East Texas home buyers should take advantage of super low interest rates

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - By Morgan Thomas - bio | email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – Despite a national housing crisis, it's a buyer's market in East Texas. On top of a steady housing market - interest rates continue to fall.

So, if you're on the fence about selling or buying a new home... it's time to get off.

"I think home values are holding their own.  It's been a pretty good market," said Bancorp South Branch President, Joe Rich.

Plus, interest rates are so low, even a 30-year veteran of the mortgage loan business can't believe it, "I never thought we'd see this.  I'd bet anything I had we'd never see interest rates this low," said Rich.

Lufkin realtor Kara Gee says these interest rates will allow her to show bigger, better homes.

"You're not going to be spending - paying - that money on the interest on your loan.  You'll be putting that money towards your house," American Real Estate Agent, Kara Gee.

Unfortunately, time is not on your side.

"Interest rates vary day-to-day - they fluctuate.  And what might not seem like much in a day - if you wait too long could cost you significantly if they go up just a couple of points," said Gee.

She's right.  By comparing the monthly payments of a 100 thousand dollar home, based on interest rates at 4.5 and 6.5 percent.  That's a difference of a hundred and twenty five bucks a month (Source: Mortgagecalculator.org).

"That opens doors for people looking to buy a home.  We hope people in East Texas take advantage of that," said Gee.

These historically low interest rates could have the biggest impact on renters.  On a monthly basis your mortgage could be cheaper than the rent your paying for your apartment.

"A lot of first time home-buyers' problem is the down payment, but there's a lot of homes out there where they don't have to have whole lot down.  They can have money gifted to them and get into a home cheaper than they can rent," said Rich.

Home-owners waiting to put their house on the market need to pull the trigger.

"The low interest rates are helping get buyers in this home," said Gee.

Joe Rich Bancorp South's Lufkin Branch President says when he got in the mortgage loan business it wasn't uncommon to see double digit interest rates.

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