Real estate sales for 2010 instead of 1980

Two years ago I started a post about the need for better ways of selling real estate. We were fresh off the real estate search. Having had several bad experiences trying to talk us into sub-prime mortgages and houses we couldn't afford I thought it was time for a change. Now two years later everything has changed and yet nothing has changed. Here's what I wrote at that time:

We've recently been on the real estate roller-coaster. Having had a "prime" loan and house for several years through the growth of the market we're cashing out at a decent time. The challenges of buying, however, are making me think a lot about the need for real reform in the way we buy and sell real estate. It isn't even so much the buying and selling exactly, though that needs help too, but it is the process of finding a place that really stinks.

To begin with too many realtors are really nice people who are stuck in the 1980's. They understand that computers can do some things like word processing and are great for accessing the multiple listing service (MLS). But they don't yet know how their customers use technology. This leads to a great deal of frustration. I'm about to spend between a quarter- and a half- million dollars on something that I'm going to pay for over several years but the sales people don't know what I want.

There are many car-buying services that would be a good place to start.

With a little free time in the coming year I'll expand on this with some ideas about what we could do. Maybe by the end of this year the people's listing service will be in place. Imagine the ability to easily buy and sell real-estate. We might even manage to avoid repeating the bubble with people making informed choices based on good information.