On November, 18th, 2011, President Obama signed off on returning the maximum loan amounts for FHA-backed mortgages to $729,750 for New Jersey (the limit had dropped to $625,500). However, the limit for Fannie-Mae- and Freddie-Mac-conforming mortgages remains at $625,000. The increase in the loan limit for FHA-backed-loans is great news for the local housing market. Increasing the amount of the loan limit back to it’s previous levels means that mortgage money remains available to buyers who might not qualify for non-FHA-backed mortgages (i.e., because of their credit, the amount they are borrowing, etc.). Additionally, these FHA-backed loans are appealing to buyers for whom FHA programs offer lower interest rates than Fannie-Mae- and Freddie-Mac-conforming loans. Regardless of the reasons for a buyer choosing to purchase with an FHA-backed mortgage, the higher loan limits are good news. Any support in helping buyers enter into real estate transactions will support the restoration of property values in our local real estate market, but in particular, these loan limits are essential where property values are significantly higher than the national average.