Real estate is a market that’s full of inefficiencies, headaches, and price gouging. Thankfully, there are a handful of startups looking to fix it, one of which is Seattle-based Redfin.
Today the company — which has proven to be so disruptive that angry real estate professionals were harassing the startup in its earlier days — has just raised another $14.8 million for its quest to turn the industry on its head, saving both buyers and sellers money in the process.
The round was led by Globespan Capital Partners, with participation from previous investors Madrona Venture Group, Vulcan Capital, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, and Greylock Partners. This round brings Refin’s total funding to nearly $46 million (its last round was a $10 million Series D in November 2009). As part of the deal, Globespan’s Managing Director Venky Ganesan will join Redfin’s Board.
Redfin says that since the company launched back in 2006, its users have purchased or sold more than $6 billion in homes, with an average savings of more than $7,000 per transaction. In aggregate, Redfin has saved users $85 million.
Some other promising stats: the company says that 97% of past users would recommend the site to friends. Most users are buying and selling houses for the first time (i.e. they’re fairly young), but the company is also seeing more traction with customers over 45, who represent the company’s fastest-growing customer segment (the company didn’t say this, but I’d guess that the average transaction price increases with age).
Redfin is an online real estate company that provides real estate search and brokerage services. Redfin uses an interesting combination of online real estate search and access to live agents. They employ their agents so they can better control customer satisfaction; traditional brokerage firms license their name to independent agents. Redfin claims to save homebuyers on average $7,500 by reimbursing roughly 1/2 of the buy-side real estate fee directly on closing. Redfin also pays bonuses to agents when they...