(WKBN) — Would-be home sellers are now feeling stuck because of the ultra-low interest rate they snagged during the pandemic. That’s according to a report published by the University of Pennsylvania.

Those buyers are in what is called a “mortgage lock-in.” It’s not an issue unless you want to relocate, buy up or just sell your home for any reason and move into something else. That leads to a scenario where you would have to earn more or buy down to afford a new home. It’s giving homeowners a reason to stay put and impacting overall inventory, which is already low.

Mortgage rates have, in some cases, tripled since the pandemic. Right now the average rate for a 30-year mortgage is about 7.03%. The refinance rate is 7.07%.

The real estate market has softened, mostly, across the U.S. but prices are still high.

According to Realtor.com, mortgage rates have made for a lackluster spring sales season in many areas, but others are seeing more buyers searching for “affordable” homes.

The national average price for a house is $430,000, but in the Midwest, it’s $310,000.

Right now, Ohio, Wisconsin and Indiana are on the list of places that received an average of 2.5 times more views on homes than usual and spent fewer weeks on the market. It’s all about that affordability factor, and the Midwest meets the mark.

Buyers are moving inland, according to Realtor.com, hoping that lower home prices will help elevate a hefty mortgage payment at today’s interest rates.

The average price of a home in Columbiana, Trumbull and Mahoning counties is about $138,000, according to Zillow. The price is higher by zip code.