Hi I’m Michele, a homeowner and one of the founders of Doorsteps – an online platform that helps real estate professionals educate and guide their first-time homebuyers through the home-buying experience in a clear, comprehensive, and delightful way.
We are so close to releasing the new version of Doorsteps, so when the Geeky Girls invited us to write a guest post, we were really grateful to have the opportunity to share our story.
When we first started on this journey 12 months ago, we were determined to design a tool for agents that would give them buyers that were more educated, more organized and more confident. In particular, we were interested in empowering the first-time buyer – a very unique group of people that tend to need more support, more education and more time. We realize that empowerment might sound a little trite, but it’s central to our thesis: if you educate a homebuyer in a very real, tangible, clarifying way, it’s better for everyone. In other words, helping them understand exactly what they need to do, why, and how, to make the smartest possible decisions at every fork in the road.
Now you are probably thinking – so isn’t that the real estate agent’s job? And our answer would be YES. But after spending months dismantling the home-buying process, we realized that there was unnecessary complexity woven throughout the experience – for everyone. The journey itself had become bloated and clunky; and real estate professionals in particular needed to deal with more and more administrative, hand-holding, and coordination issues along the way – all of which took time and energy without increasing productivity or number of closings. And add to that the number of Gen Y buyers that are out there today – America’s largest generation. The average first-time homebuyer is 31 years old. And while we are not denying that real estate is still (and will be for the foreseeable future), a relationship business, expectations have changed. For good.
So, as a team of designers and engineers, we asked ourselves:
- Is it possible to use the web and great design to make buying a home happy and human (again)?
- Can we make first-time buyers feel totally empowered, enlightened and in control of their decisions?
- Can we unburden agents from the administration, coordination, and education so they can focus on great consultsmanship – which is where their biggest value lies?
So we started building Doorsteps – a shared workspace between agents and buyers.
In a nutshell, it’s a place for you to guide each buyer through the home-buying journey in streamlined but comprehensive and delightful way.
Every step your buyer needs to take (or choice they need to make) is thoughtfully explained – in unbiased, plain English – so there’s far less anxiety or confusion. We also let agents incorporate their own market-specific tips into each step, so they can highlight their deep, local expertise without having to explain the same things over and over to multiple buyers.
But we not only educate the buyer about what they need to do next, like get pre-approved or find a mortgage broker (with a choice to choose from their agent’s recommendations), but we also give them a tool to do exactly that, in the moment, and within the Doorsteps experience.
As they move through each step, their agent not only has oversight over where they are on the journey, but access to all the critical output and an increasingly richer buyer profile. Which means every conversation is productive, meaningful, and up-to-date.
And like a doctor offering a prescription, a Doorsteps-enabled agent can simply direct each buyer about which phases need to be completed between appointments, so there’s never any confusion or down time.
That’s a mouthful, and it already doesn’t tell the whole story. So please come find out for yourself. We are releasing a new version of Doorsteps on June 29th, and all agents that send me an email (with just the subject line: Doorsteps loves The Geeky Girls) by June 30th, will be signed up and will get a free 60-day membership to Doorsteps. You can of course sign up directly on the site, but if you do that before June 30th, you won’t get the special Geeky Girls discount!
So please, do come in!
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