Drew Uher Founder at HomeLight
HomeLight is reinventing the $1.7 trillion real estate industry by partnering with more than 28,000 agents across the United States to make it easier for people to buy and sell their homes.
What are the challenges that HomeLight address in the property technology space?
The past decade has seen the real estate industry be disrupted by technology.
“PropTech” is a recent buzzword in commercial and residential real estate. Similar to “FinTech” (‘finance + technology”), PropTech is the innovative approach to real estate in which technology optimizes the way people research, buy, sell, and manage properties.
Many proptech companies introduced in recent years are building products to completely cut out agents from the transaction process entirely. The rise of tech-only solutions in real estate is spurring fear from 1.3 million+ real estate agents in the United States that technology will replace the crucial human experience that agents provide – putting their careers and livelihoods at risk.
HomeLight is a rare proptech company blending the best of both worlds: building state of the art technology to optimize the way people research, buy and sell a home while keeping agents at the core of the real estate transaction process.
At HomeLight, everything we do is focused on a singular goal: finding the top agents and teams, connecting them with the right clients, and building the tools to help them be the absolute best at what they do. It’s this approach that sets us apart from countless other proptech companies in the space trying to remove agents from the real estate transaction process.
Since our founding in 2012, we’ve proven that this approach of keeping agents at the center of the transaction and giving them tools to help set them apart helps clients sell their homes faster and for more money.
We firmly believe that this approach is the future of the real estate. It’s why, together with top agents across the country, we’re using technology to transform how people buy and sell homes. And in the past 12 months, HomeLight has proven the future of real estate is technology-powered and agent-driven.
HomeLight powers the businesses of top agents across the United States and isn’t a technology they fear will one day replace them. We’re building the tools and technology which empower not replace agents to help homebuyers and sellers achieve the best possible outcome at any step of the real estate transaction process.
Could you please cite one or two case studies on how you have enabled clients to overcome hurdles and attain desired outcomes with your innovative array of solutions?
At HomeLight, we believe that everyone deserves to be provided with equal opportunities and education to own a home. We’re building the tools and technology to empower all homebuyers and sellers with the ability to achieve homeownership – and to make the transaction as frictionless as possible.
Take one of our customers, Nancy a retiree in the San Francisco Bay Area who was hoping to move closer to her family right when the pandemic hit.
When the perfect house hit the market three doors down from her daughter’s family outside of Sacramento, Nancy made an offer only to lose out to an all cash buyer.
Nancy’s contingent offer was simply too risky for the sellers, even after the original all cash offer fell through. At the same time, it wasn’t safe for Nancy to host open houses and sell her home the traditional way. It also wasn’t financially feasible for her to vacate her home without a bridge loan.
Enter HomeLight Trade-In, which helped Nancy receive an above asking offer for her home after only two days on the market. Nancy was able to purchase her dream home down the block from her family with an all-cash offer. She’s now happily watching her grandchildren as the entire family works and learns from home.
Consider the Swaminathan family who, after 15 failed offers, learned about and used Cash Offer to ultimately win their dream home and close in 8 days. When the Swaminathan family set out to buy their first home in Fremont, CA, they faced a market filled with cash buyers offering quick closes. After submitting offers unsuccessfully on 15 homes over four months, it seemed the Swaminathans couldn’t win. When they finally found their dream home, they worked with their agent and HomeLight Cash Offer to break the frustrating cycle. Powered by HomeLight Cash Offer, the team made an all-cash offer with an 8-day close and won against eight other buyers to close on the home of their dreams.
There are a number of companies out there that are vying for the top position. What are the strategies employed by HomeLight to thwart the market competition and what, according to you, are the distinct features HomeLight / differentiating factors that give it a competitive edge?
HomeLight has a singular goal: to root out every moment of friction, pain, and uncertainty in the transaction process. We’re building the tools and technology to replace complexity with simplicity and frustration with satisfaction. By doing so, we’re able to deliver better outcomes to buyers and sellers everywhere by partnering with top agents nationwide.
With the onset of iBuyers and other technology introduced in the past decade, many proptech companies are building products to cut agents out of the transaction process entirely. This is where HomeLight uniquely differs and excels from its competitors. It’s this approach that is changing the real estate industry for the better.
By empowering agents with technology, HomeLight is harnessing their influence to build a billion dollar company, all while helping agents’ businesses thrive empowering homebuyers and sellers to achieve the best possible outcomes along the way.
What does the future hold for your organization? Any footprint expansion plans or platform enhancement strategies that you can shed light upon?
The future is bright for HomeLight. Since our Series C raise in October 2019, we are proud to say we have experienced sustained growth at approximately 3x year-over-year, with annual revenue set to triple to more than $300 million in 2021. We’ve doubled down on our flagship financial products, HomeLight Trade-In™ and HomeLight Cash Offer™, growing the products by more than 700% since their launch in January 2020. And, we’ve grown the team by more than 180% year-over-year and expanded local operations to Texas, Florida, and Colorado.
As we look into the new year, we’re working quickly to bring our flagship offerings such as HomeLight Cash Offer, Trade In, and HomeLight Closing Services to new markets across the country to keep up with high demand from agents, homebuyers, and sellers alike.