News-Leader: Record-low interest rates intrigue buyers

Springfield News-Leader reporter Wes Johnson reports in today’s edition that home buyers beginning to re-enter the local market are finding a pleasant suprise: record low interest rates. While many thought interest rates for mortgages couldn’t go any lower than record lows of recent years, even better opportunities exist today for consumers to finance their next home. HBA of Greater  Springfield members Arvest Bank, Springfield First Community Bank, and Carol Jones Realtors all are featured in the article:

Record-low interest rates intrigue buyers

Nation’s uncertain economy helps some realize American dream.

Written by
Wes Johnson


First-time homebuyers Diamond and Joe Netzer weren’t lured into home ownership by record-low interest rates.

But their decision to stop renting an apartment and buy a three-bedroom, two-bath house couldn’t have come at a better time.

“We were ready to buy, but I honestly didn’t realize interest rates were so low,” said Diamond Netzer. “We got a 30-year loan with a fixed rate of 3.5 percent.”

With guidance from their mortgage adviser, the Netzers took advantage of a Missouri Housing Development Commission program that significantly lowers the cost of acquiring a home for first-time buyers, though there are income and mortgage limits to qualify.

But even traditional homebuyers and owners looking to refinance their mortgages are benefitting from interest rates that have been propelled downward by uncertainty about the nation’s economy and the recent downgrading of America’s creditworthiness.

According to a report in USA Today, 15-year, fixed-rate mortgages averaged a record low 3.5 percent last week, with 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages averaging 4.32 percent.

“I am fielding a lot of phone calls,” said Drew Stoner, mortgage loan officer with Arvest Bank in Springfield.

“The affordability these low interest rates provide, plus the affordability of the housing market — since property values have declined — makes it a great time to consider buying a house.”