fivewalls is a free service that matches home buyers and sellers with top REALTORS® from leading local brokerages. We provide home buyers and sellers access to agents’ verified reviews, past transaction data, recently sold homes and personality videos. The fivewalls team is here to ensure you are happy and confident in the real estate agent you work with and will work with you until you are satisfied.
For example here is one of the videos featuring GTA Real Estate agent Naz Sala:
Who started the company? Do you / team members have a tech background?
fivewalls Realty, Brokerage was founded by Paul Hayman in 2014 and has just launched in Toronto. During the 2008 to 2012 housing crisis in the USA, Paul served as the USA Chairman of the Think Tank for Single Family Residential Rentals. He also founded Tenant Access which, within one year of founding the company became one of the largest single-family residential property management companies in America. In addition to his professional life at TFC, Paul served as the Entrepreneur in Residence at Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario.
We also have a tech team of two developers who innovate and create features that make it faster for users to search for the right agent. From time to time, we bring in consultants for select projects to enhance user experience.
How are you being financed?
Currently we are financed by private investors.
What do you think will be / is a big obstacle to overcome?
Our biggest obstacle to overcome is that many home buyers and sellers don’t do enough research when finding a real estate agent. Many will pick their neighbor or someone easily accessible which may not always result in the best fit for them. We will have to educate consumers about the value of researching and working with an agent who has the expertise they need according to property type, location and budget.
How do you go about finding good developers / IT guys for your company?
Since we are a start-up we can offer many unique perks such as flexible hours and remote work locations for our employees. Our current developers love what we are trying to achieve and the culture we have within the company. Everyone gets to voice their opinion and is included in every major decision the company makes.
Who is your biggest competition?
Our biggest competition is personal agent referrals. Many home buyers and sellers will ask friends and family for referrals of real estate agents. The problem with using an agent who has been referred to you by a friend is that they may not be a good fit for your exact needs. Not every agent serves the same areas and has access to the same marketing tools that you need to sell a condo or detached home, for example.
How are you intending on taking your company to million dollars in
revenues? In what markets?
fivewalls currently operates in the Greater Toronto area, Kitchener, Guelph and London. Our intention is to first master the Toronto markets to ensure our processes are successful before we expand into the other large markets in Canada.
What is the big lesson you've learned (success or failure) with this project.
The biggest lesson that we have learned (so far) is that millennials pick a real estate agent based on data rather than simply the agents’ personality. When we first created this model we focused more on the personality of the agent rather than providing details about their skills and experience. We have evolved over the past few years to include more data from the real estate agent.