Credit scores are important for qualifying for a mortgage and snagging the best rates. And what consumers do with their finances leading up to the application process can have a big impact on how high—or low—their credit score gets.
With home prices rapidly rising over the past year, homeowners are sitting on a lot of equity and some are being tempted to take a portion of it out to use for other purposes, like paying for remodeling projects, medical expenses, or for other reasons.
LendingTree researchers analyzed more than 500 home equity loans requests in 40 of the largest metros to find out the type of impact that can have on their credit scores. Credit scores are important if the borrower is wishing to secure a loan, such as selling their home to get a new mortgage.
Many borrowers do see a decrease in their credit score after taking out a home equity loan. But the decline tends to be fairly small and their credit score usually recovers in less than a year, the LendingTree analysis finds.
The study finds that credit scores take an average of about 96 days to recover from their pre-loan levels after taking out a home equity loan.
Certain areas of the country may see less of an impact after a home equity loan than others. Take a look at this chart to see the differences and find the potential impact in your metro area.