Charlotte, North Carolina: Jumbo vs. Conforming Loan Limits

September 19, 2019 | By Brandon Cornett | © 2019, QualifiedMortgage.org | Our copyright policy

Key highlights from this article:

  • The conforming loan limit for Charlotte North Carolina is $484,350.
  • This means a jumbo loan in Charlotte is anything above that amount.
  • This applies to conventional mortgages that are not insured by the government.

Conforming / Jumbo Loan Limits in Charlotte, North Carolina

In 2019, the limit for a conforming loan in Charlotte, North Carolina is $484,350. Home buyers who need to borrow more than that amount will end up using what’s known as a “jumbo” loan.

Definition: a conforming home loan is one that meets or conforms to the guidelines and standards set forth by the Federal Housing Finance Agency, or FHFA. These loans can be sold into the secondary mortgage market through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

When a mortgage loan does not meet those standards (as is the case with a jumbo loan), it is referred to as a non-conforming mortgage. It therefore cannot be sold to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

Here are the 2019 conforming loan limits for Charlotte, North Carolina:

One-unit property: $484,350
Two-unit property: $620,200
Three-unit property: $749,650
Four-unit property: $931,600

Technically speaking, there is no “jumbo loan limit” for the Charlotte area. This commonly used phrase is actually a misnomer. There is a conforming loan limit, which is currently set at $484,350 in 2019. Anything above that amount would be considered a jumbo loan.

So it’s more accurate to think of the $484,350 limit as a threshold for where a jumbo mortgage loan begins.

Applies to the Entire Metro Area

The jumbo loan threshold for Charlotte, North Carolina is the same for the entire metro area. While conforming mortgage limits can vary from one county to the next, they are typically the same across an entire metro area.

Th jumbo loan amount mentioned above applies to the entire Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia metropolitan area, and all of Mecklenburg County.

Some things to know about these “oversized” mortgage products:

  • Generally speaking, jumbo loans have stricter qualification requirements for borrowers. That’s because there’s a larger amount of money being borrowed, and therefore higher risk to the lender.
  • Jumbo loans typically have lower mortgage rates than their smaller counterparts. That may seem counterintuitive, but it’s true.
  • If you want to qualify for a jumbo loan in Charlotte, you may have to put down more money than someone seeking a smaller loan. Mortgage lenders often have higher down-payment requirements for jumbo products.

Charlotte FHA Loans Have Their Own Limits

It’s also important to realize that the limits for conventional and FHA loans are not always the same. That’s because they’re established by two separate housing agencies.

Conforming loan limits apply to conventional mortgages that are not insured by the government. Those caps are established by the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

FHA home loans, on the other hand, are insured by the federal government. Those limits are established by the Department of Housing And Urban Development, or HUD.

In 2019, the FHA loan limit for Charlotte, North Carolina is set at $317,400. That’s for a single-family property, specifically.

You might have noticed that the FHA limits for Charlotte are set quite a bit lower than the conforming / jumbo threshold. This is true for many cities across the country. The FHA program was not designed for high-end luxury home purchases. That program was originally created to serve home buyers in the low- to moderate-income brackets. So it’s only natural that those limits would be set lower.

Will They Go up to 2020?

Federal housing officials review conforming loan limits every year to see how they are matching up with the median home prices for individual counties. When home prices rise significantly over the course of the year, the conforming / jumbo loan limits can be revised upward to reflect those changes.

But that probably won’t be the case for Charlotte, North Carolina, as we transition from 2019 to 2020. Home prices in and around Charlotte have certainly risen over the past year or so — but probably not enough to justify higher loan limits in 2020.

When this article was published in September 2019, the median home price in Charlotte was around $230,000. That’s well below the conforming cap for 2019, which is set at $484,350. So there’s a good chance the current jumbo / conforming loan limits for Charlotte will simply be carried over into 2020 without any changes.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency typically announces changes for the following year at the end of the current year. So we will know more by December of this year.

But as it stands, the conforming / jumbo loan limit for Charlotte is set at $484,350. That’s for a single-family property. There are higher limits and thresholds for multifamily properties, such as duplexes.

Recap of Key Points

We’ve covered a lot of information and data in this article. Here’s a recap of the key points.

  • The conforming / jumbo mortgage loan threshold for Charlotte, North Carolina is $484,350 in 2019.
  • That cap applies to the entire Charlotte-Concorde-Gastonia metropolitan area, and all of Mecklenburg County.
  • Anything greater than that amount is considered a jumbo mortgage loan, which means it’s too big to be sold to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.
  • Jumbo mortgage products often have stricter requirements due to the larger amount being borrowed, but they typically have lower rates than conforming loans.
  • The FHA program has its own set of limits, and they are different than the ones mentioned above. In 2019, the FHA loan limit for a single-family home purchase in Charlotte, North Carolina is $317,400.
  • The median home price for the Charlotte area is currently well below the conforming / jumbo loan limit. Because of that, we do not expect to see an increase in these limits for 2020. (At least not for this metro area.)

Note: If you would like to download a PDF document or Excel spreadsheet with all of the conforming caps, visit www.LoanLimits.org.