A HELOC is a Home Equity Line of Credit
A HELOC is a home equity line of credit. It's sometimes referred to as a second mortgage, revolving line of credit, or home equity loan. A HELOC allows you to draw funds from home equity through the issuing bank.
You may be wondering—what exactly is "home equity"? It's simply how much property you own compared to how much you owe on your mortgage and any other debts against it. In other words, if you have $200,000 worth of real estate and only owe $150,000 on the property (with no other loans), your "home equity" would be $50K.
Many people who have good credit can qualify for this type of financing option; however, its availability depends on several factors, including income level and homeownership status, among others.
A HELOC has lenient requirements
No scrutinizing your association budget, no need to verify fidelity bond coverage when reviewing condo insurance, and no concern about how many owner-occupied and investor units there are in the building.
There is also a 75% max financing on a 1st mortgage and 90% combined financing on the first + second mortgage for primary residences. The lender only needs to review the condo questionnaire instead of doing a full inspection or appraisal process.
You can use a HELOC for many things
HELOCs are flexible loans, and you can use them for various purposes. Do you need cash to buy a new car? Maybe a vacation? How about some home improvements?
Maybe you want to consolidate your debt or take out a loan for an upcoming wedding. A HELOC is your ticket to getting any cash that you need.
You can use a HELOC like a credit card
You can also use your HELOC like a credit card. This is great for people trying to build up their credit score and not mind paying interest on their purchases. You may be charged less interest if you pay your balance in full each month, but you will still be using the balance at least partially as a revolving line of credit, increasing your creditworthiness over time.
If you want to track how much money you have available on the line of credit, check with the bank or lender. They will tell you how much is available and has been used so far—and there are no hidden fees or tricks here!
You only pay money on the interest you borrow
This means you only pay money on the interest you borrow. In other words, if you have a $100,000 HELOC loan with a variable interest rate of 10% and only use $20,000 to buy furniture for your home—you will only pay interest on that portion.
You don't have to worry about paying back more than what was borrowed (unless there are fees or penalties).
The interest rates vary depending on the amount borrowed and other factors, such as credit score, which we'll discuss later in this guide. They're also fixed, so there's no surprise when your payment goes up unexpectedly at the end of the year, like with mortgages or car loans!
You get lower interest rates
HELOC rates are lower than a home equity loan, credit card, or mortgage. The interest rate on your HELOC is typically fixed and will remain the same throughout the life of the loan. This can be important if you want to secure an acceptable rate before interest rates rise again.
HELOC interest rates are tax-deductible
Why are they tax deductible? Because they're considered to be "home equity loans," which are categorized as being for primary residences. Since the IRS allows homeowners to deduct mortgage interest payments from their taxable income, it only makes sense that HELOC interest would also be included.
How is this deduction applied? The actual calculation is pretty complicated, but one example would be someone who pays $1,000 in mortgage principal and $500 in HELOC principal per month on a $300,000 house with an average 20 percent down payment (or 10 percent equity).
In this case, the homeowner's taxable income would drop by approximately $5,400 annually. After accounting for deductions such as property taxes and homeowner's insurance premiums, they could likely recover more than half of their monthly payments through other tax credits and savings programs (such as HARP).
A HELOC allows you to draw as much as you please
A HELOC gives you great freedom when drawing money from your line of credit. You can draw all at once or in increments, whenever you want and however much you decide you need at that moment. You can also draw more than once in a given year, known as an "annual loan."
In other words, when it comes to your HELOC and how much money you take out each month (or year), there are no rules about how much—or even if—you should borrow.
The draw period for a HELOC is favorable
The draw period is the amount of time you have to pay back the amount borrowed. The draw period for a HELOC is typically ten years, but it can be longer or shorter, depending on your needs.
If you need money for a home improvement project and want to pay off the loan with savings from other sources, this will help you avoid paying interest during those months when you don't use all of your funds.
Sometimes a HELOC is better than a home equity loan
A HELOC will allow you to borrow more money than a typical home equity loan. This can be beneficial, for instance, if you're trying to refinance your mortgage or finance another considerable expense like installing solar panels on your roof or buying an RV for retirement travel.
A healthier budget could also benefit from the low introductory rate with most HELOCs compared with the higher interest rates charged by traditional home equity loans.
Finally, since it's easier to get approved for a HELOC than for other types of loans (such as those offered by banks), they can be helpful if you're experiencing credit challenges and need help securing financing at all costs.
A HELOC is excellent for divorces
HELOCs can be beneficial when divorcing because they allow you to keep your primary mortgage intact. When it comes time to sell your house, a HELOC will help you pay off the second mortgage without having to refinance and possibly lose out on a great interest rate on the first mortgage.
As an added benefit, HELOC interest rates are typically fixed for the duration of the loan term (from 3 months up to 10 years). This means that even if you apply right before closing and lock in an interest rate, it won't go up while you're paying off your loan.
A HELOC is outstanding for home improvements
You can use a HELOC to finance home renovations and get up to 110% of the current value of your home. Your bank will base its decision on all relevant information, so you don't need to worry about whether you'll be approved for a loan or not.
If it's just a few years since you bought the house, then chances are good that they'll give you the loan—assuming that all other factors are okay (i.e., no bad credit history and so on).
The great thing about using your HELOC this way is that there are no closing costs involved in getting the money from your lender, which means more money for purchasing materials and hiring contractors!
