By Josh Wolanin,
Real estate agents have always been about networking. Whether it is looking for buyers, sellers or local service providers, agents have gathered in person connecting with colleagues and finding new opportunities to help current clients meet their goals.
The only problem with the approach was being able to commute to a location to take advantage of other agents’ networks. If you missed a meeting you could be left in the dark, or worse, leave a client on the market longer than originally planned.
New Minnesota startup 400 Doors is seeking to make the experience more efficient. Founded by Bill Pauling, Nils Hansen and Robert Nelson, 400 Doors is a social network dedicated to real estate agents, providing a more efficient form of networking on one centralized platform.
“Agents and buyers are frustrated due to the lack of inventory,” says Pauling. “The housing market needs something like this right now.”
The idea stemmed from an experience Pauling himself had where he was able to help a client find a deal faster by being introduced to another agents network. Every agent has a network of clients looking to buy or sell. Connecting with various agents allows for faster transactions and happier clients.
400 Doors uses a social network approach to provide agents with a way to filter through other agents clients while broadcasting their own client’s needs. Every day a one page email is sent to a user based on filters they set in place. This email curates information broadcast over 400 Doors database so agents can focus more on clients rather than sifting through paperwork, and is known as the Daily Distiller.
The Daily Distiller curates news from who you have decided to add to your Keychain. The Keychain is essentially a friends list, and adding agents to it is similar to a follow on Twitter, where you can see updates broadcast in real time.
“Brokerages use internal systems that are not as far reaching,” says Pauling. “400 Doors sets up agents from across various brokerages.”
While 400 Doors links agents together through their Keychain, the platform also connects local service providers with agents through their 400 Doors Deals program. Vendors are typically needed for every transaction, whether it is plumbers, movers or painters. 400 Doors Deals allows these providers to post deals on the platform. So far, vendors can pay either a monthly or yearly placement fee, with emails on new deals directed towards agents.
400 Doors is completely bootstrapped and currently has over 300 agents on the site. Hosted over Amazon Web Services, the platform combines enterprise technologies to be able to scale rapidly, and is ready to handle a massive user base from the get go.
“One of our strengths is the fact that we have very dedicated partners,” says Pauling. “We think the timing is perfect and we offer a much needed product.”