REACH Cohort Overview: Highlighting Key Innovators In Real Estate
In the wake of COVID-19, the real estate sector is being presented with more challenges than ever before. Innovative problem solving is required to make the most of this new normal. At its core, the goal of Second Century Ventures is to help transform the promising technology firms of tomorrow into the top real estate solutions of today. We are enabling this transformation through our REACH global initiatives. Let’s take some time to recognize the promising upside of the 16 visionary organizations we’ve backed in the US this year.
CartoFront is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) company specializing in digital solutions that make it easier for insurance providers to explain, market, and sell flood insurance to homeowners. As the frequency of large-scale flood events continues to increase, proper insurance coverage will become increasingly important. CartoFront bridges the gap between demand from homeowners and supply from reputable flood insurance providers, all while working to deliver industry-leading customer service.
To this end, CartoFront is committed to delivering a gold-standard customer experience, complete with bilingual communication, training and education programs, and personal connections with local insurance agencies. The benefits of immediate access to flood information and accurate insurance quotes are a win-win for all parties, as they prevent time, money, and energy from being wasted by homebuyers and insurance brokers.
Earnnest is transforming how money moves in real estate, empowering buyers to securely deposit electronic funds directly to an escrow holder. As young homebuyers look to make their first real estate transaction, many of them are unwilling or unable to write paper checks. While wire transfers have filled this gap in the past, many consumers view them as expensive and redundant in the age of Venmo.
Even if a buyer is willing to write a check, this outdated payment method introduces unnecessary friction for agents and escrow holders. To solve these problems, the team at Earnnest has developed a secure, fully digital solution for requesting and remitting earnest money deposits (EMDs). Thanks to its low cost, Earnnest is a promising alternative for paper checks, enabling frictionless transitions for buyers, agents, brokers, and escrow holders alike.
Kangaroo is a market leader in affordable and user-friendly security solutions. Perfect for smart home enthusiasts and small businesses, their technology provides an all-in-one security product that can be monitored from your smartphone. Associated service plans include 24/7 Professional Monitoring and cost just $10 per month, which is four-to-six times cheaper than competitors.
When compared to other home security providers, Kangaroo differentiates themselves through their dedication to customers who have been underserved in the past. An attractive cost structure combines with an easy-to-use product to make their security system versatile in a crowded market segment. These unique advantages recently propelled the company to a major insurance partnership, where the carrier offers new customers branded Kangaroo security kits.
Modus is an innovative tech company working to build the operational backbone for the real estate transactions of tomorrow. Despite the development of digital technologies, the basic real estate transaction has remained heavily reliant on physical paperwork.
Recognizing this issue, Modus has developed a vertically integrated platform that consolidates disparate real estate transactions into a single workflow. Starting with title and escrow, this solution saves real estate agencies significant time and assists them in maximizing their income through an optimized closing process.
PunchList is an up-and-coming service that helps real estate agents manage the complex task of getting home inspection repair estimates and completing necessary repairs before closing. Before PunchList, agents lacked a reliable resource for quickly pricing home inspection deficiencies or connecting with dependable contractors for repairs.
This service addresses both of these pain points, granting agents access to fast quotes and a network of reputable contracting professionals. PunchList manages the repair process from start-to-finish, providing fast and accurate estimates and helping agents find the perfect contractor for the job. Punch List is leading the way with comprehensive repair estimates from home inspections delivered in 24 hours or less.
RealX is the first and largest online property rights exchange in the United States. This innovative platform is revolutionizing how property rights are purchased, sold, and leased. The platform focuses on connecting buyers with landowners to secure leases for solar, wind, timber, and more. For example, when a developer is looking to lease land for a cell tower, they have traditionally had to send out mailers, follow up with cold-calling, and even knock on doors to connect with landowners. This process is tedious and frustrating for all parties involved.
The RealX platform transforms this historically complicated process into a quick and easy transaction. Landowners list their offerings on RealX through registered real estate professionals. Developers can search the platform for land offerings that align with their intended use cases, thus enabling deals to be struck in days instead of months.
Transactly is a platform where agents, teams, and brokerages can connect with technology-enabled transaction coordinators. While most clients initially use the platform to access on-demand transaction coordinators, Transactly is much more than just a service.
In active markets, real estate agents can quickly reach peak capacity, which puts stress on brokerages as they work to provide increased transaction assistance. This proprietary system enables automation, transparency, and collaboration, which in turn streamlines real estate transactions.
