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Low mortgage rates making home-buying popular

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Posted at 6:56 AM, Sep 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-03 08:02:34-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The kids are heading back to school, which typically means home sales start to slow down across the state. That is not the case here in Corpus Christi.

In fact, home sales are booming not only in Corpus Christi, but across the state.

The Texas housing market experienced a strong kickoff to the summer selling season with more than 100,000 homes sold during the second quarter.

“Home sales compared to last year have been up as an industry, averaging about 10 percent,” said MPM Home builder Moses Mostaghasi. "For us, we have been up about 25 percent."

Locally, sellers are selling for a slightly higher median price, and buyers have access to more properties for sale statewide.

“Right now we are about $210,000 for our median home prices,” said Mostaghasi. "And that is up about 5.5 percent from last year."

Navy Army Community Credit Union Chief Lending Officer Roman Escobar said the big reason for the increase in summer home sales is the low mortgage rate. The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.5 percent, the lowest rate since 2016.

“Mortgage rates are down one percent over the last year," Escobar said. "It is the best time to actually buy, build, or refinance your home. We don’t know how long the mortgage rates are going to be down."

These low rates also give many homeowners who bought their homes during the last three years, when market rates were higher, an opportunity to have a financial incentive to refinance.

“If you are building, this might be the time where you are actually looking to go into your permanent home," Escobar said. "If you are a first-time buyer, make sure your credit is in good condition. If it is not there, then do the things that are necessary to actually get there."

Lower mortgage interest rates in recent months also are impacting our economy.

“It influences how people shop, it influences taxes, it influences some economy factors in local areas and global economies that actually are paying huge dividends,” said Escobar.

It is a great market right now, and homes are moving quickly. The only problem for many home builders is building them fast enough.