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Monthly housing report: Year end home prices bump up

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Prices for residential property in the Twin Cities area rose 10.5 percent in November over the same month last year, MPR News reports, citing the influential S&P Case-Schiller Home Price Index.

The Star Tribune explained that on on a month-to-month basis, home prices in the metro area were flat, but they experienced the jump when compared to the same time period in 2012.

The Associated Press had the national housing picture, reporting that U.S. home prices fell slightly in November, ending nine straight months of price gains. The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price index slipped 0.1 percent from October to November. The index is not adjusted for seasonal variations, so the decline reflects slower buying patterns traditional in late fall. In the 20 cities tracked in the index, only Detroit prices remain below their 2000 level.

Sales for all of 2013 totaled 5.09 million, the best performance since 2006.

FOX 9, noting that the spring market in Minnesota begins in earnest in February, had a tip-filled story for both buyers and sellers to help them prepare to make a profitable transaction.

Recommendations for buyers include gathering financial records ready to present to a loan officer, including bank statements, tax returns, W-2s, investment accounts and other assets. For sellers, a pre-inspection is suggested. "For less than $500, you'll know in advance if there are any expensive repairs that could stop a transaction," the story advises. Sellers are also urged to spiff up their online presentation. "Your home's first showing is when a buyer looks at it online, not in person. Professional photos do make the difference."

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