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HomeLight, a real estate referral company based in San Francisco, Calif., is now extending its services, diving into the iBuyer segment with Simple Sale™.
The offering reportedly opens sellers to a pool of 100 preapproved local and national iBuyers in 40-plus U.S. markets spanning more than 11,000 zip codes, according to HomeLight, and provides an alternative to the traditional listing process for those looking to expedite the sale of their home.
What does the process entail?
- First, sellers answer a series of questions regarding the property, including home type, the condition of the house, how soon they’re looking to move and their reason for moving.
- Next, those interested in selling can request home offers by filling out a standard contact form with their name, email and phone number.
- Sellers will receive information about the highest bidder from HomeLight and can either accept or reject the offer. HomeLight matches up iBuyers according to several preset preferences that align with the seller’s inputted information.
HomeLight emphasizes that sellers typically net more money if they pursue a traditional listing method instead. The company leaves options open by displaying a side-by-side comparison of the price the seller could receive if they list traditionally.
“HomeLight’s priority has always been to help home sellers make the most informed decision, which today includes listing with an agent and selling to an instant buyer,” said J.J. McCarthy, general manager of Simple Sale, in a statement. “Sellers who are interested in getting the highest price for their home will generally achieve that through the help of a top local agent; however, by presenting all of the options, we’re providing home sellers with a more complete spectrum of solutions and helping them make an informed choice that best fits their timeline and other needs.”
According to HomeLight, the company will soon be releasing (in March 2019) a tool that agents can use to present instant offers to their sellers. Once agents sign up as Simple Sale agents—free of charge, as HomeLight does not allow buyers and agents to pay to be featured within the platform—they’ll have access to a dedicated calculator to be used during the listing presentation that displays the offer price sellers would likely receive from an iBuyer.
Then, using the Simple Sale website, agents can request a written offer and possibly show the property to the potential buyer. Once they receive the offer (within 24-48 hours), agents can either accept or reject on their client’s behalf and negotiate closing details.
At the end of the sale, participating agents receive a commission from HomeLight. HomeLight claims it will be providing “the industry’s top commission” for seller referrals into the iBuying program. According to the site, agents can expect to earn up to 2 percent at closing if they refer a seller. Similar iBuyer companies, such as Opendoor and Offerpad, offer a 1 percent referral fee. iBuyer Roofstock’s commission structure is a bit more complex and more like that of a traditional buyer’s agent, charging 2.5 percent of the sales price upon closing when agents list a property through the platform.
“We are passionate about ensuring that homeowners receive the best outcome when selling their homes,” McCarthy said. “Our flagship HomeLight agent-matching product was the first of its kind to show agent performance data online and allows sellers and buyers to select the perfect agent for their needs. With Simple Sale, we’re helping home sellers to understand even more of their options, make the best choice for their specific priorities and get the best outcome possible.”
Liz Dominguez is RISMedia’s associate content editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at email@example.com.