There’s a lot of anxiety around buying and selling a home, from obtaining a loan to selecting the right real estate agent and navigating the paperwork required to call a home-sweet-home your own. Kirkland-based Faira is out to disrupt that system, and put the power of the process back into the hands of the buyers and sellers.
Faira CEO Kamal Jain said that what is now a complex process doesn’t need to be complex. And he’s clear that Faira isn’t out to make realtors obsolete. His main competitor is complexity.
“It’s not very hard to sell homes, it’s hard because you have to follow a procedure designed for realtors. a lot of things that realtors do in the process are not at all necessary,” Jain said. “The current process is so complex and it need not be. It is intentionally made complex… which makes it more expensive, so we have removed all the complexity in the purchase and sale decision for a home.”
“If you want to sell your home, you want your buyer to be more informed and confident, but realtors don’t do that, they do the opposite. They try to make buyers less informed and hide information about the home.” said CEO Kamal Jain. “We are doing what’s necessary to make buyers more informed and confident so they can make higher offers.”
Home owners are able to put their home on the market through Faira’s platform free of charge. The company doesn’t take a commission on the sale, but instead takes a fee from the buyer when a sale closes.
“We provide a lot of information to the buyer, such as an inspection report up front, and empower them to make an online offer with or without realtors. If they make an offer without realtors, they have 3-percent lower price,” Jain said.
Jain founded the company in July 2015, and Faira completed its first test-sale in October. Once the sale was complete, the platform was opened to outside listings. Faira has facilitated nine home sales so far and is involved in several more coming up.
Faira still relies of buying agents to bring potential buyers to its marketplace, which Jain estimates received nearly as many Seattle-area leads in January as Redfin. “It shows the market is liking our model which is simplified and economical,” Jain said.
Next up for the startup is getting the word out about the platform.
“Fear, uncertainty, and doubt is created in the market so people are dependent upon expensive middle men,” Jain said, “We are trying to educate as much as possible to tell the market that all this cost is not necessary. these costs can be saved.”
Editor’s note: This article has been updated to add clarity to Kamal Jain’s comments.