Your home is your biggest asset. It does not just provide you shelter; it also comes to your aid when you are in financial distress. The equity of your home, built over the years, can be used to obtain loans by acting as the collateral. You can find two types of home equity debt, namely in the form of home equity loans and also in the form of home equity lines of credit otherwise known as HELOCs. Both of them are described as second mortgages, because just like the primary mortgage, the equity loan is also secured by your property. But unlike the first mortgage, the equity debt is repaid over a shorter span of time. The first mortgage is usually repaid over a span of 30 years, whereas the equity loan is usually paid within fifteen years. However, there are exceptions and the repayment period may be as short as 5 years and as long as 30 years.The growing popularity of home equity loan generally coincides with the recent surge in property value and relatively lower rate of interest. Thus more and more homeowners are turning to home equity loans for managing their personal debts. Other advantages of the home equity loan also include lower interest rate and tax deductions, making this mode of debt even more popular.So far as the equity rate of interest is concerned, it is slightly higher than the first mortgage, but considerably lower than credit card loans or other consumer loan interests. Because your property is used as the collateral in equity loans, lenders consider them as secure as the first mortgage.The tax deduction feature may be the biggest reason behind the huge popularity of home equity loans. Mortgage debt comes with attractive tax savings compared to lets say consumer loans, thus it is highly cost effective to consolidate your other debts with this loan and enjoy lower interest rate plus tax deduction benefits at the same time.With these benefits, namely considerably low rates for equity debt and tax deduction on the interest payments, it is no wonder that a number of homeowners are utilizing the equity of their homes to meet further expenses and debts. True, it is a mortgage on your precious home, but if you are able to pay back the entire amount within a short span of time and you have stable income, home equity loan is a good option for much needed credit.