CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Real estate experts say the federal government is providing several opportunities to help certain parts of the housing market.
For qualified buyers, there are a number of government programs to help finance their purchases.
Whitney Long, a loan originator with Carolina Home Mortgage in Chapel Hill, N.C., says although private bank loans have been harder to secure, loans from the Federal Housing Administration or through the VA or USDA can provide help for those looking to finance most or all of their costs. She said that especially applies to those who use the first-time homebuyer's credit.
"We're starting to see a lot more people get pre-qualified, think about buying now that the credit has come out with the $8,000 for new home buyers," Longs said. "So, it's certainly a big incentive for people to think about it."
She said she's doing about 50 percent more government loans than before.
Even though experts are not sure when the slump will end, they know the numbers will eventually start heading the other way.
"If you look at all the things that have historically gone well for our market, in terms of the universities, the demographics, the educational level, the income and earning level of the people that live here, those are the types of markets that come out of recessions quicker," Stacey Anfindsen, a real estate market analyst, said.
The housing market in the region is doing better than the rest of the nation and although they're slower than before, statistics show there is activity in the real estate market.
But Nick Tennyson, executive director of the Durham, Orange and Chatham Home Builder's Association, knows people are being cautious.
"I don't think any of us should kid ourselves about the fact that there are people who have lost their jobs in our market and people who are afraid about that," Tennyson said. "I think that's really just stopped a lot of people from considering any sort of purchase."