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Summary

Your home equity is one of your greatest sources of long-term wealth. You don't want to treat it lightly or blow it on short-term spending.

Credit Limits

  • In general, you shouldn't use your home equity to buy anything that declines in value.

  • If you decide to tap your home's equity, try to keep your total borrowing (your mortgage plus any home equity loans or lines of credit) to 80% of your home's value. That will help you get good rates and terms, as well as preserve an important financial cushion for emergencies.

  • Make sure you can make more than minimum payments on any home equity loans or lines of credit. If you can't manage that, you can't afford whatever you're using the home equity to buy.


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