Everything you might want to know about OC tearing up its venerable 714 area code gets a going-over in this OC Register blog started earlier this month. It's hard to imagine now, but Register columnist Jon Lansner points out that until 1951 Orange County fell into the 213 area (as did most of Socal). The 714 code stayed in place for 30-some-odd years, before San Diego and the Inland Empire broke away in the 80s and 90s. Splitsville 714 (ocregister.com/714) provides news and comment about the proposed addition of a 657 area code. Speaking of Lansner, he reports on his real estate blog that in 2006 Socal's housing costs - that is, the cost of actually living in a home - grew at the fastest annual pace in 25 years. Higher rents, electric bills and home furnishing expenses were the culprits. Electricity costs alone soared 34 percent. He's at ocregister.com/lansner.
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