Why We Invested: DwellWell
Ok, we’ve all seen the meme, but now let’s pick up our pencils and cross out ̶h̶o̶w̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶d̶o̶ ̶t̶a̶x̶e̶s̶ and replace with — home buying.
Despite one’s background, age, education or job, buying a home is something that no one can fully understand until actually going through the process. But even being a second-time home buyer won’t make you an expert. A myriad of dependencies can alter the process, from budget to loan type, from location to home preferences — the list goes on and on.
How do I find an agent? Does my agent know my neighborhood? Do I call my realtor or call the mortgage broker? Do I get an inspection? Do I even need an inspection? Is this an FHA loan? When is the closing? What even happens at the closing? Wait! I live in [insert expensive city name here] — will I find myself in a bidding war?
Or as Dwellwell says: Why is Buying a Home so F#*%!@$ Hard?
DwellWell is a marketplace that connects real estate agents with qualified buyers at the perfect moment, shrinking the time from initial meeting to closing on the home, simplifying homebuying. The DwellWell platform educates buyers on the home buying process, uncovers their preferences, and works to get them ready all before connecting them with agents.
DwellWell changes the game for agents by allowing them to prospect less, match with qualified buyers at the right time in the home buying process, and gain transformative insights so they can do what they do best: get their clients into the right home at light speed. Matching the right buyer with the right agent is more crucial than ever. Over the past year homes have spent an average of 16 days (September 2020) to 43 days (September 2021) on the market . And in 2020, an unprecedented two-thirds of buyers made an offer on a house sight unseen.
Low housing supply and increases in housing prices have soared 13.2% over the past year. According to a new Urban Institute report, if the current trends continue, we can expect to see a decline in US homeownership over the next few decades.. With the expected homeownership rate dropping to 62.1%, this will have the greatest impact on millennials, compared with their parents at the same age, and Black Americans, as the racial homeownership gap widens. Further, Covid-19 has significantly affected both supply and demand and housing prices as the change in work habits, recreation, and social interactions has forced urban and suburban residents to rethink how and where to live.
Since the 1930s, the crux of homebuying has been the mortgage. The unbundling of fintech has been discussed from multiple approaches. Unbundling the bank, unbundling healthcare — CB insights even unbundled the bathroom at one point.
At Anthemis, we believe that financial services can be unbundled, rebundled and sometimes just reimagined to better suit the needs of an evolving society. But we also see a massive opportunity exploring the pathways that lead us through or to financial products. DwellWell fits that bill. While DwellWell is focused on the homebuyer journey and efficiency for agents and buyers alike, we see a massive opportunity for so many facets of homebuying, homeownership, and products and associated services. The DwellWell team is currently focused on homebuyers and agents in California and rolling out to additional geographies in the coming months.
And last but definitely not least, when we met Samantha Carow and Matt Canzoneri the first word that came to mind was “REAL”. Anyone who meets them will know exactly what I’m talking about. Their energy and expertise as well as their complement as co-founders is evident in every interaction. That realness is reflected into their product, into the pursuit to understand their users, and into their abilities to recruit top tier talent. You’ll see what I mean by checking out their culture blog here.
We’ve been impressed from the start with Matt’s track record in sales and customer success as well as his phenomenal leadership EQ and skills in scaling organizations. (One of my favorite stories is how Matt figured out how to automate the majority of his role at a previous company to free up time to study for the GMAT. Not only did revenues grow, Matt successfully passed his GMAT with flying colors. Entrepreneurial stories of legend). We’re inspired by Samantha’s vision as CTO, her unique path to a career in software development leading her to Reddit, and her passion and commitment to recruit more women for early stage engineering teams
The Female Innovators Lab by Barclays and Anthemis is thrilled to be supporting DwellWell and are looking forward to the homebuying road ahead!