping the equity in their homes.
Americans took out $66 billion in home-equity lines of credit, or Helocs, in the second quarter, a 40% increase from a year ago and the largest amount in almost three years, according to data from real-estate analytics firm Attom Data Solutions. These accounts, which allow homeowners to borrow against the value of their house, are making a comeback as higher rates make it less favorable to refinance a mortgage.

A Heloc works like a credit card, but since it is backed by your property generally offers a much more favorable interest rate. The average Heloc rate is 7.7%, according to Bankrate.com, compared with the average 19.04% APR on a credit card and 10.64% average personal loan rate. Owners get a credit line based on their home equity, but don’t have to use all or even any of available funds.

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