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Online home listings fetch millions of eyeballs

Part 2: America is drunk on real estate

Editor's note: The hottest housing boom in U.S. history has resulted in a newfound obsession with real estate. Home listings information is everywhere, home television shows have exploded, and everyone's talking about the sale price of their neighbor's house. This three-part series examines the trend, what is behind it and what it all means. (See Part 1:There's no escape from real estate and Part 3: Hot housing market draws opera singers, engineers.) Kristin Wall is obsessed with keeping her eyes peeled for that perfect real estate "steal." The Florida resident habitually surfs and clicks home listings on the Web even though she's admittedly happy in the house she bought just two years ago. Wall's obsession for online real estate stems from her experience with Buyowner.com, the for-sale-by-owner Web site where she found her home. She still surfs the site to satisfy her curiosity about what's on the market, and prefers to browse those listings with virtual tours first. In 1994, ...