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Rocket cautiously wades into iBuying

Analysts say the initiative could give the lender a new revenue stream in a purchase-heavy market

Jay-Farner-Quicken-Loans-HW
Rocket Companies CEO Jay Farner

When Rocket Companies announced in August that it would be dipping its toes in the iBuying space, the lender didn’t do so with its usual panache. There were no polished marketing promos or commercials featuring celebrities like Tracy Morgan. In fact, news that Rocket would be pushing into iBuying was barely a footnote in the August press release.

Rocket’s low-key entrance might be explained by the company not envisioning itself as becoming a true iBuyer: it will not be buying homes with the help of an algorithm, throwing a new coat of paint on the wall, and then reselling the home for a markup. In fact, Rocket has no interest in buying homes at all. Rocket, instead, would be simply integrating third-party iBuying services on its Rocket Homes platform.

The iBuying initiative is set to be launched sometime in the fourth quarter, though details have been sparse. Rocket declined to answer HousingWire’s questions about which iBuying companies it would be partnering with, the exact nature of its relationship with third-party iBuyers, or how it would generate money from the venture.

What the company has said is that iBuying will be lumped in with several other services on the company’s real estate platform, including “credit reporting, home search, the industry-leading ForSaleByOwner.com process, on-staff real estate agents, a nationwide network of trusted real estate professionals…along with direct connections to Rocket Mortgage.”

Rocket said its iBuying program will “provide a back-up offer” to sellers.

“Consumers who need to sell their house before buying another often lose out on their new dream home due to the need to make a contingency offer- meaning their deal hinges on closing the sale on their existing property,” Rocket said. “With the forthcoming program from Rocket Homes, these consumers will now have a guaranteed offer on their current house and can eliminate the need for contingency altogether.” …..Story continued on HousingWire.com

This article was originally published by HousingWire. The full article is available on HousingWire.com for HW+ Members.