Former eBay Employees Launch Startup, Disrupt Real Estate
Former eBay employee, Kamal Jain, was frustrated with the home buying process that he decided to change the industry. Three years ago, Kamal made an offer on a home in Bellevue. It had a small creek in the backyard and he imagined himself spending countless hours enjoying it while pondering economic theory and inventing new business models. The creek was important to him and he was willing to pay for it. He made an offer above asking and hoped for good news.
Faira CEO Kamal Jain designed business models for eBay before founding Faira. He is also an Affiliated Professor of Computer Science at the University of Washington.
But the news he received was not what he’d hoped and he lost the home. Weeks later, when he researched the home’s sale price he found it was far below what he was willing to pay. If he’d had the chance to submit a counter offer, he would have offered more and been happy in the home he really wanted. The seller could have made thousands more on the sale.
Instead, both parties lost.
How could he fairly compete when he didn’t know the other offers? Why wasn't he given any feedback before the sellers accepted another offer? The lack of communication did not benefit the sellers either. Jain felt the home buying experience was unfair, too costly and resulted too often in regret. He also knew that technology could help. In many situations, it may not be possible for a human agent to timely respond to each buyer, but software technology always can.
After years of designing business models for the internet at eBay, Jain founded Faira with fellow eBay alumni, Eduardo Oliveira. The goal was simple: improve the antiquated process, so buyers and sellers can get a better deal.
“We designed Faira to eliminate regret. The regret you feel when you pay too much or don’t offer enough on the home you want. It is a powerful emotion made worse when you don’t have the information needed to make a smart decision,” says Jain. “By increasing transparency, lowering costs and leveraging technology to guide the transaction, Faira is creating a better experience for everyone.”
Since its launch last October, Faira has sold over 100 homes and is quickly outgrowing its small Kirkland office.
“The article in the Seattle Times got our business off and running. Since then, there’s been no slowing down. Our customers are happy - so happy in fact that some have asked to invest and even join our team.”
Now that Faira’s free service for home sellers is gaining traction in Seattle, what’s next?
“Buyers are struggling in the Seattle market,” says Jain. “We want to help buyers by giving them the full 3% agent commission back at closing. On a $500,000 home, that's $15,000 back to you!"
Faira Offer Assist is available now to buyers who want to make a stronger offer on any home in the Seattle area.
“No one else in the industry is doing anything like this. We feel it’s worth it to help buyers realize their dream of home ownership.”
Sellers: To sell your home with Faira at no cost go to http://www.faira.com
Buyers: To use Faira Offer Assist to get a full commission refund go to http://www.faira.com/offer-assist
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