It helps if you think about this in broader terms than just housing-related credit. Maybe I'm getting a loan to pay off a parent's, child's, or other family member's debts, taxes, medical expenses, or other living costs. Or, maybe I need to borrow the cash necessary to post bail for Uncle Joe. Or, maybe Uncle Joe is starting a business and I have the "opportunity" to invest at the ground level. In all of these cases, I wouldn't borrow unless the ultimate beneficiary is a family member.