Home Equity Lending Makes a Comeback
(Smart Money) — Once every homeowner’s answer to a cash shortfall, the ability to borrow against your home equity all but disappeared a few years ago right along with, well, home equity. But now, at a growing number of banks around the country, home equity loans and lines of credit are back – and so are the pitfalls that go with them. After more than three years, some lenders are cautiously re-entering the second mortgage market. The effect hasn’t registered in the national statistics yet, but regional banks are reporting significant increases. In the Midwest, Associated Bank issued nearly three times more home equity loans in the second half of 2010 compared to the same period the year before.