Defining home equity

Home equity is an important source of wealth for homeowners. According to a study by the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), access to home equity contributes to the purchasing power of homeowners. The study also suggests that home equity has a larger impact on consumer spending than wealth derived from stock equity.

Market Value

Home equity derives in part from the market value of your home. The basic market value of your home is based on the price a buyer is willing to pay and the price a seller is willing accept. Market value is influenced by prevailing economic conditions, the supply and demand for housing and the cost of mortgage loan funds. To account for the effects of all these factors on market value, compare your home to the sale price of similar homes in your neighborhood.  Contact the appraisers at for your home value questions.

Outstanding Debt

The market value of your home is compared against the outstanding debt on your mortgage. The outstanding debt on your home is based on the principal of your loan. The principal is the amount you borrowed to finance the purchase of your home. Your monthly mortgage payments pay down the principal and pay your lender interest.

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