NORTH ADAMS -- A local real-estate company celebrated 15 years this month, and reportedly enters the latter half of its teenage years in good health.
In a recent interview with the Transcript, Jennifer Segala, owner of Steepleview Realty with her husband, Paul, said the business has closed 23 sales with another 40 pending so far in 2013.
Representing $6.5 million, these sales put Steepleview on pace to crack 2012's total of $17 million.
"Last year was our best year and we're starting out phenomenal in 2013," Segala said. " ... We're seeing renewed confidence [in the market]."
Segala pointed to recent upticks in the interest rate -- long frozen at a low level that was almost without precedent -- and values, and more homes selling at their listed prices as indicators of local market continuing to gain strength.
Last year, according to Berkshire County Board of Realtors (BCBR), Northern Berkshire sales increased by 36 percent and hit their highest levels since 2007.
The business began operating in April, 1998 from 1 Commercial St., in Adams, the present location of Berkshire Arts and Technology Charter Public School.
"It's been a wonderful, wonderful 15 years," Segala said.
Total sales over the run top "several hundred million," Segala said.
The single priciest sale Steepleview made over the years was the United Cerebral Palsy Association of Berkshire County building, at 535 Curran Highway in North Adams, at roughly $650,000 in 2012.
Segala said the business began with roughly four employees.
It's since grown to include 15 associates plus Segala and her husband and three offices, located at 63 Park St. in Adams, 85 Main St. in North Adams and, the latest, added two years ago, 63 Spring St. in Williamstown.
Segala said single-bedroom homes in North Adams, Adams and Cheshire are popular of late.
"You're starting to see more young people coming in," she said.
Barring unforeseen circumstances, Segala said there's ample reason for optimism in the coming years in the Northern Berkshire market.
BCBR reported gains in housing prices in 2012 not scene since 2005.
Segala said some commemoration of the anniversary is planned for this summer but nothing is finalized yet.
To reach Phil Demers,