Real Estate Advice
PR Newswire | October 25, 2023
Zillow is launching a big update to the look and feel of for-sale property listings on its website, improving home shoppers' experience with a more intuitive and simplified layout.
The enhanced design of for-sale property listings on Zillow.com offers a wider, single-scroll format, making it easier for home shoppers to find key information, such as square footage, the Zestimate feature, lot size and home type. The new layout also introduces a media section at the top of the page that better showcases photos and 3D tours. By clicking on a photo, the media section expands, providing a full-page, magazine-style layout for seamless navigation through the rest of the home's photography.
"The new design delivers a fun and efficient way to browse homes on the Zillow website, making it easier for home shoppers to navigate and process information," said Jenny Arden, chief design officer at Zillow. "We introduced a wider layout for images, larger fonts for the most important facts and a clearer articulation of what makes the home special to help our users quickly understand if the home is right for them."
Zillow's app updates: Navigate with ease and simplify financing with the Home Loans tab
In addition to the redesign on the Zillow website, for-sale property listings on the Zillow app (iOS) are also receiving an update. This new look minimizes excessive scrolling by allowing users to more easily find the information that matters the most to them, whether that's home facts and features, a cost calculator or the Zestimate history.
When viewing a for-sale listing on the app, users will see a new look that presents the home details categorized into sections such as "What's Special,"' "Market Value," "Monthly Cost" and "Neighborhood." Users can click into particular sections of interest to find more details. This new look will be available before the end of the year on the Zillow iOS app.
Zillow is also introducing a new "Home Loans" tab on the Zillow app to help shoppers become buyers. Users can now easily figure out their budget, connect with a lender, get prequalified with Zillow Home Loans℠, and track their loan status — all in one place.
"Financing is a critical part of the home-buying process, and 60% of buyers say setting their budget is their first step when buying a home. With this update, we're helping the millions of people browsing the Zillow app better understand what they can afford within their budget and see a clear path toward getting the mortgage they need," said Matt Daimler, senior vice president of product at Zillow. "We're already seeing an impact: Customers are saying it's easier than ever to access and use our financing tools and get prequalified with Zillow Home Loans."
Real Estate Technology
Flyhomes | September 12, 2023
Flyhomes, creator of the world’s best home buying and selling experience, has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase certain assets from Innovative Holdings, LLC, doing business as Home Sale Assured, a leader in the field of ‘buy before you sell.’ Founded in early 2022 by Eric Meadow, Home Sale Assured’s flagship product is the Guaranteed Backup Contract, which empowers existing homeowners to buy their next home before closing on the sale of their current one. As part of the deal, Flyhomes will be acquiring the Home Sale Assured brand, and Meadow will be joining Flyhomes in a senior executive capacity where he’ll report to EVP of Mortgage & Closing, Dan Richards.
“Eric is a seasoned mortgage professional who has built something really special with the Guaranteed Backup Contract,” said Tushar Garg, co-founder and CEO at Flyhomes. “Its ability to remove friction from the buying and selling process, while adding assurance, flexibility, and customer-centricity, aligns perfectly with our core tenants here at Flyhomes. This deal strengthens our offerings and gives us more tools to serve more customers looking for a better way to buy and sell a home.”
Following the close of the deal, lender and realtor partners will be able to continue offering their customers access to the Guaranteed Backup Contract through the Home Sale Assured brand at Flyhomes. Understanding the importance of the customer-agent relationship, Guaranteed Backup Contract was designed to enhance the role of real estate agents and lenders. This ensures everyone moves in unison toward the common goals of seamlessly transitioning the customer into their new home and selling their prior home for maximum value.
“We’re thrilled to be adding Eric and the Home Sale Assured brand to the Flyhomes family of products,” said Dan Richards, EVP of Mortgage & Closing at Flyhomes. “Eric brings 25 years of mortgage industry experience, from his time as President of Celebrity Home Loans (at the time a national multi-billion dollar retail lender) to his recent success as an entrepreneur at Home Sale Assured. His deep operational knowledge and network of relationships will play a key role in extending our portfolio of products nationwide.”
“It’s an honor to be joining Flyhomes at such a critical point in residential real estate,” said Eric Meadow, CEO and founder of Home Sale Assured. “There remain far too many obstacles to home ownership these days, be it first-time home buyers, or in the case of Home Sale Assured, current homeowners trying to move. Consumers, agents and lenders are all looking for practical solutions to overcome these institutional challenges and Flyhomes has been at the forefront of this category. I’m ecstatic to now be able to leverage their advanced infrastructure and resources to bring the Guaranteed Backup Contract to more customers.”
Benefits of the Guaranteed Backup Contract:
With a valid purchase offer, a lender is able to apply standard agency guidelines to remove the departing debt obligation from the consumer’s debt to income ratio. Thus allowing the lender to approve the loan on the new home before the consumer closes on the sale of their prior home.
The consumer is able to close on and move into their new home and take up to 90 days to close on the sale of their prior home.
The consumer can work with a real estate agent to list their prior home for sale during this 90-day option period. If the consumer receives a better offer, they can cancel the Guaranteed Backup Contract and sell their home to the higher offer.
Flyhomes is building the world’s best homebuying and selling experience. Launched in 2016, Flyhomes has reinvented the homebuying and selling process at every step, making the process smoother and simpler for consumers with offerings like the Flyhomes Cash Offer and Buy Before You Sell. They back these services with a unique guarantee that gives both buyers and sellers certainty and peace of mind that is unheard of in real estate. To date, they’ve helped clients close on more than $6 billion worth of homes at prices ranging from $150,000 to $7 million.
Real Estate Technology
Business Wire | October 19, 2023
Barings, one of the world’s largest diversified real estate investment managers, today announced its joint venture with Foulger Pratt to acquire a 172-unit build-to-rent (BTR) community in the Raleigh, N.C. metropolitan area. The $50+ million acquisition marks Barings’ entrance into the BTR market and builds on the firm’s $12.5+ billion* U.S. real estate equity platform. The transaction brings Foulger Pratt’s BTR portfolio to 700 homes and approximately $250 million in investment across North Carolina and Maryland.
“We believe build-to-rent is one of the fastest growing segments of the housing market given demographic trends, evolving consumer preferences, and a national housing shortage,” said Joe Gorin, Barings’ Head of U.S. Real Estate Equity. “We are excited to partner with the well-established team at Foulger Pratt on our first BTR acquisition and look forward to deploying more capital into attractively priced assets as we scale our capabilities in this segment.”
“Foulger Pratt is excited to continue its investment in the Carolinas through the delivery of quality rental housing in partnership with Barings – one of the world’s leading investment managers,” said Cameron Pratt, Chief Executive Officer of Foulger Pratt.
The community will consist of 89 townhomes and 83 single-family detached units situated on 39 acres in Wendell, N.C. – just east of Raleigh. The initial deliveries of homes are expected to be available for lease in H1 2024.
“We anticipate strong job, population, and household growth in this emerging submarket and believe this property will be well-positioned to offer an affordable rent alternative, a high quality of life, as well as easy access to key employment centers and top-tier universities,” said Kevin Miller, Barings’ Head of Real Estate Acquisitions, Eastern U.S.
Barings has been investing in U.S. real estate equity for nearly 30 years and today has $35.5 billion* in U.S. real estate AUM across equity and debt, with nearly 130 dedicated real estate investment professionals across six U.S. offices managing more than 550 assets.