There’s a real estate tech company based in my hometown Seattle that I’m a longtime fan of.
No, I’m not referring to that industry tech titan I formerly worked for. Nor am I referring to a certain billion dollar tech-enabled brokerage, with a red logo.
I’m specifically referring to CityBldr.
They figure out the highest and best use of any property or parcel of land. They operate as a commercial real estate brokerage, and broker land deals.
On the consumer side, their product is pretty simple. Fill out your address, and receive an estimate for what your home would be worth to a developer. They generate a lot of home seller leads, and refer them to other agents.
Peel back the curtain, and there is some incredible software and AI behind the scenes. Their software can tell you that a parking garage and an adjacent dilapidated warehouse could be worth 75% more if they were sold together rather than individually, as an example.
More recently, they announced their plans to be a (differentiated) iBuyer. They aren’t competing with Opendoor, Zillow, and Offerpad directly, because they are targeting homes that can be converted into multi-family. A home may be worth $750,000 to a buyer, but $1,100,000 to a real estate developer. CityBldr is the way sellers will find that out.
It’s not a surprise cities are not well optimized. There’s a long term play to be made to help urban planners improve their respective cities all over the globe. Hence, their tag line of “We build smart cities”.
My prediction: CityBldr is one of the next home runs we’ll see in the built world sector. I could not be more excited to watch their growth over the next few years, and am thrilled that I’ll have somewhat of a front row seat given their HQ are here in Seattle.
I’ve known their co-founder and CEO, Bryan Copley, for a number of years. He’s a bold entrepreneur with a massive vision, and huge ambition. We’re fortunate to have him as a founding member of the Geek Estate Mastermind. In fact, he was literally the very first member to setup his recurring Paypal payment profile, so I’m eternally grateful for his support. I had the pleasure to ask him a few questions to dig more into their recent work and where he sees the industry heading.
What is CityBldr, and why did you start it?
CityBldr connects buyers and sellers of underutilized property. We started when we realized that the market was commonly mispricing underutilized real estate.
What real estate technology trends or products are you most excited about?
Smart cities and construction tech. Both hold immense potential to make cities more functional, sustainable and affordable.
What was the fundraising process like?
Formal speed dating followed by thorough diligence. It’s an intense but necessary process that requires focus and stamina.
What are two of CityBldr’s business goals for 2019?
Close $500M of deals (brokerage and acquisition) and build a pipeline of 10,000 new homes.
What do you like about being a Geek Estate Mastermind member?
The deep dives into complex industry questions and challenges and the curated community. There’s not another real estate-focused community like it.
Interested in joining a community of the world’s most innovative and diverse real estate creatives, doers, and pioneers?