Home sales in South Carolina fell for the fourth straight month in September, while price growth slowed to a modest pace, according to statistics provided by the South Carolina Association of Realtors.

Realtors recorded 5,720 sales in September, down 12.5 percent from 6,539 sales in September 2005. Year to date, a total of 53,662 homes have been sold, off 3.6 percent from the 55,668 sales recorded through the same period last year.

Among the areas reporting the largest declines in sales from a year ago were: Beaufort, down 35 percent; the Piedmont area, down 34.5 percent; Greenwood, down 32.1 percent; and Coastal Carolinas (Myrtle Beach, N. Myrtle Beach, Conway and Georgetown), down 31.7 percent.

The overall median price for single-family, condo and villa homes in September was $161,600, down from $164,300 in August, but up 2 percent from $158,300 a year ago.

Despite the more moderate growth statewide, median prices in three regions — Coastal Carolinas, Piedmont and Southern Midlands — posted double-digit appreciation between September 2005 and September 2006, SCAR reported. Coastal Carolinas prices were up 24.7 percent to $212,000; Piedmont prices gained 32.9 percent to $190,000; and Southern Midlands prices jumped 63.9 percent to $136,000.

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