SPOKANE, Wash. -

Prospective home buyers listen up! There are positive signs of an improving market, and now could be the best time to sign a new mortgage.

Mortgage rates have hit their lowest point this year, and home prices are slowly on the rise. 

The average rate for a 30-year loan dropped to 4.10% last week. That's according to Freddie Mac. Rates for 15-year loans also slipped down to 3.23%. That's the lowest level for mortgage rates this year. 

These are numbers that haven't been seen since June 2013, when rates were below 4%. 

The Federal Reserve's buyback program is partly responsible for keeping borrowing costs down. The Federal Reserve has been purchasing treasury bonds and mortgage-backed securities, providing a steady market for mortgages. 

However, the Federal Reserve is cutting back its purchases, which should eventually cause rates to climb again. 

But, for right now, things are looking good for buyers. 

Not only are mortgage rates improving, but so are home prices. And a growing housing inventory, not to mention a stronger job market, are giving buyers more options. 

More than 5 million homes were sold in July. That's the highest level in more than ten months.