Buying Homes from Your Smartphone: RebateCrew Looks to Disrupt Real Estate Agents

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RebateCrew claims it has simplified the buying process by allowing buyers to save thousands of dollars while providing the convenience of negotiating the purchase of a home on a smartphone or computer.

The savings are passed along to the buyer, according to the Vancouver-based startup.

For the average price of a detached home in Vancouver ($1.27M) you will receive a rebate of more than $10,000, and a rebate of $3,800 for an average condo ($450k), the Canadian company says.

RELATED: Real Estate Industry Still Fighting Unwinnable War Against Disruption

In every residential real estate transaction, there are usually four parties involved: buyer, buying agent, seller, and selling agent. The typical commission seller for selling a home is 7% for the first $100K, and then 3.5% on the remaining balance. This commission is usually split 50/50 between the buying agent and the selling agent. In the case that a buyer does not have his own buying agent, the selling agent can represent both the buyer and seller and take 100% of the commission.

“RebateCrew essentially provides all the services a buying agent provides, and rebates a 50% cut of the buying agent’s commission back to the buyer after the deal closes,” the startup says.

RebateCrew has developed a new software that automates many of the manual real estate tasks. Homebuyers browse the internet for the home they are interested. Then, once the buyer would like to make an offer, they can visit RebateCrew to submit an offer. RebateCrew’s system will then process and submit the offer to the seller, and help negotiate any counter offers. Once the offer is accepted, RebateCrew will help buyers navigate the closing process. Upon completion, 50% of the buying agent commission paid to RebateCrew will be rebated to the buyer.

“We encrypt all of our data transmitted over the internet with Secure Socket Layer (SSL) and every step of the real estate transaction will be supervised by our in house real estate experts,” the company says.

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