By April Abernathy
For The Herald Bulletin
Despite lingering foreclosures, the real estate market continues to entice and benefit those looking to purchase a new home.
Foreclosure rates have remained steady, however; the number of listings in Madison County has decreased.
“There are 789 properties on the market,” Barbara Sylvester, a real estate agent for F.C. Tucker/O.C. Clark Realtors, “It’s the lowest number we’ve seen in years.”
Ted Moss, a real estate agent for Prudential, agreed, saying now is a good time to try to sell because inventory is so low.
“There aren’t as many homes to look at and that’s good for the sellers,” he said.
Sylvester said her company saw record sales in February. Fellow F.C. Tucker/O.C. Clark Realtors agent Fran Plummer attributes the sales to low interest rates.
Moss said most Realtors he knew have been “busy, busy, busy.”
“We’ve been hearing they (the rates) will continue to be good through 2013,” she said. “We’re slowly seeing a turnaround in the buyers’ market as well.”
Sylvester said the average sale price on homes rose from 2009 to 2010 and continued to rise from 2010 to 2011.
“Although we don’t track new people moving to the county, the stigma that everyone is leaving is just not true,” she said. “There are lots of great things in Madison County.”
“There’s a lot to try here and that accommodates a lot of people’s varying interests,” Plummer said. “I think we’ll see a very good 2012 and 2013.”
Moss predicted a turnaround in the market within Madison County. He said people were ready to buy and sell and the combination of low interest rates and cooperative weather was fueling the market.
“As a whole, Madison County seems to be doing very well right now,” he said. “We probably took the hardest hit first with GM and manufacturing leaving, but we’ve really stabilized and gone up. I see great things for 2012.”