The Older I Get The More I Conform

Mortgage and Lending with Guaranteed Rate, Marin County, CA NMLS: 22343

The Older I Get The More I Conform


If you know me, you know that I don't like to stick to convention.  I was the teenager who skipped college, moved to Hollywood and played rock guitar.  In my 20's, I saved up vacation time not for sandy white beaches but instead for expeditions to the harsh mountain environs of the world's highest peaks.  In my 30's, I dove (literally) into the sport of triathlon --- an endeavor, to quote my Aunt Marge, that would be something she'd "rather die a thousand deaths" before contemplating.  When I come to the fork in the road where straight and narrow diverges from the path less traveled, you can bet your best Yogi Berra'ism that I'm gonna take the latter.  So to write a blog post solely about the increase in conforming loan limits tests my own limits of conformity.  But for once, I am going to go along with the crowd and talk about pending changes coming to the San Francisco Bay Area, and across the state of California, in 2018.


Let's step back for a minute and recognize that for the entire state (and country), the current conforming loan limit for a single family residence is set at $424,100.  In many of the higher cost, coastal counties of CA, we also have a "jumbo conforming," "super conforming," or "high-balance conforming" loan limit that exceeds this limit.  For example, here in my home county of Marin, that limit is presently set at $636,150.  Let's look at how these will increase in 2018:


2017 Conforming Limit          2018 Conforming Limit

$424,100                                    $453,100


2017 High Balance Limit       2018 High Balance Limit          County

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       Marin

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       Alameda

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       Contra Costa

$575,000                                    $615,250                                       Monterey

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       Napa

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       San Benito

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       San Francisco

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       San Mateo

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       Santa Clara

$636,150                                    $679,650                                       Santa Cruz

$431,250                                    $460,000                                       Solano

$595,700                                    $648,600                                       Sonoma


We will begin to implement the new limits in December of 2017, so if you believe any of these increases will impact your purchase or refinance mortgage, please let me know.  I am a big fan of the higher limits because a conforming loan generally provides an easier qualification compared to a jumbo mortgage, and simply because we have higher home prices in the Bay Area should not be a reason to subject borrowers to a more burdensome loan process.  Yes, I realize that much of the country may not dance to the beat of my drummer.  But even though I don't conform to their point of view, my idea of conforming is increasing, and that's a step in the right direction.


We don't get fooled again, 



Robert J. Spinosa
Executive Loan Advisor
NMLS: 22343 
Cell/Text: 415-367-5959 Fax: 415-366-1590
1058 Redwood Highway, Frontage Road, Mill Valley, CA 94941




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Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Hey Rob, I like the personal twist on this one. Makes Conforming loans so much more intriguing. Have a great day. D 

Dec 12, 2017 07:25 AM #1
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi Rob - I too loved your Segway into conforming loans and the new limits! What an interesting background you’ve had! Have you written about it before?

Dec 12, 2017 07:52 AM #2
Anna Banana Kruchten CRB, CRS, Broker
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
Arizona's Top Banana of Real Estate!

Hey Rob you had me going down a fun path of thinking about all the wild and fun paths I've taken over the years - non conforming paths   And to bring it all back around to done!  You got me on this one! LOL


                                                Featured in BananaTude


Dec 12, 2017 10:07 AM #3
Dick Greenberg
New Paradigm Partners LLC - Fort Collins, CO
Northern Colorado Residential Real Estate

Hi Rob - Those new limits are still pretty anemic compared to price levels, but anything would help.

(It's been a lifetime, but I do believe that's Abby Hoffman in your picture, who I knew slightly in the 60's & early 70's. Interesting times.)

Dec 12, 2017 10:59 AM #4
David A. Weaver
Peoples Bank & Trust Co. - Scottsdale, AZ
24 years helping folks finance their dreams.

Don't put on an "Eminence Front", keep writing the good posts.  ROCK ON!!!!

Dec 12, 2017 01:02 PM #5
Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Haha, so you only conform when it comes to loan limits, such a great way to life life!

Dec 13, 2017 05:47 AM #6
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Rob Spinosa

Vice President of Mortgage Lending, Marin County
Can I Get a Jumbo Loan with 10% Down?
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