Based in Perth, Realty Assist hopes that its online platform will help address some of the financial challenges facing the real estate industry.
The direct experience of cash flow obstacles in residential real estate spaces inspired Sam Rettke’s latest venture, RealtyAssist Australia.
During his career in the real estate industry, Rettke has worked with many companies in this sector, including REMAX Australia, and with BGC Australia and Stockland in residential and land space.
Most recently, Rettke was the head of the UK-based real estate business Purplebricks.
Withdrawing from the Australian market in 2019, Rettke has begun to reassess the internal workings of the process of managing real estate transactions.
“That was what gave me an idea,” Rettke said. Business news..
“They were probably here at the wrong time in the market, because their model was starting to gain momentum … because they were prepaying marketing funds and prepaying agents.”
Pre-financing will support Realty Assist, which began in June 2020, to complete the initial seed investment round with a $ 3 million pre-valuation.
Rettke co-founded Realty Assist with local entrepreneur Peter Wall, a partner of Perth-based law firm Steinepreis Paganin and part-time chairman of the digital equity capital markets platform Sharequity.
The duo likens FinTech’s real estate platform to the afterpay premise of “buy now and pay later.”
Realty Assist acts as a caching model in the micro-lending space, giving agents, homeowners and lessors access to the funds that Rettke said will take months to clear.
“After all, it’s [solving] Cash flow “.
“Agencies take risks and bear the costs themselves, which puts them in a painful place in terms of cash flow.
“If you’re a realtor, it’s frustrating to have to wait for a consignment. If you’re selling your home, it’s frustrating that you can’t give your home the real estate marketing it deserves, and If you rent a house, it’s as frustrating as some institutions have to come up with money to cover bonds [can] The release will take 3 weeks.
“We support our clients and agencies. We are in our favor with each other.”
The online platform also acts as a payment aggregator, processing agency accounts receivable and streamlining standard manual management processes.
Realty Assist aims to address three issues:
• BondCollect provides tenants with prepaid funds for expenses related to moving into a rental property, including bonds, pet bonds and prepaid rent.
• VPACollect allows sellers to later pay Vendor Paid Advertising (VPA) to run businesses up to $ 30,000 for marketing, improvement, repair, and other costs associated with real estate sales campaigns. ..And
• CommCollect provides agents with timely access to commissions through invoice factoring arrangements, rather than waiting for the commissions to clear for the standard months.
Agents need to be RealtyAssist members to access funds, and Rettke said the group has more than 500 members using a platform that was processing about 100-150 transactions daily. ..
“They log in to our portal and type in the client details [home seller or tenant], The client can receive a request for funds and choose to pay now or later, “he said.
“The agency does not pay us a membership fee, the vendor [or renter] Will pay us interest. ”
“Therefore, the agency is not in a risky position. We take all risks.”
Rettke said interest was charged at different rates depending on the Realty Assist service, which was generally higher than a typical lender (bank) but usually cheaper than a credit card or personal loan. It was.
One of the main benefits of the platform was the speed of loan approval.
He said the review process was primarily carried out by realtors through their own standard procedures such as rental inquiries.
The model has proven to be successful so far. To date, Rettke has stated that Realty Assist has a non-performing loan ratio of 0%.
While headquartered in Western Australia, the platform has been used nationwide and is made up of agents from Harcourts, LJ Hooker, REMAX and The Agency.
Innovation is the group’s ongoing focus, planning machine learning and artificial intelligence research in transactional space, including the relationship between advertising costs and listing time, and the provision of quantifiable data on selling prices, Rettke said. I said that I am doing it.
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