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Understanding and Utilizing Home Equity

October 1, 2023 | Posted by: Lesley Krawiec

If you've consistently made mortgage payments over the years, you've been accumulating home equity. As this equity grows, homeowners can access it, converting it into cash for various purposes, from home renovations to funding significant life events. This guide will help you grasp the concept of home equity and how you can leverage it.

Popular Uses of Home Equity

1. Home Renovations

Homeownership often comes with a never-ending list of potential upgrades. Using your home equity can be a strategic way to finance these enhancements. By choosing projects wisely, you can boost your home's value and achieve a favorable return on investment (ROI). Before diving in, establish a clear budget and research which renovations yield the best ROI.

2. Educational Expenses

While saving for education is ideal, it's not always feasible. Drawing from your home equity can be a practical way to support educational pursuits without straining your finances.

3. Consolidating Debts

Consolidating debts means merging various debts into one, ideally with a more favorable interest rate. By tapping into your home equity, you can address high-interest debts, such as credit card balances. However, it's crucial to understand the terms and total interest costs to ensure it's a beneficial move.

4. Emergency Funds

In unexpected financial crises, your home equity can be a lifeline, helping you navigate challenging times.

5. Wedding Expenses

Weddings can be costly. If you're gearing up for the big day but are short on funds, your home equity might offer a solution, helping you manage expenses without incurring high-interest debts.

Understanding Home Equity Loan

This type of loan is akin to other secured loans but uses your home as collateral. Lenders will let you borrow based on your home's value. To be eligible, you should have substantial equity in your home, have paid a significant part of your mortgage, and demonstrate financial stability.

Home Equity Line Of Credit (HELOC)

A HELOC is a flexible credit line allowing homeowners to borrow against their home equity at competitive interest rates. While interest is charged on the borrowed amount, a HELOC offers the flexibility to borrow and repay repeatedly, up to a set limit. To qualify, you should have at least 20% equity in your home.

Equity-Based Mortgages

In simple terms, equity represents the portion of your home you truly own. As you make mortgage payments, your equity grows. This accumulated value can be leveraged in an equity-based mortgage, which focuses more on the property's value and marketability than traditional income or credit evaluations.


  • A minimum down payment of 25% (though sometimes more is needed).
  • The property's quality, location, and market appeal play a role in approval.
  • Applications are assessed individually.


  • Potential borrowing of up to 75% of the home's value.
  • Interest rates may vary based on your credit profile.

If you're contemplating leveraging your home's equity, it's essential to monitor your credit score, establish a feasible budget, and be fully aware of the associated costs. Curious about your options? Reach out to us today!

Ready to take the next step and get into your next home? Contact The Get'r Done Girls, Mortgage Professionals in Red Deer, Alberta.

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