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If you're selling your home this year, be prepared for a marathon, not a sprint.
In most places, those heady days of putting a property on the market, receiving multiple bids, getting more than you expected, and accepting an offer in just days or weeks are over.
Now, for most houses in most parts of the country, it's a buyer's market. That means that more houses are for sale, there are longer stretches on the market, and prices have slowed, plateaued or, in some places, decreased.
Sellers "need to be prepared for a sustained effort," says Colby Sambrotto, chief operating officer of
Homes are staying on the market for about four months, according to the most recent averages from the National Association of Realtors.
If you plan to plant your "for sale" sign, here are 10 things you can do beforehand:
1. Recognize every market is different. Your state, town or neighborhood could dovetail with national numbers or buck the trend entirely. "There really is no national market," says Sambrotto. "There's a patchwork of regional markets." Never rely solely on one person's advice or opinion. Talk to a handful of professionals, do your own research and listen to your gut instinct.
2. Get your home inspected. ... more

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