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Next big thing in real estate technology

Consumers expect information, tech savvy, panelists say

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SAN FRANCISCO - Technology has inexorably changed the real estate industry and its business models, a panel of industry professionals said Friday at the National Association of Realtors annual convention. "Title insurance companies have become technology companies," said Travis Wright, CEO of Stewart Realty Solutions, a software shop that is a subsidiary of Stewart Title. According to Wright, the mass of paperwork involved in title insurance was "out of control," the transaction process was chaotic, and the title process was tedious, time-consuming and all-around "too manual." "So we built technology to automate the process," said Wright, whose company licenses its SureClose online real estate transaction management system for title agencies, Realtors and lenders. With SureClose, home buyers and sellers, agents and others involved in real estate transactions can work on and share documents and communicate on a passworded Web site. "Our platform is AIM. That is the production side; we p...