Much as some experts would disagree, there is a line of thought that we have seen the worst of the housing market slump.

Price drops and declining sales in the Massachusetts housing market moderated in October, two housing reports showed yesterday, suggesting that the months long slump in the real estate market may be nearing its end.

A … sales report on the Massachusetts market, released by Warren Group, a Boston real estate firm and publisher of Banker & Tradesman, found sharper price and sales declines.

Warren Group said prices for single-family homes fell 6.9 percent in October from year-ago levels, while sales dropped 14.9 percent. Condo prices were down 4.8 percent from year-ago levels, according to Warren, and sales were down 19.5 percent.

Warren Group’s data is culled from property sales filed in the state’s registries of deeds. It includes transactions the real estate association does not, such as homes sold without the aid of an agent.

That’s not to mean that prices won’t drop a bit more, especially if 1) international events upset the apple cart; 2) interest rates shoot up; and/or 3) the economy goes into a tailspin.

Helping to smooth the market is a moderating of inventory levels (are people pulling their units off the market because they can’t sell?), lower list prices by sellers (and the willingness to negotiate), and lower interest rates (and going a bit lower, I think, until January … or lower, according to some economists, in second quarter, 2007).

Source: End of housing decline near? – By Kimberly Blanton, The Boston Globe

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