Q&A

Honolulu Star-Advertiser - - SPENDING WELL / THE NEW YORK TIMES -

Do I have to use a home-eq­uity line of credit right away?

Some lenders re­quire a “min­i­mum draw” when you close on the line of credit, Mr. McBride said. So make sure it meets the tim­ing of your project. If you must bor­row $10,000 right off the bat, but your con­trac­tor can’t sched­ule you right away, you’ll pay in­ter­est un­nec­es­sar­ily.

Is there a dis­ad­van­tage to us­ing a fixed-rate home-eq­uity loan for a re­model?

Loans are made in a lump sum. You can’t bor­row more if your project goes over bud­get. Re­volv­ing lines of credit are more flex­i­ble. You bor­row as you need the money, Mr. McBride said.

Can I deduct the in­ter­est I pay on a home-eq­uity loan or line of credit?

Gen­er­ally, yes. But check with your tax ad­viser.

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