Expedia Founder Launches Property Valuation Site( February 8, 2006) --
Richard Barton, the creator of online travel company Expedia, is introducing a beta version of a real estate information Web site that gives consumers free home valuations and neighborhood data.The Web site, Zillow.com, uses tax records, sales histories, and prices of comparable homes in the neighborhood to calculate a home value estimate — or “Zestimate,” as it’s referred to on the site. More than 60 million homes are currently included in the Web site’s database, but that’s just the beginning, says Barton, who sold Expedia.com in 2003 after revolutionizing the travel business. "Consumers will make better decisions and become smarter," he says. "People want to be empowered with information so they can take control of what is scary and difficult and fraught with frustrations."Seattle-based Zillow doesn’t provide sales listing information on its Web site, at least for now.
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