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Our Top 5 Favorite Ways to Use Your HELOC

HELOC | 3 min read | Updated: Dec 2023

A home equity line of credit, or HELOC, is a revolving line of credit that lets you tap into the equity you’ve built in your home. With access to funds you can draw on again and again – up to your available credit line – you’ll be able to use your HELOC for all kinds of purchases. Here are our top 5 favorite ways you can use your Civista HELOC.

Key Takeaways:

  • Use your HELOC to fund renovations, repairs, or remodels, adding value to your home and utilizing your equity effectively.
  • Consolidate high-interest debts into a lower interest option, reducing monthly payments and saving on interest over time.
  • Utilize your HELOC as a backup fund for unexpected expenses, avoiding the need for high-interest credit cards or tapping into savings.
  • Cover tuition or other education costs for yourself or your family members with your HELOC, offering a flexible alternative to student loans.
  • Finance appliance upgrades or home improvements like lighting fixtures with your HELOC, ensuring your home remains functional and comfortable without resorting to high-interest credit cards.

1. Home Improvement

A home renovation or improvement project is the most common use for HELOCs. Tackle projects that make your space your own or prepare your home for a future sale. Adding value to your home through renovations, remodels, repairs or other projects is a smart use of your HELOC and a perfect way to make your equity work for you. Check out Civista’s Planning for a Home Improvement Project blog post for ideas on how you can get ready for your next project.

2. Debt Consolidation

A HELOC offers lower interest rates than many credit cards and personal loans. If you’re trying to eliminate high interest debt, using your HELOC to consolidate your payments into a lower interest option may be right for you. To learn more about credit cards and debt management check out the Civista Learning Vault. Make sure to carefully review your options. And remember by utilizing your HELOC you will be using your home as collateral for any debt you consolidate.

3. Emergency Fund

Your HELOC can act as a rainy-day fund to keep you from resorting to high interest credits cards, depleting your savings or tapping into investments to cover unexpected expenses. From medical bills to vehicle repairs, your HELOC is there when you need it. To learn more about emergency savings funds check out Civista’s Prepare for the Unexpected blog post.

4. Education Expenses

Have a child in private school or a high school graduate heading off to college? Or are you considering taking courses yourself? Your HELOC can provide you with the funds you need and may be a reasonable alternative to student loans. Use your HELOC to cover your tuition and then pay down your balance in time for next semester’s bill. Or simply use your HELOC to help with smaller school expenses like books and other supplies. 

5. Appliance Updates

Although less involved than an entire remodeling project, updating your appliances, lighting fixtures or home electronics can be just as important to making your home functional and comfortable. Your HELOC is available next time you need to replace an outdated furnace, update your kitchen lighting or install a new home security system instead of using a high interest credit card.

No matter how you choose to use your HELOC, just need to keep in mind that your loan is secured by your home. Always be responsible when paying back your loan and making payments. For more information about HELOCs visit or contact your local Civista Banker.

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*Important information. 

Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) lowest rate is Prime (8.50% Annual Percentage Rate (APR) as of 7/27/23). The lowest rate includes no closing costs for equity lines under $500,000.00 that remain open for at least 36 months. If you close your line of credit within 36 months of account opening, the bank origination fee waived at account opening ($350.00 as of 7/27/23) may be assessed. Annual fee is $75.00 and is waived the first year. The APR may vary based on The Wall Street Journal “Prime Rate” (Prime) as published on the first day of the month. Minimum APR is 3.75% and maximum APR is 25.00% OH and 18% IN. Rate and terms may change at any time and may vary by property type, loan amount, credit history, and loan-to-value ratio. Property insurance required and flood insurance may be required. Consult your tax advisor regarding the tax deductibility of interest. Important Consideration when managing Interest-Only Payments: the interest rate on a home equity line of credit is variable; therefore, your monthly interest-only payment may change with market rates. Your principal balance is only reduced when you make voluntary principal payments during the 15-year draw period of your home equity line of credit. At maturity, any remaining account balance outstanding will be due in a single balloon payment. At that time, the bank may, but is not obligated to, refinance the line of credit. Subject to credit and property approval.

Loan details are as of July 2023 and may be subject to change.