The real estate hunting platform Open Listings has unveiled a new iPhone app.
The company, which launched in 2015, functions as an online directory of residential properties in which users can make offers directly online without an agent (although it will connect customers with an agent if they want).
Acting as a buyer’s agent, Open Listings refunds buyers 50 percent of the commission at close. The site presently boasts 100,515 listings but only in the states of California, Texas, and Washington. It also lets prospective buyers sign up to receive email alerts for new listings and gives them a customized feed of new listings that match their criteria when they look at the website or app.
Last year, Open Listings raised $6.5 million in Series A funding led by Matrix Partners.
The new app for Apple’s iOS devices (iPhone and iPad) features homes that are listed on the startup’s site, as well as information such as property reports and neighborhood data. While Open Listings formerly had a simple iOS app that allowed users to view the homes, the new version is more closely tailored to what is available on the site.
“Our buyers are increasingly dependent on mobile services,” Judd Schoenholtz, Open Listings’ CEO and co-founder, told Inman in an email. “[…] We’re always thinking of ways to make homebuying, which can be stressful and confusing at times, easy.”
The new app format is, according to the company, supposed to make searching for homes and making offers more convenient on a smaller screen. The app has four primary features: shop (for viewing homes), visit (for booking house tours), offer (for making an offer) and close (for tracking offer progress).
Schoenholtz also said that Open Listings decided to update the app after clients said they wanted to see more of the site’s features available on a phone.
“There are a ton of moments when you’re house hunting where having an app helps, whether you’re just sitting on your couch and getting a real-time update on a place you’ve favorited, or you’re trying to meet a tight offer deadline on a house you’ve just seen,” said Schoenholtz, claiming that theirs is one of the only real estate apps in which buyers can make an offer directly from a phone.
The app is now available in the Apple App store. As for those with Google Android smartphones (including Samsung Galaxy phones running Android), take heart: Schoenholtz told Inman that Open Listings was working on an updated Android app and it should be available in the summer of 2018.