Is a home-equity line of credit as good as cash? Financial advisors say you should have enough cash savings to last six months to a year if you no longer have a paycheck or if some disaster should befall you. Cash is certainly the best for your rainy-day fund. But, if you qualify, a home-equity line of credit (HELOC) is a low-cost alternative, say the experts at CNN Money. HELOC interest rates average about 4.4 percent right now. For a $50,000 line, interest you would pay on a line of credit that size is tax-deductible, which is another plus. Some HELOCs do carry inactivity fees and some charge for closing the line within three years, so ask about these matters. Others can refuse to let you take more money out of the line if your credit score drops significantly. When you leave the money there for emergencies, it can be a good deal. But available cash can be tempting. Using some or most of it for vacations or large non-emergency purchases, will drain the account and could put your home at risk. Before plunging into a home equity line, decide if you have the financial self-control to use it as intended. If not, you could end up with a very small amount of rainy day money and another monthly bill to pay. According to USA Today, only 8 percent of workers and 12 percent of retirees have $10,000 to $24,999 in savings and investments.