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Jumbo Rates Show Little Movement And Remain Attractive

Steady is the best word to describe jumbo mortgage rates over the last few days. When compared to last week, the current jumbo loan rates have fluctuated by just a few basis points. Conforming mortgage rates have seen a similar level of fluctuation, although some analysts are pointing out that there is a possibility that interest rates in general could begin to take on an upward trend. This has already resulted in a slight dip in mortgage applications, although the decrease can also be attributed to the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

The biggest news related to the home loan lending industry failed to have a strong effect on jumbo mortgage rates. In late November, the nation’s legislators in Washington, D.C. voted on a resolution to increase the conforming loan limits to levels seen before October 1, 2011. The resolution allows the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to guarantee conforming home loans up to $729,750. This measure is expected to give borrowers and home shoppers more options in a housing market that’s still burdened by tight credit and underwriting guidelines.

The new loan limits will be in effect for another two years. They are supposed to alleviate some of the encumbrances experienced by mortgage and real estate professionals in the luxury housing markets such as Honolulu, New York City, Palm Beach, and Santa Monica. The conforming loan limits had dropped to $625,500 back on October 1; a move that real estate analysts considered unreasonable given the anemic conditions of the housing market economy. Lobbyists supporting the higher loan limits pointed out that although more jumbo loans could have been produced as a result of the lower amounts, banks are not ready to build up extensive portfolios of jumbo mortgages. The current jumbo loan rates may be attractive to potential home buyers and borrowers considering a refinance, but jumbo products aren’t as marketable as FHA-backed home loans.

Credit requirements and lending guidelines for jumbo loans aren’t expected to change anytime soon. Applicants interested in jumbo home loan products must have credit scores and history which underwriters must deem as better than average. Stable employment histories are being carefully reviewed, and lending institutions are demanding that jumbo borrowers have enough assets that can be used as reserves to cover mortgage payments.