• How much do you need to borrow?

    • Get An Estimate

      If you're using your home equity to pay for renovations, your contractor should provide an estimate for the work being done. If the money is to pay for a wedding, you can work with a wedding planner to develop a budget for the entire event. Getting an estimate should give you a very realistic idea of how much you need.

    • Set A Budget

      You can also work with your lender to figure out a monthly payment that you are comfortable with. Working backwards, this will give you a total loan amount. That will help you set a budget for what you can spend.

    • Consider a HELOC

      If your expenses are less easy to define (for example, if you'll be using it to pay for a child's college costs over several years, or if you're paying for a number of smaller projects), consider a home equity line of credit (HELOC) instead. A HELOC works more like a credit card, with a set line of credit that you can use as needed over time. Our article Choosing to Tap Your Home's Equity can help you decide which is best for you.

    • Whatever path you take, make sure you are comfortable with the monthly payment you'll be making (or, in the case of the HELOC, the maximum potential interest rate). With a little planning, you can make the most of your home's equity.