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September 13, 2005


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Robert Fleckter

The LoftNija's work look great. For another site which is on the "bleeding edge," check out www.uscondex.com . Their site is clean and interesting. The Map Search and Listing engines are cool!


Carol Williams

How does the Loft Ninja keep his head from exploding with all that creativity?

Jason Graves

I look forward to hearing more about REBS.

I am glad to hear of your renewed faith in the real estate industry! You have quite a presence I'm discovering (And enjoying reading about). Like you, I'm trying to wrap my brain around the DOJ charges that have surfaced and what we need to do to ensure our clients are well cared for. I posted a note earlier on my Blog and I'd like your opinion. http://jasonbgraves.blogspot.com/

Thanks and I look forward to further exploring your blog!

Realty Freak

To answer your question of what has the "drawers of the DOJ in such a knot", I hope you have read the actual DOJ complaint and not just the press and trade journal rhetoric.

What I think most people miss is this. By removing listings from other brokers websites, big brokers are really only effecting those brokers who obtain the majority of their business from operating a VOW website. These VOW companies offer an alternative type of service for the consumer, one that is often less expensive and is very threatening to the status quo.

Some facts. The chairman of the board of RE/MAX, the nation's second-largest real estate franchisor, publicly expressed his concern that these Internet sites would inevitably place downward pressure on brokers' commission rates. One broker complained that because of the lower cost structure of brokers who provide listings to their customers over the Internet, "they are able to kick-back 1% of the sales price to the buyer." And Cendant, the nation's largest real estate franchisor and owner of the nation's largest real estate brokerage, asserted in a widely circulated white paper that it was "not feasible" for even the largest traditional brokers to compete with large Internet companies that operated or affiliated with brokers operating VOWs.

If a MLS member broker decides not to enter a listing into the MLS so no other member can effectively inform consumers of that listing in person, by telephone or by VOW website ,then that's OK, it effects everyone equally. By "opting out" listings only from the Internet, a broker is only effecting those brokers who predominatelyt use the Internet to conduct business. And that is against the law.

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Frances Flynn Thorsen

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