Mortgage rates going up, but experts say the time to buy is now

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For many potential buyers, the numbers can be intimidating.

“So many people have lost their homes because of the high rates. Rates are going up and the economy isn’t,” said Robert Knowles of Cape Coral.

The average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage hit 4.43 percent this week, rising for the eighth week straight.

“If you go from 4.5 to 5.5 percent and you’re looking at a $250,000 house, people that make $75,000 are looking at a $150 increase in their payment,” said real estate broker Mike Lombardo.

Despite rising rates, Lombardo says the time to buy is now, especially for first time buyers or those financing.

“At the very bottom of our price range, we’re seeing a lot of competitive tension on lower priced houses, seeing multiple offers on them, and we’re seeing a lot of pressure because people want to buy a house before interest rates goes up and put any further pressure on them and their budget,” Lombardo said.

And what about those purchasing second homes in the medium to high range?

“On the alternative, people at the higher end of the market have much lower interest rates,” Lombardo said.

Despite initial reactions to run from the rates, local brokers say historically, interest rates are low right now, but won’t stay there for long.

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