The home equity industry is forging a link between mortgage lending and credit cards with a product that lets homeowners borrow up to 125% of their home's value.

Business is booming, participants said, fueled by demand from homeowners who are loaded down with credit card debt. Taking out a second mortgage and using it to pay off credit cards helps bring down monthly bills. Interest rates on the product range through the low to mid-teens, compared with credit card rates averaging 18%.

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