You can call a funny process locating real estate agents. On one hand, you want to deal with a professional with great negotiating skills, a proven track record, innate knowledge of local market, and much more. After all, selling or buying a home usually is a big deal, so it’s a lot of money at stake. On the other hand, almost all of us found last agent browsing online (maybe even swiped the number from the park bench). Can you imagine any other personal, large transaction in your life when you leave your destiny up to a stranger?
Enter HomeLight. You can spend hours combing through lots of agent bios, researching sales history, and learning online reviews of their client on multiple websites. And instead of that you can use the HomeLight’s Matching Engine which automatically analyzes more than 18 million client reviews and home sales to bring you the highest performing agents (top 5%). In just a few minutes, suitable agents will be screened based specific criteria that you choose, including whether you sell or buy, whether or not they have necessary skills and big experience, specialize in your area, and more.
All together, the HomeLight service claims can help you to find the perfect agent, saving your time and remaining completely free—no catches. Certainly, it’s not simple to beat free. But despite HomeLight will not cost you more than several minutes, does that still make them an optimal option for searching your next real estate agent? Are there any similar services? You have questions, so we’ll help you, uncovering some answers on this review.
Let’s look at how the service works.
The company describes it this way:
“The HomeLight is a leading service for searching objective agent performance data browsing online. We have spent years collecting, summarizing and normalizing historical data across hundreds and millions of transactions. With the unique data set, we use machine learning methods and statistical data analysis to predict the agent who will bring the most experience, negotiating power and expertise to client’s house transaction.”
After answering a few questions, HomeLight Matching Engine looks for and analyzes more than 18 million transactions since the year of 2009, along with about 200,000 brokerages and 2 million agents, all aimed at matching with a suitable agent. The Engine will look at as things as bios and educational background, recent listings that agent has completed, volume of the agent’s transactions for year, customer reviews from individuals which interacted with the agent, and more.
Then, the Matching Engine of the HomeLight filters the information into 5 different categories:
Sell or buy: Here, the Matching Engine filters results by historical expertise of the agent, whether selling or buying.
Location: In other words, the service looks for someone specializing in your area, or the area where you’re looking to buy. Here is how the company explains it: “Applying geo-distance analysis and spatial IP, we can target agents that have expertise within your neighborhood, city, and even real estate agents that know your street.”
Property Type: the service of HomeLight analyzes houses transaction data in order to identify agents’ expertise in exact type of clients’ property,” whether condominium, single family, multi-family, or more.
Price: Whoever agent you choose will be familiar with suitable price range. After all, it can be big differences in the needs of a first-time homeowner versus a luxury buyer.
Agent type: Finally, the service gonna make sure that personality of an agent matches needs of clients. For example, some people need a real estate agent that can spend lots of time with them, while someone might require a tough negotiator.
And finally, the Matching Engine learning algorithm will use “Bayesian statistical models that predict which agent is going to achieve the goal.” After that, the service will provide client a personalized list of agents across the best brokerages in his area.
It sounds like lots of technologies, isn’t it? How much will cost using HomeLight?
Is HomeLight Free?
If you selling or buying your house, then by all appearances, the service is really free to use it to connect you with agents.
If you are an estate agent, you’re able to obtain leads from the HomeLight with a referral fee of 25%, while other professionals (title companies, lenders, moving companies, general contractors, etc.) can promote through the company.
You need help using the service? The HomeLight claims to have a professional team of real estate concierges with experience for more than 50 years at (888) 998-1909.
Considering obvious usefulness of HomeLight and the fact that this is completely free, are clients over the moon about HomeLight?
What Do HomeLight’s Clients Say?
Though HomeLight was founded in 2012 by Drew Uher and it’s backed by great investors like, there was not lots of feedback about the HomeLight’s at the time of research.
Site RealtyBizNews.com wrote a review about their experience using the website of HomeLight (they did not reach out to suitable real estate agents). Overall, they liked the interface of the HomeLight service but they were on fence about the questions quantity they were asked. Also they received the same recommendations. It happened even after they had changed some of their criteria, though they decided that the HomeLight is the best conduit of seller-buyer-agent that they have ever seen.
Beside it, there were three closed HomeLight complaints at the BBB - Better Business Bureau, where HomeLight company had rating of A+. Of these, only two details, both of removing information of an agent from the database.
Is HomeLight a Shot in the Dark?
Like it was mentioned above, it’s not simple to beat free. Other words, giving HomeLight a try, you won’t make your bank account lighter, but also you will not be able of getting back the spent time.
Is HomeLight worth trying? That’s the thing only you have to decide. But considering the fact that they got more than 3 years experience in business and the HomeLight company is backed by industry giants, they can offer a more accurate, faster and easier way to connect with agents. Just you should remember that HomeLight serves only 38 U.S. markets currently, so you might have difficulty locating real estate agents in smaller markets.
Have you used HomeLight to find an agent? If the answer is yes, let’s do something with the lack of feedback. How? By writing and adding your own review to the conversation!