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Showing posts from February 22, 2008

Location, Location, Location (Privacy, Privacy, Privacy)

This one comes to me from a fairly irate client; upset for reasons that should be quite obvious once you take a look at BlockShopper.com.

The folks here claim to be providing a service to the community by capturing and reporting public information relating to recent property transactions in the target communities. For Chicago, currently limited to Lakeview and Lincoln Park. Rather than simply report the property addresses and prices, these clever web-mongers are also posting google maps of the specific properties and biographical information about buyers, as available from other public web sites.

I suppose this is a benefit to home buyers to see the prices and "types" of people buying on a given street or what-have-you, and in a folksy pseudo-small townish way it could be a nice thing to learn something about your new neighbors, but at what cost?

Seems to me that the real small townish way to learn about the neighbors would be to bake an apple pie and ring the damn doorbell to…

An End to Real Estate Agent Rebates?

The Spring legislative season has started in Springfield so our legislators are hard at work introducing laws we need (whether we need them or not).

Chicago lawmaker Robert Molaro has introduced a proposal to amend to the Illinois Real Estate License Act. HB 4313 provides that no licensee shall give or pay cash rebates, cash gifts, or cash prizes to an unlicensed person who is a party to a contract to buy or sell real estate.

Bad news for discount brokers and other innovators; probably good news for anyone who wants to maintain the status quo and prevent brokerage commission slippage. Companies like Redfin, who appear poised to enter the Chicago market may have to rethink their buisness plans.

For some reason, licensees could still offer prizes, merchandise, rebates, discounts, or other consideration for rental situations.

This bill

The Bowling Center Safety Act

No real estate news here - but I just can't help myself:

Its the start of the spring legislative session down in Springfield so our lawmakers are hard at work proposing new laws for all of us.

LaSalle County Democrat Frank Mautino has introduced House Bill 4332, the Bowling Center Safety Act to immunize bowling centers for any injuries to bowlers and spectators from the assumed risks of bowling unless the operator has violated duties required under the Act.

I for one will sleep better at night once this bill passes.