Real Estate

Low-fee, alternative models lead real estate on Inc. 5000

Team brokerages are also well represented in list of fast growing real estate firms

Low-fee, team brokerage and alternative models lead the 2021 Inc. 5000 rankings, mirroring the 2021 RealTrends 500 rankings. Some 68 fast growing real estate brokerage firms, teams and alternative models made the list. The average three-year revenue growth rate for ranked real estate firms was 311%.

Inc. 5000 Coverage | Housing Verticals

At the top of the real estate/alternative model category, at No. 56, was Big Block Realty, which ranked No. 160 by sides and No. 91 by volume in the RealTrends 500 (RT500). Big Block is a 100% commission model based in California.

United Real Estate Group, which is ranked No. 10 by sides and No. 16 by volume in the RT500 rankings, ranked No. 1,055 on the Inc. rankings. The low-fee brokerage, which built its own end-to-end tech platform, attributes a portion of their growth to two strategic acquisitions in the Nashville and Atlanta markets. “Our tech platform, called Bullseye, is an end-to-end agent and broker productivity platform. It’s also entirely cloud-based,” said Dan Duffy, CEO of United Real Estate Group.

How did Big Block, which ranked lower than United, end up ranking higher on the Inc. 5000? RealTrends only allows residential and does not include leases, lots, rentals, land or commercial numbers in its rankings.

Other low-fee models in the Inc. 5000 rankings include Realty ONE Group Affiliates (865), which has five brokerages ranked in the RT500 and 25 ranked in the RealTrends Nation’s Best, and 1st Class Real Estate (1,030), which is ranked No. 409 by sides in the RT500.

With new transactional platforms and firms backed by venture capital, those brokerage firms in the middle of the market are disappearing while low-cost brokerage models are increasing in size and numbers. High-end firms appear to be holding their own, but the undifferentiated middle is under enormous stress.

Two of RealTrends GameChangers and RT500 brokerage firms were included in the Inc. rankings. Lamacchia Realty (2,279) and RLAH Real Estate (3,336). GameChangers are chosen based on percentage growth in transaction sides between 2016 and 2020. Lamacchia was recently profiled by HousingWire in a feature about building the right tech stack for fast growing real estate brokerages.

Other RT500 brokerages ranked in the Inc. 5000 include Professional Realty Services International (2,116), Worth-Clark Realty (2,409), Matt Curtis Real Estate (2,729), Key Realty (3,624), JP and Associates Realtors (3,716), NextHome (4,025), Premiere Plus Realty Co. (4,080), HomeSmart International (4,608), Keller Williams Realty Capital District (4,861), Atlanta Communities Real Estate (4,919) and Rogers Healy and Associates Real Estate (4,945).

Alternative models

Alternative models featured discount brokerage Homie which ranked No. 305.

Real estate teams on the Inc. 5000

The Inc. 5000 rankings also includes real estate teams who were ranked in the RealTrends The Thousand (RT1000) and America’s Best. The highest ranked team in the Inc. 5000 was The D.J. and Lindsey Team Real Estate (1,103), which ranked No. 43 mega teams by transaction sides in the RT1000. The Mark Spain Team (2,521) is ranked No. 1 mega team by sides and No. 4 mega team by volume, showing a clear divergence from the Inc. 5000 data.

RealTrends independently verifies all production for agents and teams. The Inc. 500 does not distinguish between brokerages and teams.

The complete HousingWire list of the fastest growing real estate brokerage and alternative model real estate firms on the Inc. 5000 list can be found here:

Data aggregated from Inc. Magazine’s Inc. 5000 2021 program. Full ranking available on

The Inc. 5000 ranks America’s top private companies by median growth, total revenue and jobs added. To qualify, companies must have generated revenue by March 31, 2017 and made at least $100,000 in revenue that year, have a minimum revenue threshold of $2 million in 2020 and be privately held, based in the U.S. and independently owned. Companies submit their revenue figures, and Inc. asks for verification of both the 2017 and the 2020 numbers.

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