A string of pain stories make up the article.

He listed the house in the summer for $305,000. Having owned real estate only during boom years, he assumed it would sell in about a week. After a month, he cut the price to $289,900. Another week went by. He offered to pay nearly $9,000 toward a buyer’s closing costs.

Then along came Johnson, a 38-year-old truck driver, who snapped up the house and boasts, “I got a great deal.”

We’re just starting to see this “I got a great deal” theme a lot in news stories. Although the overall market is down a bit, with some work you can find real bargains.

If the sellers are long time owners, they are still making out very well indeed. And, of course, with some work those sellers may be able to buy their next home for significantly less than they would have paid last year.

Nevertheless, it’s a tough time to sell.

In fact, about half of American homeowners who thought of selling their homes in the past year have delayed putting their home on the market, according to a USA TODAY-Gallup poll conducted this month.

And roughly one-third of those who had considered selling have abandoned the idea. (The poll of 1,007 adults has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.)

Choose your real estate agent wisely.