An Interview with inhaus co-Founders Avantika (AV) Shahi and Lorraine Getz
The post is part of a sponsored campaign for inhaus: An online real estate marketplace that puts money back in your pocket.
MomsLA was founded by working Moms and we are always interested in entrepreneurial women and their stories of how they started their companies.
We recently were introduced to Avantika (AV) Shahi and Lorraine Getz, the co-Founders of inhaus, a new startup launching soon, and we wanted to find out more about them and about their company.
To celebrate the launch of inhaus.io, they are partnering with Murchison-Hume, chic, natural, non-toxic cleaning products to host a fabulous giveaway. The sweepstakes will run from 4/19/17 to 5/17/2017. Three grand prize winners will be randomly selected and receive a $250 Murchison Hume digital gift card and $250 Parachute Home digital gift card. Contest details are at the bottom of the post. And now, on to the interview with Shahi and Getz!
Where did the idea come from for inhaus?
In the past, consumers were reliant on real estate agents for access to new homes on the market. Real estate agents had to research available homes on the market, make appointments to view the homes, drive their clients to the appointments and then do all the paperwork and negotiations on their clients’ behalf. The agent invested a lot of time in the home search process helping their clients find the right home. The agent was rewarded for their work through a commission once the house sale was finalized.
Today, in the digital age, consumers have access to information. In fact, most people begin their home search online, scour the web finding homes that match their needs, and enjoy going to the open homes on their own. This self-motivated consumer usually only needs professional guidance to complete the final stages of the transaction.
The modern home buyer does most of the search and legwork to identify their new home but does not gain any financial benefit. That’s where inhaus bridges the gap.
We started inhaus as a real estate marketplace for the self-motivated home buyer and seller, as we realize one size does not fit all – and clients want options. The inhaus client enjoys finding their new home but needs the professional help of a real estate agent to complete the home purchase and/or sale. Inhaus shares the commission in the form of a rebate with this buyer and/or seller because they are doing some of the work and rightfully deserve to be rewarded.
How long have you been incubating the idea?
Since March 2016
What do you think your technology will mean to the traditional way of buying a house?
We believe inhaus will augment the experience. Inhaus financially rewards consumers for doing some of the heavy lifting. Research shows that 90% of buyers begin their home search, 43% of buyers locate their home online and most of these individuals enjoy going to open homes on their own. We empower our buyers to handle the home search process, and inhaus provides 100% professional support from inspections, all paperwork including contracts, to close of escrow. Inhaus essentially provides what all real estate agents offer except we give a 50% commission rebate as a thank you for finding your home, as well as a home warranty plan as a special bonus.
That said, we believe there will also always be a market for the full-service agent. Inhaus happily refers consumers to one of our hand selected partner agents if that is preferred. You will still get an awesome 10% discount.
Did you set out to disrupt the real estate industry?
No, we know our business model isn’t for all buyers and sellers. We are here for the forward-thinking home buyer and seller. If inhaus does disrupt the traditional real estate industry, we would take that as tremendous validation.
Why do you think it’s important to reach our audience of Moms?
As moms ourselves, we personally know that women usually lead the charge of household purchases. In fact, research supports our belief that women are more likely to lead the home search process in a family, and having a child is often a trigger to purchase a home. Women want to contribute to their family’s income, and inhaus enables women to contribute to their family’s financial success when buying or selling a home. An example of this is a family that buys a $750k home in Los Angeles through inhaus, will save approx. $9k. Now that’s a hefty financial contribution to a family!
What are your backgrounds?
Avantika (AV) and Lorraine were both experienced real estate agents for over a decade and met at their children’s preschool in Silver Lake.
AV is passionate about devising elegant solutions to complex problems. When Avantika founded Inhaus, she married her two core passions: technology and real estate. In 1996, her passion for technology brought her to UCLA for a Master’s in Architecture with a focus on Design and Computation. Upon graduation, she spearheaded professional services for a Swiss-based startup where she built up a 25+ team engaged in e-commerce, enterprise, and Internet marketplace/exchange implementations, later acquired by Adobe. In 2005, she made a shift to real estate, driven by her desire to be an entrepreneur. For over 10 years, Avantika has been a successful real estate broker, starting her journey as a top producer with Keller Williams, where she was a member of the Regional Agent Leadership Council and later as the CEO of her own brokerage, HausAngeles. Avantika bring a unique 3-fold perspective and set of experiences to real estate: that of an architect, top producing real estate agent and a multiple-time home buyer and seller.
Lorraine, a graduate of USC and former fashion designer, entered the real estate market in 2004. While building a name for herself on the Westside she was tapped to do marketing and business development for startup tech companies with a focus on Millennials. Once Lorraine gave birth to her son, she took a hiatus; however, she continued managing her own investment real estate properties. Once her son entered Kindergarten she started pursuing real estate as a full-time career on the Eastside. In the Fall of 2016, AV asked Lorraine to join her in the launch of inhaus and the rest is history. Both Lorraine and AV are excellent partners who have merged their knowledge of real estate and tech.
What are your biggest hopes for the company?
We want to make a positive financial difference in the lives of our customers, our agents, and others, through our platform. Besides the money we are able to put back in the pockets of buyers and sellers, we also have a team of real estate agents that will make a great living through inhaus. On top of that, we personally believe in giving back! We believe people have causes near and dear to their heart. inhaus is the only online real estate company that gives to a charity of your choice. Inhaus financially makes a donation for every sale. We know you want to make a difference, and we want to help you. Together we can make a world a better place.
What is it like being a working mom, who’s also an entrepreneur?
Avantika: Energizing, exciting, challenging, exhausting – all of those, but wouldn’t have it any other way. I have two sets of twins (6 & 4 years) so at times there are not enough hours in the day, but this is a great first-hand lesson for them in grit, determination and hard work.
Lorraine: It is wonderful. I love being a mom to my 6-year old boy but I also love working and collaborating with others who are passionate about real estate. Being a working mom allows me to have the best of both worlds.
Anything else you’d like our readers to know?
inhaus is the first to personalize the home buying process through a curated search. HausMatchTM, our patent-pending algorithm, simplifies & improves home search by curating homes for buyers based on their personal community & life needs such as commute, school districts, entertainment, down to the best cup of coffee around the corner. We’re your neighborhood expert. Always available 24/7.
We believe that buying a home should be fun. It should leave you feeling empowered with money in your pocket to spend as you please.
MomsLA congratulates Avantika and Lorraine on the launch of inhaus.io and wishes them great success! We loved hearing their stories!
On April 19th inhaus launches its first sweepstakes to celebrate the launch of inhaus.io. inhaus is partnering with Murchison-Hume, chic natural, non-toxic cleaning products. The sweeps will run from 4/19/17 to 5/17/2017. Three grand prize winners will be randomly selected and receive a $250 Murchison Hume digital gift card and $250 Parachute Home digital gift card. Entrants must be 18 years of age to enter. To enter visit inhaus.io via this link.
Sarah Auerswald is the co-Founder of MomsLA.com. This post is part of a sponsored campaign.