If you own a home but want to buy a run-down house to flip, you might be able to do this by using your home's equity. Equity refers to the difference between your home's value and your mortgage balance. You can use this money to finance a project if you want, and here are several things to know about how this works.

Evaluate Your Finances

Before you pursue this option, it might be helpful to evaluate your finances. When evaluating your finances, you should check two main things. First, what is your credit score? To qualify for an equity loan, you might need to have a decent score. Secondly, how much equity do you have in your home? You only need two details about your home to calculate the equity. First, you need to know the home's current value. Second, you need to know your mortgage balance. If you have these two amounts, you can subtract the balance by the value to reveal the equity in your home.

Determine If You Have Enough Money to Fund a Project

Once you know how much equity you have, you can decide if it is enough to complete a real estate project. If it is not enough, you could still take an equity loan to finance part of the project, but you might have to take an additional loan to fund the rest. If you need an additional loan, you can talk to a hard money lender. Hard money loans offer a way to finance real estate projects, and they are not difficult to acquire.

Find a Home to Purchase

The next step is to find a home to purchase with the money you can obtain through a hard money loan and an equity loan. You might want to hire a real estate agent for help with this step, as agents know the market and can find listings that meet your needs. When searching for a home, make sure you stick with your budget.

Visit Your Lender to Complete the Financing

After finding a home to purchase, you will need to visit your lender to complete the financing. The lender will probably require an appraisal of your home and the home you want to purchase, and your lender might also require other steps.

If you need an equity loan or hard money loan, talk to a local lender to determine if you qualify.