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DES MOINES, Iowa — Des Moines continues to prove itself as a wonderful place to live. As a result, the metro has become a booming real estate market.

“We see homes selling in a record amount of time, 24 hours on the market, some selling for over ask price,” said Amanda Nagle, a Century 21 realtor.

Nagle said the Des Moines metro real estate market is on fire right now and anyone not ready for it will get left behind in this fast-moving market.

“If your buyers aren’t prequalified and ready to move, they’re going to miss out on an opportunity,” she said.

Homes priced in the low $100,000 range all the way up to the $600,000 range are going in a quicker amount of time than usual, Nagle said.

According to the Des Moines Area Association of Realtors, there were 939 homes sold in March, and pending sales were up 20 percent over the previous month. The median sale price was also up over last year. Data over the past few months shows the housing market continuing to rise.

“April is a big time for us, but we saw this part of the market show up much earlier than expected this year. Usually, now is the time that we’re really picking up. We were all busy in January,” Nagle said.

Why is the real estate market booming in the Des Moines metro?

“I think people are catching on. Nationwide, Wells Fargo, Wellmark, Blue Cross Blue Shield, all these employers are bringing people in. We’re seeing a big influx in that regard and people stay,” Nagle said.

There are also a lot of move-up buyers.

“It’s a great time if you’re in that $200,000 price range to move up, get a little bit bigger home. Interest rates are still really low compared to historic figures,” Nagle said.

The only challenge with such a booming market is that inventory is still really low, and it’s not able to keep up with demand. According to the latest figures, there were fewer than 3,000 properties on the market in the metro area.

For more statistics on the Des Moines area housing market, click here.