Posts tagged ‘Arizona Bans Giveaways’

No Free Stuff For Our Consumers!

Arizona is taking another typical step to protect incumbent businesses against new competitors:

"Arizona regulators have ordered a Seattle-based online home price estimator to stop doing business in the state."
has won wide popularity by applying algorithms to publicly available
data to come with rough estimates of the value of existing homes, which
it makes available for free through its site. The Arizona Board of
Appraisal says that Zillow should not be dispensing such information
without an appraiser's license.

Gee, we'd hate to give people the impression that a whole profession could be replaced by a few computer algorithms and some data base lookups.   I am not sure why, historically, but state governments have an incredible propensity to protect everyone in the real estate field from competition.  For years they have enforced licensing on real estate agents to help support that cartel that the Internet is only just now starting to break up.

By the way, here is another way you could write the headline for this news:  "Arizona Bans Giveaways.  Consumers Must Pay for Everything."  Oh, and my neighbor just sold his house.  The final price he got was within 4% of the Zillow estimate.  I will say that from the houses I am familiar with, they do a pretty good job (though I am sure they make mistakes, for example in neighborhoods with a lot of gentrification and a mix of old and new homes).