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Democratization of Multiple Listings

March 06, 1994

"Hands-On House Hunting" (Jan. 23) pointed out some features of computerized MLS listings. What would be intriguing, however, would be to incorporate that service into a bigger computer network--Internet. Rather than driving to my realtor's office, why can't I look properties over on my computer at home, at a time convenient to me? Why can't we democratize the MLS guide so we don't have to rely on what realtors think is best for us?

Also, the criteria used in selecting a home through a new computer service could be expanded to included such issues as:

Has the house been bolted to its foundation, and have the proper permits been pulled? In other words, were the sellers wise enough to spend money where it counts, on the structure, rather than on cozy vanilla smells and gallons of paint?

What are the walls and roof made of?

Is the attic insulated? (lower energy bills)

Is wiring, plumbing, heating up to code?

Are any recent additions or remodels properly inspected and permitted, so new owners won't have a problem in selling the property in the future?

How could zoning affect any future plans to the property?

Opening up choice to the time-strapped consumer is the future. So is building homes more attuned to structural robustness rather than curb appeal, which has no value in an earthquake.



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