New Hampshire Mortgage Rates

Living in New Hampshire

Home to the White Mountains and the Merrimack River, New Hampshire is one of the six states that make up the New England region. In addition to some of the country’s best skiing, the Granite State’s charms include the Cannon Mountain Aerial Tramway, the first such tramway in the country, and Mount Monadnock, touted as the world’s second most oft-climbed mountain. In 2018, New Hampshire’s population was just shy of 1.4 million, and more people are moving to the state.

In New Hampshire, home prices are on the rise. As of April 2019, the median sales price in the state is currently $290,000, a 2.1% increase from April 2018, according to New Hampshire Realtors. Sellers are receiving 98.4% of their list price for single-family homes. In terms of inventory, April 2019 saw a 2.7-month supply for single-family properties, down from 3.2 months the previous April.

The number of days that homes remain on the market is also dropping. Homes were on the market for an average of 65 days in April 2019, which is a 12.2% decrease compared with the previous year. The combination of shrinking inventory and fewer days on the market, coupled with a slight increase in median sales price, suggests a buyer’s market.

The rules and costs of buying a home in New Hampshire

Every home purchase has its own guidelines and financial responsibilities. If you’re a potential homeowner in New Hampshire, here are the rules you need to know.

Home seller and buyer laws

  • What must sellers disclose?In New Hampshire, sellers are required to provide certain information to buyers. The stateproperty disclosure formcovers such topics as the home’s water supply, sewage disposal system, property location, insulation, hazardous material and other general information.
  • How does foreclosure work?Foreclosures in New Hampshire are typically nonjudicial, which means a court does not intervene. A servicer is required to provide only one notice of impending action. Thus, foreclosure in the state can happen very quickly. If no action is taken to prevent it, the owner can lose their home in less than 120 days.
  • How is property divided in divorce?New Hampshire is known as an equitable distribution state. This means that, in the event of divorce, the court will divide a couple’s property in a manner it considers fair and equitable. This does not necessarily mean that property will be divided 50/50. Additionally, the court provides couples a chance to apprise what belongs solely to one or the other.
  • Does a lawyer need to be present during a home closing?New Hampshire is an attorney state, which means that real estate closings must be handled by lawyers. An attorney is responsible for representing the buyer, and preparing mortgage documents, dealing with title paperwork and facilitating a smooth close to the deal.

Taxes

The real estate transfer tax is a tax on the sale, granting and transfer of real estate. In New Hampshire, the tax is imposed on the buyer as well as the seller at a rate of $0.75 per $100 of the sale price. Mortgage lenders are responsible for properly disclosing the exact amount of transfer taxes payable once you have indicated interest in a particular property.

The average property tax rate in New Hampshire is 1.86% of the home’s value, which works out to a median property tax of $4,636.00 for a home worth the median value of $249,700, according toTax-Rates.org. However, rates vary by county. In Rockingham County, which has the highest property taxes in the state, the average property tax bill is $5,344. Carroll County has the lowest property taxes, averaging around $2,582 per year.

New Hampshire does offer property tax exemptions. The state has an elderly exemption, a veteran’s tax credit and a veteran’s exemption.

Conforming loan limits

Theconforming loanlimit across most counties in New Hampshire is $484,350 for a single-family dwelling. In Rockingham and Strafford counties, the limit is higher at $688,850.

Conforming loan limits are the maximum origination balances that may be purchased by government-sponsored entitiesFannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Programs for homebuyers in New Hampshire

New Hampshire homebuyers may take advantage of several programs aimed to help them achieve their goal of homeownership. Depending on your specific situation, you may find that at least one program is suitable for your needs.

Home Flex Plus (FHA, VA and RD) and Home Preferred Plus (Conventional)

Both New Hampshire housing programs provide cash assistance for as much as 3% of the base loan amount to help homebuyers with their down payment and closing costs. This is issued as a second mortgage that is forgiven in full after four years, unless during that time the borrower sells, refinances or files for bankruptcy. In all of those cases, the assistance must be repaid.

The programs differ in terms of the loans they service: Home Flex Plus may be applied to FHA, VA and RD mortgages, while Home Preferred Plus is applicable to conventional loans.

Who qualifies:

  • Homebuyers with incomes up to $128,900
  • For Home Flex Plus, borrowers must complete a homebuyer education course

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Purchase Rehabilitation Mortgage Program

New Hampshire Housing’s Purchase Rehabilitation Mortgage program provides up to $35,000 in additional funding to the purchase mortgage, with as little as 3.5% down. This extra funding can assist with repairs and upgrades, including cosmetic issues, energy-efficient improvements and safety improvements. This program can be combined with Home Flex Plus.

Who qualifies:

  • Homebuyers with incomes up to $128,900

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Home Start Homebuyer Tax Credit

The Home Start Homebuyer Tax Credit provides a long-term tax benefit to helpfirst-time homebuyers in New Hampshireafford their goals of homeownership. This federal Mortgage Credit Certificate lets a homebuyer claim a tax credit for a part of the yearly mortgage interest, up to $2,000 for the life of the original loan so long as the buyer continues to live in the home.

Who qualifies:

  • Borrowers who are first-time homebuyers
  • Occupy home as primary residence
  • Homebuyers with incomes up to $128,900, depending on household size

Learn More

Rate shopping tips

Here are some ideas for best practices to keep in mind when it comes toshopping for ratesand nailing down an offer:

Contact at least 3 lenders on the same day

Rates fluctuate on a daily basis. By contacting three lenders on the same day, you can ensure you’re comparing apples to apples and be better informed about your decision.

Give each lender the same information

Providing consistent information allows lenders to accurately provide quotes — and for you to compare them equally. Make sure that you’ve collected your documentation before getting in touch with lenders, including pay stubs and bank statements. You’ll also need to provide the amount that you’re looking to borrow, the type of loan you want and the sales price of the home you’re considering.

Add up all the lender fees to confirm the costs

You won’t get the full picture of your total costs until you take into account all of the lender’s fees. Adding in each lender’s fees will also further help you compare lenders’ offerings and determine what’s truly the best offer. Fees can include origination, credit report, application fees and tax service.

Know when to lock in the rate

You can’t shop forever. At some point, you have to know when a rate is going to work for your individual financial picture ⁠— and at that point, it’s time tolock in the rate. This allows you to secure a certain rate for a set period of time, typically between 30 to 60 days.

The information in this article is accurate as of the date of publishing.