There are dozens of places to look for homes online, and plenty of other places to look for information about those homes. One local app developer decided to put all that data under one shiny new roof.
“Consumers find their homes online today, that’s old news,” said Gary Schultz, founder of the web-based platform Zeppidy. “Then the question is, can I get all the information I need to make a decision about whether I want to live in an area?”
Schultz, based in Lake Oswego, Ore., started Zeppidy to streamline home buying and selling (and, as a business, make some money doing so). Now in its beta version, Zeppidy is available for Oregon and Southwest Washington before it rolls out to a national audience, likely this fall.
The company pushes its platform as “a comprehensive approach for agents and consumers to navigate the entire process, from search or listing to closing.”
Zeppidy is free for buyers and free of advertisements, getting its revenue from agent subscriptions and individual seller fees.
The word on the site is already getting out for Clark County, as the three most recently listed homes on zeppidy.com on Wednesday afternoon were in Vancouver.
Clicking through one of the homes, you can find Census-derived neighborhood demographics, school info, crime rate, an interactive map of local shops and services, a drive-time calculator and local market data. The database is searchable by zip code, school and hundreds of other variables.
“If you think about what the internet has helped us do in other industries … this industry hasn’t been matured in terms of getting all the data,” Schultz said. “There’s a lot of pieces in the process, and no company has focused on the process yet. That’s what we’re focused on: How do we make that process faster.”
The site also sets up open houses, grouping properties by date and time — and including Google Maps directions that can be sent to your phone — to make house-hunting easier.
“The open house concept is convenient for buyers, but the challenge is they’re all ad hoc, and they’re not working together,” Schultz said. “What we tried to do is make it more convenient.”
For brokers, Zeppidy becomes a work platform that provides for document sharing and appointment setting — much like Google’s suite of programs but for residential real estate.
“This is just an incredible tool. If I were a real estate agent, everything’s at my fingertips,” Schultz said. “It’s meant to ultimately sell the house faster.”
Subscriptions for agents start at $129 a month, with options for brokerages to adapt the software for their firms. Properties can be listed by individual sellers for $600 plus a 2.5 percent commission. Schultz said “DIY sellers,” who long have had to work outside the traditional marketplace, now have full access to a professional network.
He said Zeppidy is more than helping people find the right home, but also finding the right people in the process.
“It’s a win-win-win — buyers, sellers, brokers. It connects all three.”