Wed 29 Mar 2017 1:15PM

Seeding Real Estate Unconferences & Housing Hacks in Boston

BW Bill Wendel Public Seen by 342

FLASHBACK: When Zillow announced a housing hack two years ago, they expected 200 people; nearly twice that number participated.

FAST FORWARD: HUD's new Secretary has no housing experience, and the Trump administration has proposed $6B in housing cuts. Uncertainty around funding threatens to freeze some affordable housing developments. Two years ago, Huffington Post asked if it's time for a #HousingJustice movement. Let's put that onto the Hack agenda by asking hackers to begin crowdsourcing a People's Housing Policy (see http://bit.ly/1st100RE2020 ).

Participants may also want to work on projects to:

  • Tax #SpeculatorsWithoutBorders,
  • Reform zoning,
  • Develop tools like a blockchain-enabled #HousingID.

A proposal to regulate blind bidding wars that "won" the audience vote at MIT's blockchain prototype hackathon (January 2016) shows what's possible:


The bottomline is that Millennials face unprecedented housing burdens and we need to cocreate a money-saving real estate ecosystem by the year 2020.

RE2020's goal is to cohost or participate in unconferences, hacks or similar events quarterly before the National Association of Realtors hosts their annual convention in Boston in November 2018. See link below for open, collaborative platform:


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A recent presentation on regional housing demand hosted at MIT by @ABetterCambridge attracted one state representative, one standing city councilor and two city council candidates. So, it's clear that engaging the affordable housing community is a powerful opportunity.

#RE2020 also seeks to engage the innovation community and other stakeholders in Boston, so at a minimum, we would invite four existing MeetUps in Boston:

  • Boston Real Estate Tech (#BosRETech),
  • Massachusetts Legal Hackers,
  • Personal Data Boston
  • Defensive Homebuying.

We could also invite participants from the academic community, including

  • Harvard's Joint Center for Housing Studies,
  • Northeastern's Real Estate Club and
  • MIT's new DesignX lab for housing, city planning & real estate

Other stakeholders: Who should we add to this starter list?

  • Mass. Association of Buyers Agents
  • CHAPA's network of affordable housing counseling agencies.

Any other ideas, comments, questions?

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A year ago, #RE2020 hosted it's first #RE2020 unconference at ImpactHub Boston. Want to meet there anytime from 6-9pm Monday night, April 3rd and talk about how we can build on this event?


Or as news that the Republican controlled Congress voted yesterday to roll back privacy protections on personal data, should we can use Monday night to discuss this emergency issue: Fiduciary Duties in Real Estate: Past, Present & Future