Is housing bottom near?

Near, definitely, but perhaps not quite here. This is only a nugget, mind you, but mid-May to mid-June home sales in OC were down just 4.2 percent from a year earlier. So what's the big deal? Well, considering that monthly home sales have been dropping by massive amounts from year-earlier periods - 20 percent or more - a single-digit drop is looking good. I have not seen the comparative L.A. County numbers from Dataquick, but the trend lines for the two counties are usually similar. As the OC Register's Jon Lansner points out, price cuts are behind the improving sales picture, especially the further east you go. The median price for single-family houses is down $197,500 from June 2007ís peak of $734,000. The full-month June numbers will be out in another week or so. Of course, the big question is not whether the market has finally hit bottom - it pretty much has - but how long it will take to start moving back up.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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