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Realtor.com operator Move Inc. is investing in Own Up — a lender matching service that helps homebuyers compare mortgage offers — and integrating the service into the popular listing portal.
“Own Up’s team brings deep mortgage expertise to the Realtor.com online experience,” Realtor.com CFO Bryan Charap said in a statement. “This relationship is a natural fit; together we’re able to expand upon our shared goal of helping Americans find and close on their dream homes.”
Own Up announced the Realtor.com partnership Wednesday, along with a $25 million funding round led by Brand Foundry Ventures, with participation by Move and existing investors Link Ventures and Listen Ventures.
Founded in 2016 by Patrick Boyaggi, Mike Tassone and Brent Shields, Own Up says it employs technology to simplify the home financing process, providing online tools that help consumers evaluate lenders, compare loan offers and obtain preapproval letters that can be updated on demand.
The funding round will allow Own Up to continue to build out its technology platform, expand its product offerings and invest in people, the company said.
“Realtor.com plays an essential role in the home search process for so many Americans and now we’ll be able to provide mortgage education and tools to comparison shop, boosting buyer confidence as they move through the process,” Boyaggi said in a statement.
Own Up — the “doing business as” name of RateGravity Inc. — is not a lender, but is licensed as a mortgage broker in 41 states and Washington, D.C. Boston-based Own Up sponsors 41 mortgage loan originators who work out of nine branch locations, according to the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System and Registry.
Realtor.com currently facilitates mortgage preapprovals powered by Mortgage Research Center LLC, better known as Veterans United Home Loans. Mortgage Research Center sponsors 1,721 mortgage loan originators and is licensed in all 50 states, according to the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System and Registry
“Veterans United has always been and will continue to be a very important partner for Realtor.com,” a Move spokesperson said in a statement provided to Inman. “We remain committed to Veterans United and its various divisions.”
Move is a subsidiary of News Corp., whose Australia-based global online real estate advertising company REA Group, last year acquired Mortgage Choice, an Australian mortgage broker, for $183 million, according to News Corp.’s latest annual report.
In 2019, News Corp.’s sister company Fox Corp. paid $265 million for a majority stake in Credible Labs Inc., a consumer finance marketplace that provides prequalified rates from multiple financial institutions for student loans, personal loans and mortgages.
Realtor.com rival Zillow’s mortgage segment, which includes a lead generation marketplace and in-house lender Zillow Home Loans, is “consistently unprofitable” with Zillow spending $1.85 for every $1 in mortgage revenue during the first half of 2022, according to a recent analysis by industry expert Mike DelPrete
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