East Texas home sales surge

By Jena Johnson - bio | email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - A surprising boom in the midst of a recession, the U.S. housing market surged 7 percent last month, making it the largest monthly increase in ten years. East Texas homebuilders and realtors say the low interest rates and government incentives have home buyers on the move.

Packed boxes surround Cindi Andrews. "We are looking forward to many years here and being happy as a family here," said Cindi Andrews, new homeowner.

As second time home buyers, the Andrews family jumped at the opportunity to make a move. "The time was right for us to sell and the time was right for us to buy," said John Andrews, new homeowner.

They needed more space for their two large dogs and growing daughter. "That was probably our primary reason for moving here," said Cindi. "That and we just loved the area."

Their previous home sold in two weeks. "It seemed like the perfect storm," said John. "The interest rates were at near all time lows, the housing market locally seemed to be retaining the value."

The Andrews realtor said the sudden spike in the housing market is just the beginning. "In the month of August, I think we're going to beat the sales for last year," said Louise Wideman, Century 21 realtor.

Homebuilder Mike Hineman said first time buyers are packing-up and taking advantage of the government's $8,000 tax break.

"Right now is the absolute best time to buy a house in years, just because the cost of building is so low and the cost of your loan is going to be the lowest it's been in years."

As Cindi rummages through countless boxes scattered across her new home, she finds a pair of extra hands come in handy with unpacking.

Homebuilders tell us the East Texas Parade of Homes earlier this month was a huge success, giving them even more hope the housing market is making a comeback.

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