Opendoor’s new ‘Trade-In’ lets you buy and sell a home instantly

Exceptionally well-funded startup aims to solve big homebuyer problem
  • Homeowners are supposed to be able to use "Trade-In" to schedule a time to sell their home to Opendoor and buy a new one on the same day.
  • The service, which makes 'instant offers' to sellers, can benefit a buyer the most if she uses Opendoor's preferred lender and purchases a home used by Opendoor.
  • Well under 2 years old, Opendoor has raised $110 million. It bought 500 homes in its first year.

One big hurdle for homebuyers is that they often have to sell the home they live in before they can purchase a new one. Opendoor, an exceptionally well-funded startup that makes "instant offers" on homes and then flips the properties of sellers who accept the offers, has unveiled a service designed to solve the problem. Opendoor's "Trade-In" lets homeowners sell their current home to Opendoor and buy a new home simultaneously. Sellers can pick a date when they can both close on the sale of their home to Opendoor and complete the purchase of a new one. Headquartered in San Francisco, Opendoor is basically a tech-turbocharged home flipper. (CEO Eric Wu prefers the label "re-saler," since, unlike many home flippers, Opendoor doesn't target homeowners in a bind, he says.) The startup uses automated valuation models (AVMs) to make "instant offers" on homes to sellers who ask for them, buys properties from sellers who accept those offers in a matter of days...