Ylopo (pronounced “why-lo-po”) is a next-generation digital marketing company providing cross-platform marketing solutions for real estate. Sporting end-to-end support, this platform has been engineered to help agents, teams, and brokerages generate increased businesses while building their unique brand. While the world of digital marketing is notoriously competitive, Ylopo outpaces its competition by consistently offering groundbreaking, first-to-market technology advancements.
When their clients wanted to use Facebook’s dynamic ads for remarketing to consumers who had previously expressed interest in purchasing real estate, the Ylopo team developed engaging video slideshows. After remarketing to the client’s database, this innovative approach yielded click-through rates four times higher than single-image dynamic advertisements, resulting in a 36x return on the initial ad-spend investment. The results speak for themselves.
Dealius is the leading brokerage management platform for commercial real estate firms. They provide owners and brokers with the ability to manage every facet of their business workflow in one integrated, web-based solution.
As the only platform that integrates transaction management, accounting, and reporting data in one centralized system, the Dealius platform is an innovation in brokerage management. It is the perfect solution for brokerages seeking to improve efficiency and productivity when managing their transactional data, accounting, and reporting.
Dealius Capital provides working capital to commercial real estate brokerages by leveraging its commission receivables to offer working capital for immediate business needs. Brokerage owners benefit from immediate capital to manage their short-term expenses without having to go through the traditionally lengthy bank loan process.
Through a quick and easy process, firms can obtain working capital within 48 hours, which can then be immediately applied to short-term business requirements. Dealius Capital is the only provider of working capital specifically engineered to meet the needs of commercial real estate brokerage firms.
Energy Producing Retail Realty (EPR2) owns and operates solar and other on-site energy solutions on behalf of building owners and tenants. Clients enjoy the benefits of affordable clean energy without the obligations of ownership, enabling them to focus on their core business while remaining eco-friendly.
Offering the only solar program that works for multi-tenant commercial properties, EPR2 doesn’t require a guarantee, subordination of existing loans, or additional financial burden on the existing investors. Clients enjoy a new roof, upgraded landscaping, and decreased electric costs.
Leasera offers a holistic platform and marketplace of on-demand tools and services which enable the automation and access of necessary data within today’s dynamic rental ecosystem. Their solution bridges the gap between property management companies (PMCs), owners, renters, and service groups to improve the way leasing is approached throughout the real estate market.
Today’s marketplace is more dynamic than ever before, yet variable duration offerings and on-demand services for PMCs and renters alike are increasingly disorganized. Leasera’s technology delivers a holistic solution, with benefits that include increased retention, net operating income, and consumer satisfaction.
Obie is an insurance and portfolio management platform for real estate investors. This promising platform combines free insurance and portfolio management tools with a full-service, technology-enabled insurance brokerage to offer competitive rates to real estate investors.
Obie users enjoy several advantages, including near-instant insurance quotes with competitive rates, user-friendly portfolio management, and reliable customer support. Consider a real estate investor with multiple rental properties. Assuming that they’re overpaying for premiums, they use Orbie to get a new insurance quote in less than 10 minutes. In an instant, they’ve saved tens of thousands of dollars on insurance and substantially increased the value of their rental portfolio.
Real Estate Software for Today’s Tenants and Brokers
Occupier has developed a unique customer relationship management (CRM) platform that provides tenant representation brokers with a smarter way to track client relationships. Occupier’s Broker CRM manages transactions, tracks client portfolio details, and facilitates communication between teams and clients.
Their modern and easy-to-use software centralizes pertinent information, empowering users to know where they stand on each deal, which sites are under evaluation, and how negotiations are developing. Centralization of these essential details helps brokers to foster proactive relationships with tenants, allowing for clear communication of critical dates, lease clauses, and rent escalations.
Pear Chef provides private chef and culinary services for the multi-family market. They work directly with residential buildings to provide made-to-order lunch and dinner offerings for residents daily, all through a technology-enabled platform.
The experience provided by Pear Chef is truly unique. Residents enjoy quick and delicious meals delivered to their door, while management teams enjoy consistently high occupancy rates. Engaging residential experiences such as catered events or cooking classes are also available, all staffed by top-quality professional chefs.
Real Time Risk Solutions (RTRS) has developed a mobile risk management platform that leverages advanced analytics to measure, analyze, and mitigate risk across any industry in real-time. Built on a single unified code base, their best-in-class platform provides users the ability to deploy custom apps to a wide range of distribution partners, thus reducing sales cycles.
This solution can be especially impactful for large real estate or construction firms managing multiple projects at once. Organizations like these rely on numerous paper forms for reporting and compliance. With RTRS, these paper-based forms can be digitized across the entire enterprise in a matter of days. In return, clients often enjoy increased productivity and a rapid return on their initial investment.