Homie, the Utah-based real estate startup that occupies the space between For Sale by Owner and hiring a realtor, has announced that they are now open for business in Nevada. According to a blog post on Homie, they have helped Utah home sellers, saying that in 2016, “Homie saved Utah families more than $3,900,000 in real estate commissions. That’s an average savings of $10,000 per family.”
Live in Utah or Nevada and want to work with Homie? Save $50 on your initial signup fee.
Now Nevada families can use Homie to help them sell or buy a home and avoid paying up to 6% of their home’s equity. Nevada will be Homie’s second state. Why Nevada? There are more homeowners (14.2%) who are underwater. They owe more on their home than their home is now worth (source; 2016 CoreLogic Equity Report). “In Las Vegas and surrounding areas (Henderson and Paradise), that number is 16.2%.” Saving that commission can make a big difference. “Nationwide numbers reveal that an increase of even 5% would bring 600,000 properties out of their negative equity situation.”
Some real estate agents are threatened by Homie but these homes are unlikely to be listed with an agent.
How Homie Helps Home Sellers in Utah or Nevada
Homie helps people buy and sell a home without a real estate agent. Here are the services they provide for a setup and then monthly fee:
- List your home on all of the major national and regional real estate sites from Zillow to Trulia in addition to listing it on On Homie.com.
- When you list on Homie.com they show two prices, one with an agent and the price of the home if you use Homie (no agent fees).
- Option to pay additional to have your home listed on the MLS.
- Give a valuation of your home.
- Provide a “for sale” sign for your lawn with a unique phone number that Homie answers and screens to avoid taking calls from real estate agents or others who are not potential buyers.
- Take professional photos of your home.
- Give you a lockbox for your home.
- Supply all of the legal paperwork you need to sell your home.
- Access to their team of real estate attorneys and other professionals to help you sell your home.
Here’s how Homie helps you buy a home.
In a recent interview I had with their head of marketing, I learned that Homie plans to continue to expand into other states. I know some agents are threatened by Homie – but Homie maintains that they are not anti-real estate agent, but pro tech.
Common Challenges Faced When Selling your Own Home
Research from the Association of Realtors reveals the challenges many for sale by owners face with marketing. According to the stats, only 8% of buyers found a home from a sign and 41% do not actively market their home at all!
Top methods used to market a home (by owner):
- Yard sign: 33%
- Friends, relatives, or neighbors: 21%
- Online classified advertisements: 10%
- Open house: 21%
- For-sale-by-owner websites: 7%
- Social networking websites (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, etc.): 9%
- Multiple Listing Service (MLS) website: 13%
- Print newspaper advertisement: 3%
- Direct mail (flyers, postcards, etc.): 2%
- Video: 1%
- None: Did not actively market home: 41%
That last point is painful to read! Instead of putting their home online, many rely on a yard sign or word of mouth.
The top 3 challenges for selling by owner:
- Getting the right price: 18%
- Preparing/fixing up home for sale: 13%
- Understanding and performing paperwork: 12%
Here are the top ways that people find a home to purchase:
- Internet: 51%
- Real estate agent: 34%
- Yard sign/open house sign: 8%
- Friend, relative or neighbor: 4%
- Home builder or their agent: 2%
- Directly from sellers/Knew the sellers: 1%
- Print newspaper advertisement: 1%
Yes, the #1 place buyers find homes for sale is by searching online.
It’s a lot like buying a car. You read reviews and do your own research and go to a car dealer when you have narrowed down your choices. Even though you’re doing a lot of the work up front, you pay the same. Agents help you navigate the negotiations, price your home accurately and more.
Would you use a service like Homie to sell or buy a home? Why or why not?