National trends show potential first-time home buyers are backing off because of economic hardships, and there aren't as many houses to pick from.
June Rockford area numbers show some recovery. And one a couple seems to have found a home against the odds.
For Belvidere residents Jacob and Daisy Mathison, in their hunt for the perfect home, third time's the charm.
"Well we've been looking for about a year. We did have two other homes that fell through. One was a foreclosure and we actually just lost that bid," says Daisy. "And the other one was a short sale and we actually waited about six months without hearing anything. And then we found this house and that process went relatively well."
Their last experience gives new meaning to the term short sale - even though this is a former foreclosure. The "blue house", as the Mathison's two daughters call it, took five weeks to close.
And that wasn't the only factor cut down.
Daisy says, "We were able to save twice as much money in the time that we were looking."
Rockford Area Realtors CEO Steve Bois says it's all about affordability. So far this summer, local home prices are on the rise. So are interest rates. When it comes to more expensive mortgages, Bois says it's all about location, location, location.
According to Bois, "Where that's going to be a problem is in some of the higher price per average income areas like the Los Angeles area, some of the coasts, and that kind of thing. I think that they will be concerned about that interest rate - we are as well but I don't think that will impact us as much."
In the Rockford area, home sales are increasing alongside prices. Those numbers are up 6% from this time last year. There are more homes for sale too. Inventory is up 5% percent from May. But it's about 25% shy of June 2012's numbers.
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