Hoping to take advantage of mortgage rates that are still historically low, more Americans are pushing into higher mortgage levels to afford more expensive homes. Lenders reported that 2021 marked the highest dollar volume in jumbo loan originations since 2005. Jumbo loans are mortgages that exceed the loan limits of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
Rates were cheaper last year, which gave buyers extra budgeting power. In 2021, mortgage rates on jumbo loans reached an all-time low.
The number of jumbo loans more than doubled in 2021 compared to the prior year, according to a new report from CoreLogic, a real estate data firm. The year-to-year comparison, however, is coming off very low numbers set in 2020 when the pandemic outbreak began in the U.S.
Still, jumbo-loan securitization in 2021 marked the largest issuance since 2007, according to CoreLogic.
Borrowers getting jumbo loans have better credit profiles than those buyers active during the housing bubble of 2005 and 2006, CoreLogic reports. Last year, borrowers with jumbo loans had an average credit score 30 points higher than that group in 2005 and 2006. Borrowers also had average loan-to-value and debt-to-income ratios that were 5 percentage points lower than those in 2005.
Jumbo loan originations are predicted to fall this year, however, as mortgage rates are expected to rise and home prices are forecast to moderate.