Home sales in Southern California fell for the fifth consecutive month in April, decelerating to their slowest pace since 2001, while home-price growth returned to a more normal clip, a real estate information service reported today. A total of 24,748 new and resale homes sold in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange counties in April, down 16.1 percent from 29,509 in March and down 21.3 percent from 31,431 in April last year. The year-over-year sales decline was the steepest since April 1995, when home purchases slowed 24 percent. Last month's sales count was the lowest for any April since 24,120 homes were sold in April 2001. DataQuick's statistics, which go back to 1988, show an average April for the nineteen years saw 23,660 sales. "March and April have shown us that the boom phase of this cycle is behind us, so now it's just a question of how the cycle ends. Right now it looks like changes in the real estate market are happening gradually. But the...
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