The greater Baton Rouge, Louisiana market posted a 3% gain for the first quarter of 2008!! This news may be suprising to some, but to many Realtors working in this market, it was business as normal. Baton Rouge has historically seen a steady growth, nothing off the charts except for the boost we got due to hurricane Katrina, and this year is no different. In fact, Baton Rouge was recently noted to be one of the top 10 cities expected to see an increase in real estate values this year.
While a large part of the country is experiencing a huge correction our area continues to move forward. Part of this is due to our strong economy. The area has plenty of job opportunities, we have companies moving to Baton Rouge and surrounding areas, and we have less than 1% of home in foreclosure.
Another huge factor helping our market is the abundance of money available for home loans! We can still find 100% financing for our clients who have a credit score of 620, AND FHA loans have become the norm - much like they were 20 years ago! FHA loans have become popular again because the credit score only needs to be 580 to qualify, and piggy backed with a Bond Loan, many potential home buyers can buy with virtually "no money down"! Of course, we encourage buyers to have savings for a rainy day, even if they don't want to use their savings in the home purchase!
We hope to see this steady market continue throughout rest of 2008!