Jumbo loans are when the amount sought to purchase a home exceeds the conforming loan limit. The current loan limits discussed below can be found at www.hud.gov or www.fhfa.gov/Default.aspx?Page=185 and are valid through December 31, 2013. If you are considering a single-family home requiring a mortgage that exceeds $417,000, for all states except Hawaii and Alaska, but you live in a federally designated high-priced market (such as California) the limit is increased to $625,500. Conforming high balance areas provide loans generally that have higher interest rates and stricter underwriting requirements than standard conforming loans, but are generally priced lower than jumbo loans. Remember that jumbo loans can have higher interest rates compared to a conforming loan and vary lender to lender so you should ask each one about the specific costs associated with the same. In addition, you should also discuss obtaining a first and second loan, which is more complicated and no everyone will be eligible or qualify for this option. You should talk to each lender you shop with to understand the loan limits, rates, options and costs associated with purchasing a jumbo loan for your area.