Improving jumbo mortgage market could help homebuyers invest in thriving Bay State communities

Homebuyers who look at real estate in Boston often consider downtown communities like the Back Bay and Beacon Hill for their proximity to city amenities. However, when it comes to buying property in superlative school systems, many Bay State residents look to neighborhoods just outside Boston. These communities offer ideal educational programs and easy access to the Hub, but many of these towns are also home to higher-priced properties.

Boston Globe contributor Rona Fischman says that whenever Boston Magazine releases its annual school review, the same communities crop up in the top 20. Fischman goes on to cite Weston, Lexington, Dover-Sherborn Regional, Concord-Carlisle, Wellesley, Wayland, Newton South, Sharon High, Acton-Boxborough Regional and Bedford as educational hubs that garner national attention year after year. Prospective buyers who want to move to neighborhoods with top-notch education systems may want to consider any one of the aforementioned facilities. Below are two communities with excellent education programs and high-value homes.

Wellesley, MA, 02481
Wellesley residents have a median household income of $162,013, according to ZipDataMaps, and its residents benefit from stellar learning programs across the board. However, for people who want to move to the area, the average real estate sale price is $1,347,783, so it's essential to have proper financial backing in place before searching for available homes.

Lexington, MA, 02421
The 10-square-mile Lexington community is home to another fantastic education system, but residents have to put a hefty down payment on property in order to secure a home. The current median household income is $131,694, according to ZipDataMaps. Additionally, the average real estate sale price is $786,682, which is more affordable than Wellesley, but still a significant amount of money.

Fortunately for homebuyers looking into these towns, the jumbo mortgage market, or loans over $417,000, is improving. The number of jumbo mortgages approved in Massachusetts by lenders doubled in 2011 compared to 2010, and rates are expected to exceed 2011's total of almost 14,000 loans in 2012, according to Warren Group.

"One of the key reasons for the improvement in housing is that credit is becoming more available," Chief Economist for Moody's Analytics Mark Zandi said to the Boston Globe.

Jumbo loans accounted for 9 percent of mortgage applications in Massachusetts in July 2012, compared to 6 percent nationally, the news source reports. These types of loans may help homebuyers purchase property in communities like Wellesley and Lexington.