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Assumable mortgage written on a clipboard and a man's hand holding the keys to a house
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Beat High Rates With an Assumable Mortgage

Assumable mortgages, with low rates transferred from a homeowner to a buyer, are making a comeback but the process can be difficult.

NEW YORK – Assumable mortgages are one way that home buyers can obtain a lower interest rate than the current rate of nearly 7%. Startups like Roam list homes with assumable low-rate loans and helps home buyers go through the process. also started tagging assumable mortgage properties on its website and made them searchable to help buyers locate them. Other smaller companies and agents are compiling lists of assumable properties and charge homeowners a fee to help navigate the process. The data and technology firm Intercontinental Exchange said about 23% or 12.2 million active mortgages are assumable, but the number of assumptions is a small portion of house sales.

However, the number of assumable mortgage sales is on the rise with 6,000 sales completed in 2023, representing a 139% increase from 2022. About 3,896 assumptions have been completed so far in 2024. Intercontinental Exchange said about two-thirds of assumable mortgages with rates below 4% have been taken out in the last three years. However, there are hurdles to getting an assumable mortgage.

“Since many homes have rapidly appreciated in price, and the assumed loans are partly paid down, there may be a significant gap between the purchase price and the remaining mortgage,” the New York Times reported. For the buyer, that means a larger down payment or qualifying for a second mortgage to close the gap.

Another hurdle is the process itself because mortgage servicers can take a longer time handling these types of sales.

Source: New York Times (05/09/24) Bernard, Tara Siegel

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