Opendoor, the oldest and best-known dedicated iBuyer in the United States, announced Tuesday that it plans to expand into St. Louis, Missouri, as well as multiple cities in the Mountain West.
The expansion into Salt Lake City, Utah, and Boise, Idaho — both major hubs in the Rocky Mountain region — will take place later this year, according to a statement from Opendoor. The company will then begin making cash offers on homes in the St. Louis area in “early 2020.”
Opendoor’s statement also mentions that the company is currently hiring, and looking for construction partners, in all three new cities.
Thanks to a steady pattern of geographic expansion, Opendoor now operates in 20 markets across the U.S. Many of those markets, such as Phoenix and Atlanta, are iBuying hotspots that are also well-covered by other companies such as Offerpad, Redfin or Zillow — the latter two of which have growing iBuying programs in addition to other products.
However, Opendoor has also pushed into some metro areas, such as Los Angeles, which are slightly more complicated because they include a significant number of homes that are older, more expensive or otherwise less conventional than those typically targeted by iBuyers.
Last week, Opendoor also announced it will start making cash offers on behalf of buyers, marking a significant new service for a company that had previously focused its energies on helping sellers.
Asked why Opendoor choose Salt Lake City, Boise and St. Louis, a company spokesperson told Inman that “we evaluate by looking at an area’s growth potential, fundamentals, demographics and housing stock.”
“These are all sizable, growing markets, so we’ve just been assessing the right moment to launch,” the spokesperson added.
Boise and Salt Lake City in particular have seen both population and housing prices grow in recent years. The cities have additionally benefited from an influx of coastal Americans priced out of cities like San Francisco and Seattle.
Those trends recently helped make Boise one of the so-called “hottest” areas for home sales in the U.S., and allowed Salt Lake City to post the fastest growth of “creative class” jobs — or high-skilled, knowledge-based jobs that tend to pay well — in the nation.
Those conditions would presumably be attractive to Opendoor, which benefits from continued housing demand and price appreciation as it buys houses, does basic renovations, then attempts to sell them at a profit.
In addition to announcing a three-city expansion, Opendoor also said Tuesday it “recently hit a major milestone.”
“We’ve helped more than 50,000 customers buy or sell homes on their timeline,” the company said in a statement, “giving them back many hours of time and allowing them to move on to their next chapter, hassle-free.”