Rockford Area Realtors President Steve Bois says "housing plays a big role in the GDP of the country and to have that recovery is very critical to the employment numbers."
Including new buyers like Janelle Widergren.
Widergren explains "I do electrical, plumbing, painting we do everything."
Instead of investing in stocks she put some of her savings into buying and repairing a rental property.
"We did a lot of remodeling and cleaning up and painting a lot of different, new windows, its something I wanted to make sure it was a nice home for a family."
The work paid off.
Widergren says "It took us seven weeks to flip the house. We had a renter and they moved in September first."
Record low interest rates are one factor fueling the home buying boom.
"This is perhaps the largest investment a person will make is to buy a home and now's a good time to do that. And we're seeing more confidence and that'll bring out more buyers," said Bois.
Industries related to the housing market will also see a boost. For investors looking to get into the housing recovery Janelle shares some helpful advice.
"Working with a good realtor, knowing and doing a lot of research and location. We just. I mean I found this home and I just knew it was right," explains Widergren.
Average home sale prices were about the same as a year ago according to the report.