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Social networking sites spin real estate Webs

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Hanafi Libman, an associate broker with Coldwell Banker Bain in Seattle, stumbled across social networking Web sites like most people do–through someone he knew who was already involved in one. After mulling around on Tribe.net, a networking Web site where users mix business and fun, he joined a discussion group for real estate referrals and ended up creating his own group, or "tribe," for Seattle real estate. Tribe.net hasn't resulted in any business referrals for Libman. At least not yet. But he believes it could mirror real-life situations in which agents often obtain business through casual conversations. "It's the way of real estate. You walk into a tobacco shop and everyone knows you're a real estate broker and the next thing you know you're doing deals," he said. Social networking Web sites present new opportunities for real estate brokers to find and recruit new agents, or find fresh sales leads. New agents might find them useful for gleaning business advice from other ...