PORTLAND -- It's a seller's market for Portland real estate.

During the height of the recession, houses could sit on the market for up to two years, but today in some pockets of town, they often sell in just weeks.

While new listings in 2012 were down just over four percent, pending sales were up 17 percent.

Because inventories are so low, it means prices are up an average of 3.9 percent, and continued confidence in the economy is helping to drive sales.

You have people feeling better about the market, feeling better about job security and homes are getting more and more affordable because of prices hitting the bottom and interest rates hitting historic low, said Nick Krautter from

Interest rates continue to be near record lows: 3.34 percent for a 30-year fixed mortgage and 2.63 percent for a 15-year fixed mortgage.

Experts, like JJ Lee Kwai with Rose City Mortgage, expect interest rates to remain low, but she thinks they will gradually creep up over the next few months.

Realtors are very busy, even this time of year, when prospective home buyers often wait until the spring to look for a home.

KGW reporter Joe Smith contributed to this report.

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