HomeLight’s platform makes real estate transactions simple, certain and satisfying

HomeLight | December 02, 2019

HomeLight aims to provide the top agents in the United States with innovative services in real estate that allow them to provide exceptional service for their customers. HomeLight is tackling friction points at each stage of the real estate transaction, using technology that empowers real estate agents to deliver optimal outcomes and enables consumers to make smarter decisions about one of the biggest financial decisions of their lifetime. Buying and selling a house can be difficult. There’s an opportunity to improve at every turn, but there is no silver bullet. That’s why HomeLight aims to develop the transaction of the future by combining services that help real estate agents better meet their clients’ needs – from getting a mortgage to the final closing stages all under one roof.

Spotlight

Brickchain Investments, Ltd (“Brickchain”) is a London based corporation founded in the first quarter of 2018 with the aim of bridging emerging blockchain technology together with the real-estate market, consequently giving everyone the possibility to make low-risk and profitable real estate asset investments. The use of blockchain technology enables users to enhance their access to detailed information on assets as well as financial forecasts and buy/sell transparently through our Real Estate marketplace platform, REMARK Trust. Brickchain’s mission is to level the playing field for Real Estate investments with the power of blockchain technology.


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REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY

iGo Launches iGo Network: A National Home Inspection Booking Platform

InspectionGo (iGo) | April 06, 2022

InspectionGo (iGo), provider of technology and services to the home inspection industry, announces the launch of iGo Network, a national platform for real estate agents, consumers, and investors to order home inspections through a digital, but human-enhanced, booking service. iGo Network was created to make property inspection booking and delivery more accurate and efficient, and solves the geographical fragmentation in the inspection industry. For real estate or technology companies seeking inspection services across multiple markets, iGo Network provides a central, digital solution for tapping into reputable inspectors nationwide. Participating inspectors meet ongoing service standards and are committed to maintaining a high bar for E&O and general liability insurance. We are excited to launch iGo Network. The majority of home inspections today are ordered via a 12-minute phone call, making it cumbersome and error prone. We are changing this, and now with a modern national platform, the inspection can be incorporated into a more cohesive and enjoyable consumer journey." Celeste Starchild, COO of iGo Every inspection booked through iGo Network comes with a repair estimate report from Repair Pricer – the industry's most accurate AI-powered home repair cost calculator. With an accuracy rate of 98%, Repair Pricer reduces time and stress associated with gathering repair estimates from contractors during a critical time in the closing process. "We are thrilled to join forces with iGo to launch iGo Network," said Christian, co-founder of Repair Pricer. "Agents have been asking us for years for an easy way to book with inspectors that will provide them with Repair Pricer reports as standard. iGo Network not only meets this demand, but it brings best-in-class tools and services together to deliver a game changing experience for the industry as a whole." Inspection companies gained advance access to join the iGo Network at iGo's annual conference in February, where more than 400 inspectors signed up for the platform. With dozens of market-leading multi-inspector firms participating at launch, iGo Network is positioned to bring a higher level of professionalism and standards to the industry. For inspectors, iGo Network provides a source of new business without compromising control and confidentiality of their client data. "The inspection industry needs a trusted partner to meet the opportunities of the future. I believe that partner is iGo, and Axium Inspections is proud to be a founding member of the iGo Network," said Wade Williamson, CEO of Axium Inspections. About InspectionGo (iGo) iGo, is a leading provider of technology and services for the home inspection industry. iGo's vision is to empower home owners and their agents with professional, digitally driven home inspection services and actionable insights about their homes, making home ownership more joyful. Based in Tyrone, PA, iGo also operates iGo Community, the nation's largest business coaching group for inspection company owners, iGo Academy, the gold standard for home inspector education in 17 states, and iGo Booking, the nation's foremost home inspection booking service. About Repair Pricer Repair Pricer is an AI-powered repair estimator that can turn any inspection report into a highly accurate fully-interactive repair estimate. The buyer's agent receives this report, with the option to modify the final display for their buyer. Customizable, universal, automated and secure, Repair Pricer is demanded by real estate professionals and investors nationwide.

