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Media caught in real estate bubble fray

Part 4: Bubble babble: Who's got it right?

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Editor's note: The housing bubble debate has grown louder in recent weeks. Rather than add to the mix of confusing stories that attempt to decide who's right and who's wrong, this four-part series takes a closer look at the numbers, what's happening in specific markets and how the media is relaying the message. (See Part 1: Making sense of a changing housing market, Part 2: No agreement on real estate market and Part 3: Some real estate markets are cooling.) In March 1991, the Los Angeles Times ran a story called, "The Big Chill," which described the turning real estate market in Southern California. After it ran, "Realtors were pissed off," said writer David Myers, who penned the controversial story. Despite the angst from the industry, Myers' analysis proved to be right on the mark as the Los Angeles real estate market crashed. The median home price in Los Angeles County fell 22.2 percent from June of 1991 to January of 1996, the bottom of the market. Today, similar headlines are p...