Sales of existing homes in the 29-county North Texas region are up 16 percent so far this year compared to the same period last year. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported that real estate agents say that activity has picked up this year as first- or second-time buyers are finding low mortgage rates and plenty of available homes. The newspaper reported that the median selling price of homes is up 7 percent, making the first half of 2012 the strongest six-month period since the housing crisis.

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