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MORTGAGE AND LENDING

First Street Foundation Finds Over 30.4 Million Properties Have a 1% or Greater Chance of Experiencing a Wildfire During the Course of a Mortgage

First Street Foundation | May 16, 2022

First Street Foundation released the First Street Foundation Wildfire Model, the only nationwide, probabilistic, climate adjusted, peer reviewed, property specific wildfire risk model for properties in the contiguous United States. Detailed in the 5th National Risk Assessment: Fueling the Flames, the model provides a first of its kind analysis of the risk individual properties face from damaging wildfires, and up to 30 years in the future as a result of climate changes. Nationwide, the report finds nearly 20 million properties face "Moderate" risk, (up to a 6% chance of experiencing a wildfire over 30 years); 6 million properties face "Major" risk (up to 14% risk over 30 years); nearly 3 million face "Severe" risk (up to 26% over 30 years); and approximately 1.5 million face "Extreme" risk (greater than 26% risk over 30 years). Over 49 million properties face less than 1% chance of experiencing a wildfire over a 30-year period, or "Minor" risk in the model. Wildfire has become one of the most common and dangerous climate perils, increasingly spreading from heavily forested areas to more populous urban and suburban environments. According to NOAA, damage associated with wildfires has grown substantially, with $81.7 billion, or 66% of all direct losses since 1980, occurring in the last five years. Yet today, neither the public nor private sector have developed a simple methodology or tool to help homeowners, buyers or renters understand a property's wildfire risk, and make informed decisions to protect them. Existing tools like USDA Forest Service's wildfire risk assessment are designed to help fire officials understand how risk varies across a state, region, or county; it is explicitly not meant to help homeowners understand their personal risk. To address this gap, First Street Foundation will make this critical wildfire risk information available to users for free through Risk FactorTM, where Fire FactorTM data will be presented alongside Flood Factor and other future perils, giving users a comprehensive understanding of their homes from physical climate risk today and 30 years into the future. Like Flood Factor, Fire Factor data will be integrated into Realtor.com, providing visitors to the site a property-level wildfire risk assessment in the form of a risk ranking from 1 (Minimal) to 10 (Extreme) for each property on the site. Users interested in commercial real estate can also find this data integrated with Crexi. "The lack of a property specific, climate adjusted wildfire risk for individual properties has severely hindered everyone from the federal government to your average American," said Matthew Eby, Founder and Executive Director of First Street Foundation. "As a changing climate drives more frequent and severe wildfire events, Fire Factor will prove critical in ensuring everyone has the insights they need to understand their personal risk to avoid and protect against the devastating impact of a wildfire." According to a recent Realtor.com survey, seven out of ten recent homebuyers considered the risk of natural disasters when deciding where to live. Realtor.com is adding Fire Factor to maps and properties to help home shoppers and homeowners make informed decisions. Wildfire risk information empowers consumers to protect their homes against the increasing threat of wildfire damage." Sara Brinton, Lead Product Manager, Realtor.com Building the model brought together top climate and data scientists, technologists, and modelers from other leading organizations; the Spatial Informatics Group, Reax Engineering, and Eagle Rock Analytics who are members of the Pyregrence Consortium as well as the USGS, and architectural design & engineering consulting group Arup. This group combined decades of peer reviewed research and expertise in next-generation modeling techniques to create an open source, freely available wildfire model that accounts for current and future climate conditions.

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REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT

Toorak Capital Partners Closes $285M Residential Bridge and $363M DSCR Securitizations

Toorak Capital Partners | March 15, 2022

Toorak Capital Partners, Inc., a leading capital provider to the residential real estate lending industry, announced the successful closing of TRK 2022-1, a $285 million securitization of residential bridge loans, following the closing of TRK 2022-INV1, a $363 million securitization of DSCR loans last month. Toorak’s securitizations received investor demand despite a volatile and oversupplied market. To date, the company has issued $2.7+ billion in securitizations across nine deals, including six revolving transactions backed by bridge loans and three rated transactions backed by long-term investor loans on rental properties. We are focused and proud of the social impact Toorak has had. In addition to aiding in the delivery and availability of units to the market, many of which are affordable, Toorak’s funding brings jobs and opportunities to areas that are often neglected by large investors. Our bridge loan borrowers are entrepreneurs who invest the funds we provide to hire and employ local workers, many with untraditional backgrounds and in low-income neighborhoods.” John Beacham, Toorak CEO The initial collateral underlying the TRK 2022-1 securitization consisted of 583 residential bridge loans that financed approximately 1,300 housing units, 78% of which are expected to be affordable upon rehabilitation and/or stabilization in their respective zip codes, where the median household income was close to $55,900. The TRK 2022-INV1 securitization consisted of 1,254 rental mortgages that financed around 2,300 units, with an average underwritten rent of approximately $1,600 per unit, compared to a median household income of $55,700 in their respective zip codes. With capital commitments from entities managed by KKR, a leading global investment firm, Toorak has revolutionized the way business purpose residential real estate lenders access capital. The firm was the first to link small-balance commercial and residential originators with institutional capital and has perfected this approach in the single-family residential bridge and 30-year single family rental lending space. About Toorak Capital Partners Toorak Capital Partners is an integrated correspondent lending platform based in Summit, NJ. Toorak acquires small-balance, business-purpose loans backed by residential, multifamily, and mixed-use properties throughout the U.S. and the U.K. Toorak acquires loans directly from lenders that originate high credit quality loans. Toorak’s principals have a deep understanding of mortgage credit in the residential and commercial space with backgrounds in real estate lending, capital markets, securitization, asset-liability management, asset management and credit. Since inception, Toorak has provided more than $7.5 billion in capital and funded over 20,000 business-purpose loans. Toorak-funded projects have renovated, stabilized or provided rental housing for close to 40,000 families to date – an average of approximately 1,000 families per month in 2021.

