Michael Yang, general manager of Yahoo Real Estate, oversees three lines of business for the Web portal and search company.

Yahoo Real Estate features property listings searches for existing homes, rentals and foreclosures, as well as home values, the ability to find a Realtor, and information guides on finance, mortgage and home buying and selling topics.

Yang will speak at Real Estate Connect in San Francisco, July 23-25, 2008.

He answered a set of questions posed by Inman News:

What do you see happening in the real estate market in 2008?

More of the same. What’s transpired in the first half the year will continue through the second half of the year.

What advice do you have to help real estate agents and brokers get through this market?

First, spend your hard-earned dollars wisely and challenge yourself to show a positive ROI on everything you do. Second, don’t believe the hype — whatever it may be. Do your own diligence before taking action.

What was your first job?

Warehouse worker for Best Products (now defunct, East Coast general merchandise retail store).

What made you join your current company?

Yahoo is such a great representation of all things on the Web and there’s so much going on here — how could I not want to join? And then to top it off, I was given the opportunity to really grow and accelerate the development of Yahoo Real Estate, a start-up opportunity within a large company. You really can’t beat that.

What’s been your biggest challenge in running the business?

I actually run three lines of business for Yahoo, so the biggest kick for me each day is to try to seamlessly transition from one to another and to identify parallels across them.

If you had one thing to do over again in your life, what would it be?

Coulda, shoulda, woulda. There are definitely some stock-picking fiascos that I’d rather not relive, but that’s relatively mundane. There’s really nothing I would do over again.

What style of home do you live in and when did you buy it?

In the winter of 2006, we tore down a 1950s ranch, took 10 months to build something, and moved in during the fall of 2007. This is the fourth home we’ve bought since 1999.

What worries keep you awake at night?

The general state of the U.S. economy is a little frightening these days, and in my opinion, the economy drives everything.

What lesson did you learn in the last year?

Real estate remains such a topical subject in the press, in the media and in consumers’ minds, and there appears to be no end in sight.

What would your second career choice be?

A tie between a professional soccer player (if I were good enough) and a safari guide (if I had enough time on my hands).

What kind of music do you listen to?

I’m old school — whatever is playing on the radio in my car as I furiously flip channels.

Who is your hero?

Both of my parents.

Hear Yang speak at Real Estate Connect in San Francisco, July 23-25, 2008. The conference program and registration are available online via the Connect Web site.


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