Utah-based e-brokerage startup, Homie, is expanding beyond its birthplace into Arizona a year after its national debut.
Homie allows home owners and potential buyers to buy and sell homes without the need for a traditional real estate agent online.
According to its website, Homie automates the process, eliminates the need for an agent and takes care of everything from lending to searching as well as title and purchasing.
Homie states it has become the second largest brokerage in Utah after only 18 months. The startup was founded on the basis of creating a less complicated process for the home buying and selling industry, but more importantly, saving residents money. According to Homie, it saved Utah residents over $17M, with an average of $10K per transaction.
The software was developed by serial entrepreneur and Homie CEO Johnny Hanna. He previously developed a software called Entrata, a device for apartment landlords to post transactions to ledgers, automate renewal processes and organize new residents with ease. Hanna took what he learned in this business and decided to base Homie in the heart of Utah’s sprouting tech sector of Salt Lake City.
So why Arizona? Homie’s website offers a suggestion box which begs the question, “To where should Homie expand next?”
“Phoenix got the most requests,” Hanna explained, “We see similarities between the Utah and Arizona markets.”
Hanna went on to mention that the Utah market essentially sells itself. In other words, everybody is looking to buy a home. Arizona shows the same trend.
Within the industry, there are countless companies and websites that help potential homebuyers and sellers with the transaction, whether they show pricing information, tax history or local brokerage information. Zillow, for example, shows all of this valuable information for many demographics across the United States. But the number of companies actually automating the home buying and selling process is limited. According to Hanna, Homie’s main competition in Arizona is a company called Opendoor.
“We like Opendoor because they are contributors to the automated home buying and selling business,” mentioned Hanna, “but they take up to 6 to12 percent commission, when we are trying to take less than 1 percent.”
Homie looks to eventually automate the entire process, including title and escrow. Sister company, Homie Loans, will also be available to Arizonians. Hanna says he is hopeful that an escrow business is soon to follow suit.
“We are extremely excited to come to Arizona,” Hanna exclaimed, “we are planning on expanding as soon as humanly possible.”