A new “transparent offer platform” called Haus has just launched in California to serve the residential real estate market. The way it works is that all offers are submitted online. And once an offer has been confirmed, it – along with all of its terms – gets revealed to every other potential buyer. See image below.
I’ve seen a number of different iterations of this same idea, which tells me that this is a well-identified problem in the real estate market. Here’s a snippet from a recent TechCrunch article announcing Haus:
“We think the openness will create a more efficient market and that the number of offers and price will ultimately be dependent on demand,” said Haus GM Sarah Ham. “Bidding wars are a common, almost accepted, part of the real estate process today. But with our approach, buyers know where they stand. Buyers will know what they need to offer to make their offer competitive, but they also won’t negotiate against themselves.”
I completely agree that this is a problem that needs to be solved. It will create a more efficient marketplace. However, in this market, I suspect that the current information asymmetries largely benefit sellers, to the detriment of buyers. So I wonder if the supply-side of the marketplace will be willing to participate at scale. What’s really in it for them?
Side note: Haus is the latest project from Expa, which is a “startup studio” that works on its own ideas, as well as partners with other founders. I am very interested in this approach to creation because I think you have to try and make a lot of things if you want to do truly innovative things.