Thursday, July 06, 2006

Blogging has ceased while my wife and I complete the move into our new house in Nashville. I hope to pick it up again soon.

I will make the brief observation that housing markets are interesting, particularly regarding realtors. One would think that technology would have mostly eliminated the need for agents, except insofar as they are useful for negotiations. It ought to be easier for sellers to list houses and for buyers to shop for houses than it currently is. Instead, real estate agents (both for buyers and sellers) still act as important middlemen. There are even sites that facilitate lending between individuals (i.e., you loan someone $10,000 directly, with terms decided by us, and no bank as middleman/risk aggregator, which sounds like a terrible idea, but then I'm very risk averse). There are, of course, ways to look for real estate without a buyer's agent, and one can go to buyowner.com instead of hiring an agent, but most people stick with agents and their closed listing services. There must be an opportunity for some clever entrepreneur here.

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