Where Real Estate Gets Its Dirt

Z acquires FUB for $400M

Zillow acquires CRM Follow Up Boss, super app ‘mission’ ongoing

“A CRM makes sense for Zillow. The acquisition demonstrates that the evolving proptech remains on a path to become an increasingly influential presence in the residential real estate industry with consumers and agents.

It has taken on a number of software brands of late, starting with ShowingTime in early 2021, which became the basis for ShowingTime+, an umbrella brand under which a litany of agent-oriented marketing services come to rest, such as Listing Showcase and Aryeo, a marketing media management solution which it scooped up in August.

Follow Up Boss will not be part of ShowingTime+, Zillow President Susan Daimler told Inman.”

Craig Rowe for Inman News

Congrats to Dan and his team. Follow Up Boss is all about culture. I think it’s smart not to roll them in to the ShowingTime+ team. Also, talk about timing….

Mosaik, the future is now

One of the best things about publishing this blog for so long I (16 years baby!) is that a lot of early founders find me and I get to hear the ideas they are working on and see what they are building.  Sometimes they are looking for advice, or maybe an introduction.  Which I’m always happy to provide if I can.

In the past (I would say my generation) the typical real estate software vendor was a developer and maybe their spouse was a real estate agent or maybe he/she got frustrated buying or selling their home.  They had an itch to scratch.  Whether it was helping their spouse or themselves.  So they made something.  Maybe a small software program that managed  contacts (it always starts with a CRM, doesn’t it?) They bootstrapped their company.  The spouse would start using the software, maybe the broker noticed and asked if other agents in the office could use it, fast forward 3 years, and a company is born.

Nowadays typically I see young founders with funding from VC firms or other outside sources and they have ideas about some level of disruption of real estate.  Or they see the quality of some software applications and think that they can do better.  The biggest difference is the shear confidence, ambition and smarts these new generation of vendors have.   As a bonus they really have great taste in software.

Enter Sheila Reddy.  Sheila is the founder and CEO of Mosaik.  Sheila describes Mosaik as the “operating platform for agents, teams and brokerages”.  In the parlance of the broker/teams software world I would call this an “end to end platform”.  Due to this approach Mosaik really does a great job of focusing on the entire client experience.  Craig Rowe at Inman News did a really great review of the product you can read here.

Sheila came from the healthcare industry and saw a few parallels in software design/quality for the real estate industry.   She knew it could be better.  And to say Mosaik is ambitious is an understatement.  MLS data?  Yup.  Form integration.  Of course.  AI? Duh!  Client collaboration?  Absolutely. Schedule Showings? You betcha! Native mobile app? We got you!

Framing all this functionality is a beautiful and simple UI.  The biggest challenge she has is just the sheer magnitude of the feature set.  As someone who has always favored small simple “it does one thing and it does it well” type of software applications I am impressed with what she and her team has created.

The industry needs more founders like Shelia.  Their ambition, drive and optimism is just what the doctor ordered. If you are brokerage or a team you should check it out, the video on her website alone is worth the watch.

The MLS™/CLAW and RentBase Announce Partnership

The MLS™/CLAW and RentBase Announce Partnership to Streamline Rental Leasing Process for 18,000 Southern California MLS Agents

“We’re thrilled to partner with RentBase and extend its rental management services to our many agents and brokers,” said Annie Ives, CEO of The MLS/CLAW. “Rentals have become increasingly important in today’s market, but there is a lack of efficiency and transparency in the rental market. RentBase will help our agents overcome these barriers by managing and nurturing all their rental data and transactions, and converting renter leads to home sales.”

Another tool/solution I written about a lot is ways for agents to expand their business away from just homes for purchase to rental and property management. I think today’s real estate agent should be focused on “housing” not just one sliver of that pie.

There are many good tools in this space. I missed this press release from last month. RentBase caught my eye about a year ago. They are basically a CRM for rental leads and some other features. Noaam Blum is just the kind of founder I like, someone who built something that scratched his own itch. Check ’em out.

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