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What the Zillow announcement means

News Analysis: A new center of the transaction?

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Founded by former Microsoft executives and the co-founders of Expedia, online real estate firm Zillow is destined to shake-up the real estate world with its announcement today. will now allow homeowners and real estate agents to post homes for sale for free. Additionally, in redefining what it means for a house to be "for sale," Zillow is enabling any homeowner to post a "Make Me Move" price. Here are the reasons that we think the move by Zillow is significant: 1. Zillow is creating a new home listing service -- an alternative to the 100-year-old MLS system. It is, in effect, building its own listing database and can do more or less what it wants with the data collected. 2. Zillow is fast becoming a centralized real estate information and communication hub, the potential centerpiece for the local offline real estate conversation. 3. The Seattle-based firm is offering an amazing mix of user tools -- elegant user interface, innovative maps and new Wiki features. Zillow ...