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Is it the right time to buy or sell a house?

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To buy or not to buy! That is not just a question, it could be the difference between making a great investment, or making a great big mistake.

Had you bought a house during the boom before 2008, home prices were still soaring. Then, they came crashing down. Now, after several years, home values have finally started to go back up, although they are nowhere near the record high prices.

“We are doing our home inspection on this house in central Indiana now because our offer has already been accepted,” said Carlee Bounds.

Carlee and Ben Bounds got married. They’re getting their home inspected now that Carlee was able to sell her condominium thanks to realtor Brett Young with RE/MAX Legends Group.

“It's a good time for sellers because inventory is low, and that helps home appreciation. The higher demand means more people want your house,” said Young.

That home appreciation helps sellers. So, now is a great time to stretch your original dollar by selling, if you’re considering it. You could make a nice profit with demand going up and up. Experts say a homeowner normally has to live in a house at least a few years to turn a profit, but not right now.

"Yeah, I bought a condo and sold it 10 months later. It went really well. It sold within about a week. And it's been a pretty easy smooth ride,” said Carlee.

Carlee made a $10,000 profit in less than a year. But what hasn't been easy lately is buying a house before someone else beats you to it!

“Today, the buyer really doesn't have much control at all. As a couple we’ve learned you say to yourself, this is the house I think I want, I hope I want, so I gotta put in an offer now before it sells,” said Ben.

He's not kidding. He and Carlee are currently in the final process of buying a new house. On two separate occasions, they liked a house and waited two days. In that time, it was too late--the houses were already sold.

Ben and Carlee discovered there were always multiple offers, but they found a current house where the offer was accepted and now they’re just waiting for appraisal and then closing in the first week of December.

Aside from having to cope with multiple buyers, there is some good news for those looking to purchase a home now. Rates are still low, around 4% or maybe less if you go with a shorter loan. But right now it's a seller's market, even though spring is typically the time to sell.

“Homeowners can still sell even though we are going into the winter season which is obviously the slow season. If they need to sell, the buyers are still out there for it. They just have to get their home prepared correctly, get it priced correctly and they'll be fine,” said Young.

So sell now, if you want to get the most bang for your buck. And if you can find something you like, buy now without hesitation, as rates are still low, but might not be for long.