Obtaining a mortgage has grown slightly more difficult over the past several years due to a tightening of the credit requirements banks look for in borrowers. The Mortgage Bankers Association's Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI) released last week, which tracks trends in the ease or challenges of obtaining a home loan, shows just that.
The index fell by 0.4 percent in August, an indication of a tightening of lending standards. Credit availability has had a notable increase since the Great Recession but has recently leveled off.
Lynn Fisher, MBA's Vice President of Research and Economics noted one area in which lending practices have eased for consumers. "The Jumbo MCAI increased by 0.5 percent, indicating that credit conditions continue to ease among jumbo loan programs."
A jumbo mortgage is one where the borrowed amount is above conventional loan limits set by Federal regulations. For most of the U.S. that limit is currently $417,000.
Today, conforming no-point 30-year fixed rates averaging 3.375 percent while the 15-year rate is near 2.75 percent.
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