Following the recent trend of real estate and mortgage link-ups, Quicken has launched “Rocket Homes” to fill in the real estate gap and simultaneously compete with the likes of Zillow and Redfin.
The company actually isn’t new, but is a rebrand of Rock Holding Inc.’s In-House Realty, aligning it with its very popular and successful Rocket Mortgage home loan lending unit.
In-House Realty Becomes Rocket Homes
- The company has been around for more than 10 years
- Rebranding to align with other Quicken brands
- Already one of the nation’s largest real estate referral networks
- With more than 25,000 agents in nearly every neighborhood nationwide
In-House Realty, now Rocket Homes, has been around for more than a decade, and is actually one of the largest real estate referral networks.
They’ve already helped some 500,000 clients buy and sell homes via the assistance of 25,000+ licensed real estate agents.
Now they want to go a step further by creating a seamless home buying experience from start to finish that combines the online home search, real estate agent selection, and the mortgage process.
Together, the hope is to create a one-stop shopping experience for home buyers who can find a home via the Rocket Homes portal and then get financing for their home purchase via Quicken Loans, which will be the preferred lender.
On the consumer side of things, Rocket Homes will probably look similar to Zillow, with a home search feature and tons of information on properties like number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage, and sales price.
Additionally, the site will provide more in-depth market trends, housing supply, and “level of demand” in a given area the prospective buyer might be interested in.
Each listing also has a section regarding nearby schools, a safety report, and a built-in mortgage calculator from Quicken’s Rocket Mortgage.
You can even see what the neighbors are like in terms of how much they make, the level of education they achieved, how old they are, if they rent or own, and the household structure (e.g. single or married with kids).
As to whether we’ll see a Rockestimate remains to be seen, but I wouldn’t rule out some sort of automated valuation model (AVM) at some point in the future since people seem to love them.
At the moment, the home search feature is only available in Michigan, but the plan is to expand to 10 additional states by the end of this year, and a full nationwide rollout by mid-2019.
In other words, there’s a new player in town Zillow, so be warned. Perhaps Zillow’s foray into the mortgage lending space is being met with an equal and opposite action on Quicken’s part.
Real Estate Agents Can Partner with Rocket Home for Seamless Experience
- Rocket Homes Partner Network links agents with home buyers and sellers
- Referrals come mortgage approved so there’s no question about eligibility
- Also have verified purchase timeframe and full contact info
- Leads are exclusive, no upfront fees, and dedicated support provided from referral-to-close
On the business side of things, real estate agents can partner with Rocket Homes to gain access to prospective home buyers and sellers in their area, similar to Purplebricks.
The company’s referral network has some key advantages over the competition, namely the fact that the borrower comes mortgage approved.
That’s right, real estate agents shouldn’t have to worry about whether their potential client is actually able to qualify for a mortgage.
With Quicken as the preferred lender, those details should already be ironed out. It fits nicely with my recent post about looking for a mortgage before searching for a home.
The result should be better qualified prospects and less wheel spinning. Of course, agents have to be top notch too, with an average rating of at least 4.5 out of 5 stars from past clients.
And a minimum of five closed homes in the last 12 months and no less than 10 closed homes in their career.
It’s abundantly clear that the mortgage market is becoming decidedly purchase loan driven, and this is yet another public move that proves that.
We’re also seeing a more integral approach where companies want to control more of the real estate process, which has always been quite fragmented with lots of moving parts.
The hope is to provide a better consumer experience when it comes to buying and selling properties, while also boosting profits for the one entity able to be most involved.
In the future, you might work with just one company from start to finish, instead of working with independent real estate agents, lenders, title and escrow companies, and so on.