Low mortgage rates keep home sales across the U.S. high, benefiting in turn home improvement and technology stores as homeowners invest in their homes for the future.

However, high demand and low mortgage rates also contribute to exorbitant prices in hot urban markets, like California’s major cities. California home sales are already slowing as a result, although prices remain high for the time being.

Such high prices prevent first-time homebuyers from entering the housing market — and make sellers wary of their ability to find a replacement home with an impending rise in interest rates anticipated for 2017.

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