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Understanding How Jumbo Loans Work

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What is a Jumbo Loan?

A jumbo mortgage, or jumbo loan, is used to finance more expensive residential properties, including luxury homes as well as homes in highly competitive local markets. In 2021, in most of the country, this means single-unit properties that cost more than $548,250. Bethpage offers jumbo mortgages from $548,251 up to $1,500,000 in most locations.

Jumbo loans differ from what are called “conforming loans” because they exceed the amount backed by federal agencies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Conforming loan limits are set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) for each county in the United States. Although most counties are subject to the $548,250 limit, around 200 locations in the country — including Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties — are designated as high-cost areas. The upper limit for conforming loans in most of these areas for a single-family home is $822,375. Jumbo mortgage loans cover amounts above this limit.

Jumbo Loan Requirements
What is the difference between jumbo and conforming loans?

Jumbo loans can be used to purchase 1-4 unit properties. The minimum amount for a jumbo loan goes up with the number of units. So, for example, a buyer will need a jumbo loan for a 2-unit property if the desired loan amount exceeds $653,550 ($980,325 in high-cost areas) or for a 4-unit property if the loan amount exceeds $981,700 ($1,472,550 in high-cost areas).

Jumbo loans can be used for primary residences, second homes, or investment properties. Bethpage offers jumbo mortgages on:

  • Owner occupied properties: one, two, three or four units, condominiums, planned unit developments and cooperatives (co-ops)*
  • Second homes: one unit, condominiums, and cooperatives (co-ops)*
  • Non-owner occupied properties: one, two, three or four units, condominiums, and planned unit developments

Because jumbo loans aren’t backed by federal agencies as conforming mortgages are, their credit requirements tend to be more stringent. Borrowers seeking a jumbo loan typically need to have both better credit and larger down payments, compared to those who are applying for a smaller mortgage.

Types of Jumbo Mortgages Available

Jumbo mortgage options are available for purchase or refinance. Bethpage offers both fixed- and adjustable-rate options:

  • Fixed-rate loans are available with 10-year, 15-year and 30-year terms (up to $1,500,000).
  • Adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) programs are available up to $1,500,000. Jumbo HELOCs (home equity lines of credit) are also available, enabling homeowners to borrow against the value they have accumulated in their property.

What to Consider When Applying to A Jumbo Loan and the Mortgage Process

At Bethpage, our focus is on helping our members. Getting a jumbo mortgage from us comes with all the benefits of a product designed by an expert team with your best interests in mind.

We have lots of information to help you get started, if you’re considering a jumbo loan. Check current jumbo mortgage rates and learn about loan restrictions by state. Learn more about the mortgage process.

You can also use our simple mortgage calculators to:


And be sure to contact our Jumbo Mortgage Specialists to discuss the best options for you and assist you in applying for your loan.