Opendoor, the well-funded San Francisco online real estate marketplace that buys and sells homes, is getting into mortgages, intensifying competition with Seattle rivals Zillow and Redfin.
Opendoor has spent the last 10 months building and refining its Home Loans program, and now it is sharing details for the first time. The company is starting with six markets in Arizona and Texas: Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, Houston, San Antonio, Phoenix and Tucson.
In a blog post, head of Opendoor Home Loans Nadia Aziz argues that the company is uniquely positioned to help people with mortgages. Opendoor has helped more than 50,000 customers buy and sell homes, and the company has learned that “customers value flexibility, simplicity and speed.”
“It takes us one step closer to providing an end-to-end experience where you can buy, sell or trade-in a home in just a few clicks,” Aziz wrote about Opendoor Home Loans.
One of Opendoor’s major selling points is that it will cut the time to secure financing in half. If Opendoor fails to close a loan by the scheduled date, it will credit $100 back to the buyer for every day of delay.
Opendoor, Redfin, Zillow and others all share a common goal: disrupting the stressful process of buying and selling houses. Each has approached it a different way, but in some ways they are coming to the same conclusion. To re-imagine how homes are bought and sold, the companies want to control every aspect of the process.
Mortgages are a big part of that push, as Opendoor’s Aziz notes that “financing is one of the most complicated and intimidating parts of a home purchase.” Zillow jumped into mortgages earlier this year as part of its pivot to focus the majority of its business on buying and selling homes. Redfin’s mortgages business is more than three years old.
Opendoor is one of the leaders in the push to disrupt real estate, and it has raised more than $1.3 billion in equity and $3 billion in debt over its lifetime. Opendoor is now buying and selling more than 3,500 homes per month in 20 markets across the U.S. The company aims to get to 50 markets by the end of 2020.
The company inked a surprising partnership with rival Redfin in July. The alliance lets users in Phoenix and Atlanta request an “instant offer” from Opendoor on Redfin’s website or mobile app to buy their house.