The issue, at least in my neck of the woods, is few buyers and the ones that are looking are indecisive and taking their time. There is not a steady stream of qualified buyers who are snatching houses up at a rate quick enough to put food on many agents' tables.
Still, even with fewer agents than there were in the crazy inflating bubble days, there's too many.
Also, recrutiers at local firms that I know claim that the real estate class provider's classrooms haven't been full lately.
I have heard of quite a number of agents that have filed bankruptcy; sold their homes; downsized; rented out their homes and some that even lost their homes. I myself had a double whammy when my husband's hours were cut by two thirds. Thank God we have been in our home for 25 years and had enough equity to refinance!
On a lighter note, I am seeing an upswing here in Wisconsin and I am looking forward to a prosperous New Year!
Working much harder for much less, but STILL WORKING!
Thank you for posting your question.
I have to admit that I am not too familiar with California's real estate markets.
Here in Middlesex County, NJ we have seen a drastic decrease in buying interest and sales. To give you an idea, the number of homes sold in November was almost 50% less than the number of homes sold same month (November) last year. This decrease started in July after the expiration of the tax credit.
From a price perspective, we are down about 10% versus last month and down about 5% versus November 2009.
From my personal experience, yes there are always new agents entering the business but many more who are still leaving or looking for additional jobs/income...