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What Is a Second Mortgage?

October 12th, 2022 | 6 min. read

What Is a Second Mortgage?

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Ever heard of the term second mortgage? If you have, have you ever wondered if you should get one?

bubble - house key with second mortgage and white penSecond mortgages are a popular way for homeowners to borrow money. They can be used for a variety of reasons, such as home repairs or renovations, paying off high-interest debt, or financing a child's education. But before you decide to get one, it's important to understand what they are and how they work.

 Here, we'll answer your questions and what you need to know about second mortgages to help you determine if it's right for you.  


take a quick look at what we'll cover

Second-Mortgage-Iconwhat is a second mortgage?

A second mortgage is a secondary loan that can be used for home improvement projects, debt consolidation, or other purposes. There are two main types of second mortgages: home equity loans and home equity lines of credit (HELOCs).

Home equity loans are lump-sum loans with fixed interest rates, while HELOCs are revolving lines of credit that can be used as needed. Second mortgages typically have higher interest rates than first mortgages, and they also involve additional fees. These products can be a good option for borrowers who need extra cash, but it’s important to understand the pros and cons before applying.

Both a home equity loan and a HELOC allow the borrower to borrow against the equity in their homes.

home equity loans

home equity lines of credit (heloc)

piggyback mortgage loan


Law-Iconwhat are the benefits and drawbacks of a second mortgage?



Who is a second mortgage ideal for?

bubble - house with money plant

A second mortgage is ideal for homeowners who need extra money for a variety of reasons. The most common reason people take out a second mortgage is to make home improvements on the current home. Other popular reasons include debt consolidation, paying for college tuition, and making a large purchase.

QUICK TIP: Before taking out a second mortgage, make sure you have enough equity in your home to qualify for a second mortgage.  You will also need to have a good credit score and a steady income to qualify for a second mortgage. 

If you aren't sure if you qualify for a second mortgage, our Mortgage Loan Officers can help! You can send an email, give us a call at 704.375.0183 x 1525, or visit any of our branches.


Bank-Icon-1second mortgage vs. mortgage refinance: what's the difference?

Shockingly enough, borrowers who are thinking about getting a second mortgage also think about refinancing their mortgage instead.  Since they both require the borrower to have a home with equity to essentially get cash back in your pocket, here are some differences.  


Mortgage Refinancing

As its name suggests, with mortgage refinance, you're taking out a new loan to replace the existing one. This means that you'll have to go through the entire loan application process again, including getting your credit score checked and providing income and asset documentation. However, refinancing can help you get a lower interest rate and could save you money over the long term if your credit score has improved, have a lower debt-to-income ratio, and you plan on staying in your home for many years to come. 


Second Mortgage 

With a second mortgage, you're simply adding on to the original loan. You don't have to go through the lengthy application process again, but you will have to make two separate payments each month - one for the original loan and one for the new second mortgage. Additionally, second mortgages often come with higher interest rates than first mortgages, so they may not be the best option if you're trying to keep your monthly payments low.



Via Giphy

Ultimately, whether you choose to refinance or take out a second mortgage will depend on your individual circumstances. If you're confident that you can get approved for a new loan and are planning on staying in your home for the long haul, refinancing may be the best option for you.

However, if you're not interested in going through the application process again or want to keep your monthly payments as low as possible, taking out a second mortgage might be the way to go. Whichever route you choose, make sure to compare offers from multiple lenders so that you can get the best deal possible.


should i get a second mortgage?

When considering whether to take out a second mortgage, there are several things to consider. Like, how much equity Equity is the portion of your home that you own outright; it's the difference between your home's appraised value and your outstanding mortgage balance. do you have in your home?  If you have a lot of equity, you may be able to qualify for a home equity loan or HELOC (home equity line of credit). These loans typically have lower interest rates than conventional loans, making them a good option if you need to borrow a large amount of money.

However, they also require that you have good credit and sufficient income to make the monthly payments. Additionally, keep in mind that taking out a second mortgage will increase your monthly mortgage payments. If you're already having difficulty making your mortgage payments or managing other debt, taking out a second mortgage could make financial matters worst and put you at risk of foreclosure. Before taking out a second mortgage, be sure to carefully consider all your options and speak with a financial advisor to get more information.

Our Mortgage Loan Officers are here for you. You can send an email, give us a call at 704.375.0183 x 1525, or visit any of our branches


Want more mortgage options? 

If you haven't found your home yet and are simply looking for some mortgage options, here are some you could choose from that may be right for you. 

Find Which Mortgage Option Is Right for You




As the Content Specialist and author of the Learning & Guidance Center, Yanna enjoys motivating others by uncovering all that's possible in the world of finance. From financial tips and tricks to ultimate guides and comparison charts, she is obsessed with finding ways to help readers excel in their journey towards financial freedom.

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