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  • Josemy Costa

Interest rates in Orlando highest in 20 years


ORLANDO, Fla. — For months, Orlando’s housing market has been red hot, with homes not staying on the market for long.


Now in the last few months real estate agents have seen a seismic shift, with interest rates at their highest levels in 20 years.


Andrew Koberlein is no stranger to home buying.

As an investor, he’s gone through the process dozens of times, but recently he’s had to put much of his business on hold.


“I’ve stopped doing all buying or selling at this moment because I’m waiting for the market to do its transition,” Koberlein said.


In October 2021, interest rates for mortgage payments were just over 3% — now rates are close to 7%.


He said that is driving many people away.


“Interest rates are a real factor,” Koberlein said.


Real estate agents like Ray Lopez said they noticed the shift in the market back in May.


“As realtors, we started getting calls from builders saying ‘hey, we have inventory again’. It no longer put your name on a list and we were ‘call you next year’” Lopez said.


He said low-interest rates during the pandemic encouraged buying and now he sees the higher interest rates as the market correcting itself after COVID-19.


“So people right now are fearing the market and if we were to rewind this back to 2015-16-17-18, what I would say is, if you look at the numbers they are very similar,” he said.


Lopez said the number of people buying homes in 2022 is actually around the same as in 2019.


“When we look at 2020 because of COVID and look at 2021 because of COVID. The numbers are so skewed,” he said.


In the meantime, the Federal Reserve is considering changing its strategy after repeatedly hiking interest rates by 0.75% in 2022.


The Fed now says it may go with a slower pace of increases to keep the country from falling into a recession.


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