Friday Flash: What, me worry?

Free money to buy homes.

This exists.

In fact, there are over 1,500 public and private programs that provide financial assistance to homebuyers.

Down Payment Resource, a for-profit company based in Atlanta, has been finding, screening and organizing them since 2011. They partner with MLSs to tie programs to specific areas and properties.

The intent is to oil the machinery of homeownership.

I’ve known about this company for a while (and perhaps you have too: DPR won an Inman Innovator Award a while back), but I’ve never had a chance to talk with them until this week.

I’m giving them a plug here because their pitch seems so obvious, and so salutary, in a time when many of us are worried about first-time homeownership.

I’m not sure why NAR doesn’t go big in this area.

I can’t figure out what to say about this, so I’m just going to lay it on you:


We’ve always liked Open Home Pro, an iPad app for collecting and managing open house leads.

The app was created by two really smart guys who managed to get thousands of paid agent downloads, but had trouble scaling the business. bought Open Home Pro earlier this year and I figured it would die a slow, regrettable death.

It didn’t. HomeFinder actually put some energy into the app. It is now free and they’ve built out a broker version that’s pretty slick (think about a brokerage being able to capture sign-in leads from every open and routing them to their mortgage affiliate).

I love native B2B apps and am glad to see this one’s still kicking.

Speaking of mortgage affiliates… I hear more and more lenders complaining that they’re losing money on mortgage originations. At the same time, some real estate brokers still tell me that the only reason they’re profitable is mortgage fees.

Sometimes I feel like the real estate and mortgage business models are like a home being eaten slowly by termites. Things look fine on the outside, but the integrity of the structure grows ever weaker until, one day…

As if we didn’t have enough to worry about, This article in the New York Times highlighted the potentially dramatic impact climate change will have on housing.

The matter seems obvious. Lots of desirable markets will become undesirable; many obscure or cheap markets will become hot. It’s all a matter of when buyers and sellers start to see and feel the affects enough to take action (or inaction).

Me? I am buying investment property in Portland, OR.

Try and enjoy the weekend.