For months we have heard the real estate market is at a stand still, with very few homes selling or new homes being built. But this summer in South Georgia real estate agents say sales have really picked up. People are taking advantage of the $9,800 tax credit program for first time buyers, and that has a ripple up effect in the market.
Jud and Jenny Savelle have just moved into their new home in Lee County. Despite the bad economy, their old home in Atlanta sold in one week, enabling them to make the move and buy this home.
"We were very fortunate." Judd Savelle said "The market was not as bad as we thought when we put our home up for sale. And it sold very quickly."
Just around the corner Rod Mabrey is building his dream home, because his old home sold quickly to a first time buyer family that will receive the $8,000 federal and $1,800 state stimulus tax credit.
"I was shocked. I just put it on the market to see what it was going to do. The next thing I knew we had two people interested, and one just jumped right on it. It benefited them as well as me," Rod Mabrey said
Real estate agent Patsy Martin sold 13 homes in June. "I had more closings in June than in any single month in my seven year career in real estate. So I think that's a good indicator that things are moving positively."
Martin says the stimulus plan is working in South Georgia. First time home owners are buying, and allowing those home owners to move up now that they have sold their first homes.
"The stimulus is working. Rates are down, building props are down. Now is the time to buy," Mabrey said.
"They've broken ground on several new sites out here just within the last month or two, so that gives us hope we have made a good investment out there," Savelle said.
And that is good news for the economy, as home builders put people back to work, and young couples are moving into their dream homes with confidence for the future.
Real estate agents say the first time home buyer has been the key to this market rally in South Georgia, starting the ripple effect. But people are having to move quickly to take advantage of these tax credits, because you have to close your sale by December First to qualify, and buyers have to move now.
Realtors say some banks and lenders are working with first time home buyers to let them use their tax credit in advance while working out their home loans.
You can check on homes for sale in South Georgia on our website, walb.com. Click on Classifieds, and WALB-HOMES.