Sweat Equity Meaning

(idiomatic, real estate, business) An investment of labour, typically by the owner and often his or her family, usually in a small business or personal residence that increases the value of the business or residence.

Example:   My wife and I have put a lot of sweat equity into our home: I did the renovations and she did the redecorating.
1949, U.S. House of Representatives, Housing amendments of 1949: Hearing before the Committee on Banking and Currency[1], U.S. Govt. Printing Office, page 203:
  Mr. TALLE: His time and his wife's time in that article is called the "sweat equity".
Mr. GRIGGS: Look at the fun they had doing it.