The traditional process of buying and selling single-family investment properties can be described as arduous at best. On the seller side, one sticking point in this chain has always been the fact that sellers have had to wait until their current tenants moved out to sell their properties to the next buyer, leading to the unpleasant but all-too-common outcome of losing income on a vacant space. On the buyer side, the process of purchasing a property is often so complex and obfuscated that buyers frequently lack much of the information they need to determine whether they’re making a wise investment or not. And while other industries have already looked to technology for help revamping broken processes, the residential real estate industry is only just beginning to follow suit.
Recognizing that the opacity of buying and selling properties is a major pain point for residential real estate investing, a company called Roofstock has now created an online marketplace dedicated specifically to buying and selling single-family rental homes. Roofstock provides a platform that makes the process of investing in residential real estate properties seamless, immediate, and beneficial to both the buyer and the seller.
When using Roofstock, sellers do not have to wait to sell until their tenants move out. Additionally, through the Roofstock platform, buyers are provided with access to a professionally-managed inventory of leased and certified homes. Properties typically generate cash flow immediately, and buyers are fully aware of their potential for appreciation over time. Roofstock also offers its users analytics and diligence information, so that investors can compare properties before making a final purchasing decision. Once this decision is made, Roofstock generates and electronically sends all of the contracts and documents needed to close to all involved parties.
The company was created by three single-family rental home investors who were looking for a way to push the real estate industry into the 21st century. At it’s core, Roofstock is important for two main reasons: it is removing the roadblocks that investors have traditionally had to face due to antiquated systems, and it is connecting local markets with investors from around the world. Another appealing aspect of this platform is that it partners with unbiased third party companies to inspect and certify all homes in its marketplace, and is focused on transparency, liquidity, and efficiency when buying and selling its leased rental properties, improving the experience for everyone.
Roofstock has already closed two rounds of funding with backing from some major players in the investing space, including StubHub and Salesforce. And since there are still many more ways that the real estate industry can be disrupted by technology, there’s tremendous room for this company, and others like it, to grow.