HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Hattiesburg bankers, realtors and builders announced some good news about the local housing market.
"It's a great time to buy a house," said President of the Hattiesburg Area Association of Realtors, Betty Jo Ison.
"We are trying to be sure that people here in Hattiesburg realize maybe it is not as bad as something that they see on the national news," said Vice President of the Greater Hattiesburg Home Builders Association, David Saulters.
Thursday morning, at Community Bank in Hattiesburg the group announced the Hub City's real estate market is off to a great start this year. Ison says it's more of a buyers market than a sellers.
"We have had a lot of contracts and buyers already this year, our pending sales are up 155 on the market right now. We have already close 70 houses," said Ison.
Executive Vice President at The First Bank, Hayden Mitchell says he has seen all time historic lows in interest rates.
"Interest rates for 30 year money is about 3.625 for conventional, around 2.75 for 15 year conventional, and the FHA or VA rates are about three and a quarter for 30 year and about 2.5 for 15 years," said Mitchell.
President of the Hattiesburg Home Builders Association, Lee Everett and Saulters are builders. They say existing home inventory is shrinking which is good news for them.
"When that happens people start turning around wanting to look for new homes. It becomes even more and more of a new construction market," said Saulters.
Charles Greer of Greer Law Firm adds as a closing attorney he has a good grasp on the pulse of the local housing market.
"I'm glad to say that over the course of the last year we've really seen a lot of improvement both in home sales and the rates have continued to remain low," said Greer.
Loan Originator at Magnolia State Bank, Dick Munton offered some last words of caution.
"I think a lot of people are going to be kicking themselves down the road if they didn't take advantage of this opportunity," said Munton.