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Signs of hope?

Slowing decline

In August, for the first time in almost two years, Columbia and the state posted only single-digit declines in the number of homes sold.

Coastal sales increase

Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head actually saw double-digit increases in sales. The bad news? Owners were selling their homes at lower prices. Beaufort and Charleston, however, still were seeing double-digit declines in sales.

Threat to recovery?

Buyers took advantage of the $8,000 first-time home buyers tax credit last month, boosting sales statewide. But some industry leaders fear sales could be headed for a drop if the tax credit ends Nov. 30, as scheduled.