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California home sales sluggish

California home sales were 19 percent lower than what's typically sold in January.

California home sales were 19 percent lower than what's typically sold in January.

In the real estate and moving industry, the month of January is notorious for being a slow sales month, and nowhere is that more apparent than in California.

According to MDA DataQuick, Southern California home sales in January sold at the slowest pace since 2008 and the second slowest since 1996.

DataQuick says less than 10,000 homes sold last month - 9,983 - which is about 19 percent lower than what's typically sold in January.

"Last month was sort of a flashback to January last year: Sales were lousy, but many investors and others looking for bargains stayed active," said John Walsh president of DataQuick. "Once again, we're seeing data that tells us as much about who's not buying as who is buying."

The data is also telling Walsh how people are buying, as the statistics indicated more people paid with cash. DataQuick reports almost 30 percent of January sales were paid in cash, which is close to breaking the all-time record.

Cash payments on homes is becoming something of a trend nationwide. According to the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors, more than half of all existing homes in Southern Nevada are cash-purchased.