Your lender will also give you flexibility when paying back these funds. You could choose to pay off one round at a time; however long it takes for each phase (or portion) of work being done; or even borrow more money than what was initially granted during origination if necessary.
If you are thinking about borrowing, you have options!
So, you're thinking about borrowing against the equity in your home. Maybe you need some cash to finance a new project or purchase—or maybe you're looking for a way to pay off debt. Whatever the case, a HELOC loan can work out well for you.
The best part about using a HELOC loan is that it can give you access to money in just about any situation - whether it's an emergency fund or extra cash on hand, having this loan available can help prevent stressful situations from occurring later on down the line.
The downside is that some unexpected costs could be associated with getting one of these loans; however, these costs should disappear after several months when they're paid off (with interest).
A home equity line of credit is great for homes in Charlotte County, Florida
If you're in Charlotte County, Florida, and have a home worth more than what you owe, a HELOC might be the perfect choice for you. By taking out a HELOC loan, which stands for "home equity line of credit," you can access the equity in your house to use for anything from repairs to a vacation.
It's "free money" because no monthly payments are necessary—you only pay off the amount drawn out of your account at closing (plus interest).
The advantage of this type of loan is that as long as there is enough equity in your home to cover the amount requested by the lender, there will never be any late payments or penalty fees associated with not being able to make payments on time (known as "early payoff penalties").
This means that if something comes up like unexpected medical bills or car repairs come up unexpectedly and require additional funds before payday arrives next month, none were budgeted for those costs.
Using some extra cash from an existing line would allow these unexpected expenses without breaking budget constraints or having them impact other monthly bills such as mortgage payments.
Who qualifies for a HELOC
The answer is anyone who wants to. But there are some requirements you need to meet first:
It would help if you had a good credit score (typically, a FICO score of 620 or higher). If you don't know your credit score, it's easy to find out by using one of the many free services that will tell you; just Google "free credit report" or go straight to AnnualCreditReport.com.
You must have a steady income and job security—a regular paycheck from a well-established employer is ideal.
- You must own the home where you're planning on taking out the loan; sometimes, banks will offer HELOCs for investment properties, but this depends on where you live and which bank approves your loan application.
There are several HELOC banks in Charlotte County, Florida
If you're considering a HELOC, there are several things to consider. First, you must know what kind of rates you can expect. In Charlotte County, Florida, the average rate for HELOCs is around 3%. This sounds great until you realize that rates vary from lender to lender and even within one bank.
Another thing to consider is the term of your loan. The longer your term, the lower your monthly payments will be because it spreads out your total cost over more months (and years). However, many experts recommend not going beyond 20 years when choosing a home equity line of credit because doing so would likely result in an unmanageable monthly payment.
Finally—and this goes without saying—you want your HELOC lender to be trustworthy! If they have good reviews online and testimonials from their customers, then chances are they won't cause any problems down the road about rates or terms changing unexpectedly or anything like that.
Top 5 Places To Get Ice Cream within Charlotte County, Florida
Here are some of the best places to enjoy a sweet ice cream:
Sparky's Ice Cream
Sparky's Ice Cream offers various flavors and toppings, including their famous peanut butter cup and banana split. They offer milkshakes, floats, sundaes, banana splits, and more.
As one of the best places to get ice cream in Charlotte County, FL, Sparky's is a must-visit destination for anyone looking for great food and a fantastic atmosphere.
The Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream Co
The Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream Co is an old-fashioned ice cream parlor that offers hand-dipped ice cream and homemade fudge, caramel apples, and other treats.
Their unique flavors include Banana Nutella Pecan Crunch, Key Lime Pie, and Cookie Monster Crunch! This is the place to go if you're looking for something different than your everyday vanilla or chocolate cone!
Cone Heads Homemade Ice Cream & Frozen Yogurt
Cone Heads Homemade Ice Cream & Frozen Yogurt is a family-owned business serving homemade ice cream for many years. They offer over 100 flavors of ice cream and the best soft serve around!
Their delicious treats are made fresh daily with no preservatives or artificial ingredients. You can enjoy their homemade ice cream right off the truck or order it by the scoop or half a gallon.
Blue Bell Creameries
Blue Bell Creameries is a local ice cream company that makes an excellent variety of flavors and are very reasonably priced. There are two locations in Charlotte County, the first is at the corner of Daniels Road and Pine Island Road in Punta Gorda, and the second is on Tamiami Trail in Port Charlotte.
If you're interested in trying out some new flavors or craving something sweet, we recommend stopping by one of these locations!
Kelly's Homemade Ice Cream
Kelly's Homemade Ice Cream has been making delicious ice cream for over 30 years and has two strategically placed locations throughout Charlotte County. The first location is Venice Avenue in Englewood, and the second is on Summerlin Road in North Port, next to Publix Supermarket.
Kelly's Homemade Ice Cream offers a wide range of flavors, including Mint Chocolate Chip, Cookies & Cream, Peanut Butter Fudge, and many more! The prices are reasonable, and plenty of toppings are available if you want to add extra flavor to your vanilla cone!
If you want to know more about HELOC loans in Charlotte County, Florida, or want to get pre-approved for a loan, give our HELOC advisors a call today. We'll help you find the best possible rate and terms that fit your unique needs.