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      Money Talks: mortgage rates this year

      If there's any sign that describes recent times, it's this one.

      Of course, falling home prices were good news for buyers, as some markets offered homes for less than the price of a Mercedes.

      According to some experts, low prices might be around for a while longer.

      "We're looking for home prices to dip through the Spring but then to start moving up on a more sustained basis in the summer and fall," said David Wyss, Chief Economist of Standard & Poors.

      But what about financing that house?

      After hitting historic lows just last year, mortgage rates have inched up a little bit.

      And, it doesn't look like they're going down anytime soon.

      In fact, they could go even higher.

      As employment picks up and our economy recovers, interest rates, including mortgage rates, are likely to creep up.

      The key word there, however, was "creep."

      The economy is still sluggish, and so is the demand for mortgage money.

      So while rates may tick up a little bit this year, they'll probably stay in the five percent neighborhood.

      So is 2011 the time to buy?

      All real estate is local, so the answer depends on where you live.

      But if prices are bottoming and rates aren't going lower, the answer may be yes.

      Want to find the best rate on a mortgage?

      We've got a free rate search at