Real estate activity in the Paris area has picked up steam after a slow start at the beginning of the year, according to Suzanne Nickerson, owner of Paris Realty said last week.

Also, activity in the home loan market has proven to be steady this year, according to Jarrod Yarnell, president and CEO of First National Bank at Paris, the largest financial institution in Paris.

“Last December through the first of February was the slowest its been since I took over in 2014,” Nickerson said. “That’s normally a slow time of year but it was something we’d not seen. It got pretty slim.

“But, we’re busy again,” she said. “We’ve closed a lot of sales.”

Nickerson said sales activity is looking similar to 2016.

“We’ve closed seven properties in June and July,” she said. “That’s pretty good. We’ve closed 25 properties so far this year. In 2016, by the end of July we had closed 29 properties, but then we didn’t see that winter slow season last year. That’s the difference. We have plenty of listings and there are plenty of buyers. Interest rates are still relatively low so the market is good.”

The process of closing a sale, which was taking about 90 days last year, has shortened, Nickerson said.

“Closings used to take up to 90 days and now, from the time we make an offer you can be in the house in 45 days,” she said.

She also said that homes in the $100,000 to $140,000 price range represent the average of what’s selling locally.

“Anything much over $140,000 and it gets a little harder to sell,” she said.

Yarnell said home loan activity is better than it’s been in a while.

“We saw an uptick start to take place last fall,” he said. “That’s carried through to now.”

Yarnell said home construction loans remain steady.

“We haven’t see a big uptick in those but there is still some activity in the market,” Yarnell said.

One area that has seen a slow down, according to Yarnell, is home refinancing loans.

“There’s a little of that going on, but it’s slowed down,” he said. “Rates have gone up and people who want to refinance have all ready done so.”