CONSUMER WATCH -- Getting a mortgage isn't as easy as it was a year or two ago. It may be one reason why the housing market seems to be flooded with inventory these days. If you're thinking about buying a new home sometime soon good deals are getting easier to find. The housing market continues its slide, meaning good news for buyers. If you've seen carpenters out putting up new houses in your neighborhood don't assume the houses they're working on have already been sold. A new report shows that sales of new houses fell unexpectedly during February -- down almost four per cent from January's pace. Experts had been expecting a slight increase in sales last month. January saw the biggest one-month sales decline in more than 13 years. The continuing slide in the new homes market reverberated on Wall Street. The Dow dropped by double-digits after the report was released. New homes represent just 11 percent of the total housing market. Most homes sold in the US are pre-owned. When both new and existing home sales were tallied, February saw a slight increase in overall sales, but prices fell. Housing market analysts say that the recent troubles in the sub-prime mortgage market will most likely make 2007 a tough year for people who want to sell a home.
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