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Suffering from a lack of equity and blamed for playing a role in the housing crisis, home equity lending largely dried up during the Great Recession. However, it is coming back at both credit unions and banks as equity in some markets rises and rates remain low.

Back during the era of bad HELOCs leading up to 2006 and 2007, borrowers with already overvalued real estate would cash in their rising equity and spend the money on consumer goods, vacations, SUVs and bling. Real estate was king. Prices would keep going up, and all a savvy homeowner had to do was keep cycling between HELOCs and refinancing to turn his or her hardest of hard assets into cash.

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