Real Estate

Realogy and HomeAdvisor announce iBuyer alternative to help sellers upgrade homes

Sellers can fix up properties and repay at the closing table

Realogy, the largest owner of U.S. real estate brokerages, is teaming up with HomeAdvisor, the online service marketplace that bought Angie's List in 2017, on a home improvement program they’re calling RealVitalize. 

It’s an option Realogy’s 50,000-plus agents can offer sellers with homes that need fixing-up who might otherwise be tempted to turn to iBuyers that purchase properties “as-is.” 

People who list properties for sale can make non-structural home improvements and repairs using a professional from the HomeAdvisor network and the brokerage will cover the upfront costs. The seller pays for the work, with no interest charges, when the property sale closes or the listing expires.

There are no extra fees to participate in the program and no minimum listing price, the companies said in a joint statement. Available projects include handyman services, painting, kitchen and bathroom upgrades, staging, and the purchase and installation of new appliances.

"Selling a home is a major life event where homeowners frequently need help finding home services and home service professionals," said Brandon Ridenour, CEO of HomeAdvisor’s parent company, ANGI Homeservices

Participants get a dedicated HomeAdvisor project consultant to help decide on the services needed to prepare the home for listing, he said. 

“HomeAdvisor will help manage projects from start to finish, finding appointment times that work conveniently within the homeowner's schedule,” according to the companies’ statement.

The pilot program launched in Columbus, Ohio, Denver, Colorado, and the Orlando and Tampa, Florida, areas with a national roll-out planned later this year, the companies said.

This is the second major partnership Realogy has announced in the last two months. At the end of July, Realogy and Amazon, the world's largest retailer, unveiled a program that matches homebuyers with real estate agents. 

Potential buyers go through their Amazon account to click on the TurnKey program, put in details about the size, price and location of the home they want to buy, and are then matched with one of Realogy’s agents. In return, customers get up to $5,000 of Amazon products and assistance called a “Move-In Benefit,” which includes help with chores and product installation through a division of the retailer called Amazon Home Services.

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