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You can’t help but notice the tension in the air when San Diegans talk about real estate. I recently overheard a woman saying that it’s still a great time to be a buyer, just not a great time to be a seller and I could feel my own temperature rising.

“There’s still a lot of great programs for buyers,” she said. I can only imagine that she referred to the ongoing availability of exotic mortgages. But perhaps she meant low mortgage rates, which fell for the fifth straight week this week according to Freddie Mac.

Hurrah! How much will that three bedroom, $650,000 home cost me if I’m only paying 6.17 percent?

It’s impossible to discuss real estate without sarcasm.

Every time the topic comes up on this and other blogs, people get into nasty fights where they insult one another with arrogant lectures on economics and the free market.

But the only reason it’s a bad time to be a seller is because it’s not a great time to be a buyer. Homes are overpriced and that’s bad for everyone. A myth persists that times can only be bad for buyers or sellers, but not both.

I wanted to say all this to the woman I overheard, but I kept my mouth shut just like I do whenever a Realtor tells me the same thing. Or that prices are high because this is San Diego. I want to know what they’re smoking and I can’t ask because it’ll just end in a fight.

HGTV is picking up on the tension caused by tough real estate markets with a new show called “Bought and Sold.”

It starts airing April 29 and promises to give a behind the scenes look at the businesses of Realtors in the tight housing market of Northern New Jersey and the “reality of real estate.”

The show’s promoters tell us what it’s about:

What’s your seller’s real estate agent really thinking behind that smile? Wish you could climb into the head of the buyer’s agent to find out what’s going on with the contract? It’s an inner circle with its own secrets. Competitive, calculating and colorful … meet the brilliant real estate brokers at the center of this entertaining and informative new HGTV series, all about buying and selling residential property.

Bought & Sold is the reality of real estate, focusing on the stories and high drama behind the sales and the lengths brokers will go to just to do the deal.

CATHERINE MacRAE HOCKMUTH

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