TENNESSEE VALLEY (WHNT) - As we head into 2015, experts say home prices across the country are expected to increase over the next 12 months and the same holds true in the Tennessee Valley.
Sale prices in Tennessee are predicted to go up three to four percent and two to three percent in Alabama.
The area's upward trend is thanks in larger part to three key factors: strong job growth, low interest rates and low crude oil prices.
"We are going to have a stronger economic turn this next year," said Amanda Howard, CEO of Amanda Howard Real Estate.
According to the 2014 U.S. Census, Huntsville is one of the top 30 fastest growing metro cities in the country. That stat is reflected in the local job market, with companies that are either expanding or relocating to the Tennessee Valley. With more jobs, comes more people and those people need somewhere to live.
As the population continues to grow, if the inventory of homes available on the market does not, it will force sale prices up.
"Right now, we are still a buyers' market, but that could easily turn by the first quarter, if we do not see an increase of property, more properties coming on the market or our new construction being able to catch up," said Howard.
Mortgage interest rates are still low, but lenders anticipate they will slowly start creeping back into the five percent range over the next year.
Howard says the first half of 2015 will be the ideal time to buy or sell.
This past year saw nearly double-digit growth in home sale prices, but Howard says do not expect to see that this year.
"I think we will still see a nice steady incline, but it will probably be mid-singles, I would expect four to five percent growth."