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BUYING/SELLING

SWBC Real Estate Sells Royalton Portfolio for $350M

SWBC | June 22, 2022

SWBC Real Estate, LLC, announced that it recently sold five multi-family properties in the Royalton Portfolio. Marcus & Millichap's Institutional Property Advisors (IPA) handled the sale for SWBC Real Estate. It's apparent that there is still a very aggressive appetite for new multi-family properties in the Dallas and Austin markets, as there was a large amount of interest in the sale of these properties. Additionally, the recent uptick in interest rates are causing some concern with the future values of commercial real estate properties; however, the continued interest in the multi-family sector in well-located areas throughout Texas has remained strong at this time." Stuart Smith, Chief Operating Officer of SWBC Real Estate, LLC Each property is a Class A multi-family complex situated in high-growth areas, within close proximity to a major city in Texas. The continued population growth across the state helped escalate the leasing velocity for each property, while also providing attractive rent growth throughout the lease-up of the portfolio. IPA's Joey Tumminello, Will Balthrope, Jordan Featherston, Michael Ware, Taylor Hill, Kent Myers, Asher Hall, Grant Raymond, Jeffrey Kindorf, and Drew Kile represented SWBC Real Estate in this transaction. "Our statewide team worked seamlessly together to deliver the utmost results for our client, producing two top buyers in Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin, Texas," said Drew Kile, IPA. "Handling the sale of five new construction assets in different markets came down to finding the right buyers looking to expand their footprint in best-in-class, Suburban Core product." The purchaser of the Dallas-Fort Worth area properties was Lightbulb Capital Group, the Family Office of Jay Schuminsky. Brixton Capital purchased the Austin Property. Both buyers are located in California. "This was a special opportunity to scale our DFW multi-family footprint with four best-in-class properties in highly desired markets," said Jay Schuminsky, Lightbulb Capital Group. SWBC Real Estate recently began construction on its latest project The Royalton at Creeks of Legacy in Celina, Texas, and has several more developments currently planned, of which will be included as part of the recently raised SWBC Real Estate Fund. About SWBC Real Estate SWBC Real Estate, LLC is owned by SWBC Enterprises, Ltd. SWBC Real Estate is managed by an experienced team of real estate professionals located in Dallas, Texas, with a primary focus in multi-family development. SWBC Enterprises, Ltd. is owned by Charlie Amato and Gary Dudley, co-founders of SWBC. SWBC is a diversified financial services company providing a wide range of insurance, mortgage, and investment services to financial institutions, businesses, and individuals. With offices across the country, SWBC is committed to providing quality products, outstanding service, and customized solutions in all 50 states. About Institutional Property Advisors (IPA) Institutional Property Advisors (IPA) is a division of Marcus & Millichap, a leading commercial real estate services firm in North America. IPA's combination of real estate investment and capital markets expertise, industry-leading technology, and acclaimed research offer customized solutions for the acquisition, disposition and financing of institutional properties and portfolios.

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Spotlight

Brickchain Investments, Ltd (“Brickchain”) is a London based corporation founded in the first quarter of 2018 with the aim of bridging emerging blockchain technology together with the real-estate market, consequently giving everyone the possibility to make low-risk and profitable real estate asset investments. The use of blockchain technology enables users to enhance their access to detailed information on assets as well as financial forecasts and buy/sell transparently through our Real Estate marketplace platform, REMARK Trust. Brickchain’s mission is to level the playing field for Real Estate investments with the power of blockchain technology.

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