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High interest rates not stopping home buyers in Pierce County

Real estate professionals say although interest rates are higher than the last couple of years, they're more in line with how the market naturally moves.

PIERCE COUNTY, Wash. — Although interest rates are high, that's not stopping homebuyers in Pierce County. 

Victor Bustos spent his Sunday looking for a potential new home with his daughters.

This is his third time buying a home in Pierce County, but Bustos says this time around, he jumped into the market at an interesting time for interest rates.

"We applied for our loan at the beginning of February when it was 5.99%, but after that weekend, we were back in the sevens, so it's a little like we either take the jump or we don't," Bustos said.

Bustos also said he's seen seven homes so far. According to Regina Madiera-Gordon with RM Home Specialists, that isn't surprising.

"We just saw a surge of inventory, really starting since last August," Madiera-Gordon said. "Just so much inventory, and that's when the interest rates started to go really high, and so the demand really fell off."

But real estate agent Destiny Daranykore with Windermere Abode Lakewood says high-interest rates don't seem to be discouraging buyers as much as they used to.

Yesterday, she says she hosted an open house with about ten families in attendance.

"The trends that I'm noticing is people are out, they're still shopping, and despite what the rates are right now, they're kind of adjusting to the homes at lower price points to adjust to the rates," Daranykore said.

Madiera-Gordon adds that the lower interest rates over the last couple of years were artificially low, and what's happening now is more in line with how the market naturally moves.

"People who had the chance to capitalize on that can consider themselves lucky, because where we are now is really more of a normal real estate market as far as interest rates over time, and so I think what's happening now is people are really settling into this is the new norm," Madiera-Gordon said.

Meanwhile, Bustos says he can understand how new homebuyers might be hesitant to jump into the market right now but says it's worth the risk.

"It's a big purchase, it's a lot of money, there's risks with everything, but with big risks comes great rewards sometimes, so that's kinda the way I look at it and things happen for a reason," Bustos said.

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