NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Better, one of the fastest-growing digital homeownership companies in the United States, announced today the expansion of its real estate arm, Better Real Estate (BRE), to Alabama and Michigan. The expansion makes Better Real Estate's in-house brokerage available to home buyers and sellers in 26 markets across 16 states, with plans to expand to 20 states by the end of 2021.
Unlike traditional brokers, BRE licensed agents are salaried and incentivized to satisfy customers rather than to just close transactions in pursuit of a fast commission. When people buy and sell a home, they can pay for help from real estate brokers, buyer and seller agent commissions usually total around 5% to 6% of a house's sale price. BRE allows customers to save the traditional agent commission1, equating to ~$21,798 on the current median existing-home price of $363,300.
Americans spent an estimated $86 billion in real estate commissions last year, according to Real Trends.
The company offers customers savings equivalent to 1%2 of the purchase price, along with a white-glove approach in helping its customers buy the house of their dreams. The refund is paid by Better Real Estate (BRE) within 30 days of closing, allowing customers to have peace of mind.
Uniquely, Better simplifies the home transaction process by also offering its customers mortgage and insurance services through Better Mortgage, Better Cover and Better Settlement Services. BRE customers that choose to use Better Mortgage, the sister company of the in-house brokerage, will receive an additional $2,000 discount in lender credits.
“Removing friction and costs for consumers is a critical component for our customers in what is a complex, emotional, and expensive transaction, arguably the biggest financial transaction most of us will make in our lifetimes,” said Vishal Garg, CEO, and Founder of Better. “Our goal is to democratize the American Dream of homeownership by making the process faster, easier and cheaper for all, as the status quo is antiquated and in dire need of being replaced. That’s what we hope to accomplish as we continue our footprint across the United States.”
In addition to cost savings, Better’s technology-driven platform allows for innovative offerings that promote faster, more efficient real estate closings:
- Non-Commissioned Agents: Agents employed by Better Real Estate earn a salary, ensuring they’re incentivized by meeting their clients’ buying and selling needs and goals, rather than chasing their next lead.
- Better Closing Guarantee: guarantees Better Mortgage customers will close on time. If there are delays with their loan or issues on Better Mortgage’s end that prevent you from closing on time, Better Mortgage will pay those customers $2,000 in lender credits.
- Fast Pre-Approval & Closing: customers who use Better Mortgage can get pre-approved in as little as three minutes and close ten days faster than the industry average, all without commissions and fees.
- Better’s Appraisal Guarantee: ensures Better Mortgage customers’ mortgages are funded at the original terms -- including down payment, APR, and monthly payment -- regardless of the final appraised value. Better Appraisal Guarantee boosts the odds of an accepted offer by more than 50%3, creating a more successful and seamless transaction for all parties.
Over the last year, BRE has seen its customer headcount double, with over $8 billion in real estate transactions across its in-house brokerage and partner network.
“Our meteoric growth trajectory at BRE right now is proof that consumers are desperate for a better way to buy and sell their homes,” said Christian Wallace, Head of Real Estate Services at Better. “In today’s competitive housing market, every dollar saved counts, and we’re proud to bring our non-commission model to Alabamians and Michiganders in our quest to make homeownership simpler, faster, and cheaper for all Americans.”
Alabama and Michigan mark the 15th and 16th states in BRE’s nationwide expansion and come on the heels of tremendous growth for Better. The pandemic’s impact has driven demand for Better's digital solution, funding over $24.2 billion funded loan volume and 490% year-over-year growth from 20194.
Better Real Estate (BRE) is expanding its headcount and looking to hire agents within both Alabama and Michigan and nationwide. This year alone, Better Real Estate has hired 250 agents and plans to employ 500 salaried real estate agents in 25 states by November.
As salaried agents, Better Real Estate agents start with an unrivaled base salary coupled with client service quality linked incentives totaling over $120,000, which is double the average agent salary of $60,000. To learn more about career opportunities, see here.
To learn more about Better’s services, go to better.com.
Founded in 2016, Better is a digital-first homeownership company whose services included mortgage, real estate, title, and homeowners insurance. From its founding in 2016 through 2020, Better funded $30.9B in home loans and provided over $7B in cumulative coverage through Better Cover and Better Settlement Services, the insurance divisions of Better. Better has raised over $400M in equity capital since inception. The company was ranked #15 on CNBC’s Disruptor 50 2020 list, as well as being listed to Forbes FinTech 50 for 2020. For more information, follow @betterdotcom.
1 Availability varies state by state
2 The Offer is available in all States except for Alabama, Alaska, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Oregon and Tennessee.
3 *Results based on a survey of 104 real estate agents in competitive markets. Of those surveyed, more than ~60% responded that waiving the appraisal contingency could increase the likelihood of having a competitive offer accepted by 50% or more. Results may vary and are not intended to represent or guarantee that anyone will achieve the same or similar results.
4 Press Release: Digital Homeownership Platform Better Expands Title Product to Virginia, Further Developing Nationwide Adoption of One-Click Checkout for Real Estate Transactions