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Inman Blog Challenge: What's next for home sales?

On Tuesday, Feb. 27, the National Association of Realtors will release its existing January home sales figures. Up or down on sales? Leave your guess at the Inman News Blog here. Let's compare January 2006 to January 2007 and predict a percentage increase or decline in sales from a year ago. Some data to help your prediction: December results: Total existing-home sales -- including single-family, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops -- eased 0.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.22 million units in December from a level of 6.27 million in November. Sales were 7.9 percent lower than a 6.75 million-unit pace in December 2005. Optimistic color on market from David Lereah, NAR's chief economist, who "is looking for a steady rise in existing-home sales. ... After reaching what appears to be the bottom in the fourth quarter of 2006, we expect existing-home sales to gradually rise all this year and well into 2008." Inman Blog Challenge: Will January sales be up or down from...