Modest-size mortgage applications shrink even as mid-level and jumbo applications have seen growth in the first quarter of 2015, the Mortgage Bankers Association says.

In its Chart of the Week, the MBA shows how in 2014, purchase applications for mortgages of less than $417,000 declined on a year-over-year basis.

But in the first quarter of 2015, purchase applications for amounts between $150,000 to $300,000 and $300,000 to $417,000 began to show growth over the previous year’s levels.

The $150,000 and under category continued to shrink by more than 10% in that time period.

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(Source: Mortgage Bankers Association)

Applications for some jumbo loan sizes increased in 2014, mainly in the $417,000 to $625,000 range and in the greater than $729,000 range.

This growth in jumbos was consistent with credit availability trends captured in the MBA’s Mortgage Credit Availability Index.

The MBA says that the home purchase market is slowly beginning to regain some footing as households have become confident in their income expectations and job prospects.

But as has been the case for a while, they note that entry-level buyers continue to be impacted by factors such as tight credit, student loan debt, and regulatory challenges.