I would have posted this story when it initially ran, however, the newspaper chose to not post it on their website.
Home price slump won't stunt Kern
California house prices are expected to decline next year, though a state economist says Kern County's market should fare better than some metro areas.
Robert Kleinhenz, the association's deputy chief economist, said he expects Bakersfield's median house price to remain flat or possibly increase slightly next year.
The area has strong job and population growth, Kleinhenz said, and "that's going to support a market that's a little bit more buoyant."
The median sales price for an existing Bakersfield house was $292,000 in the third quarter of 2006, down 1.2 percent from the same period a year ago, according to a report by local appraiser Gary Crabtree.
Sales of existing homes from July through September were down 25 percent from a year ago, according to Crabtree's study.
Some 741 Kern homeowners received notices of default during that same time, up 105.3 percent from the year before.
"The drop-off in sales in Bakersfield is not quite as severe," Kleinhenz said. "It's actually faring much better than many other central areas."
Local real estate agencies are starting to get more phone calls and hold more open houses.
Activity is increasing, but it hasn't had a dramatic impact on sales yet, local agent Nancy Harper said.