urbanic

New web site lets home buyers keep the commission

Kashif Jawed has been helping friends and family buy homes for the past seven years. The former management consultant says it's his hobby. But now he's making it his full-time gig with Urbanic.ca, a new website and real estate service that lets home buyers in the GTA keep the commission from these big-ticket purchases.

The process is simple, says Jawed. As a potential buyer, you can sign up to get alerts from Urbanic.ca when new properties go on the market. You can also run your own MLS searches and attend open houses. When you're ready to move forward with a house or condo, you work with an Urbanic realtor who'll negotiate and submit an offer on your behalf.

"So basically anything that an agent does, we will do, minus showing them around, which consumes most of an agent's time," says Jawed. He co-founded Urbanic.ca along with Ali Ahmad who does marketing and they work closely with a licensed real estate agent.

Instead of getting commission from the sale (usually 2.5 percent, according to Jawed), Urbanic will take $5,000; you'd get the rest. Since launching last month, three customers have made offers using the web-based service; one however, fell through.

Jawed also notes that around 50 users have signed up for the company's alerts. Currently, the realtor sends these out manually, but he says they're working on automating them and beefing up their customers' search capabilities as well.

"Real estate is one of the markets where no one's really done anything," says Jawed. "No disruptions, no changes happening. It's stayed the same for years now." Now Jawed and his team are trying to shake things up.

Photo by myhometour.ca

UPDATE Nov. 21, 2015: A previous version of this post said Jawed created the site with two other co-founders. He has one co-founder and works closely with a licensed realtor.


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