Buying or renting a home, or any real estate property, continues to be a challenging experience for most Filipinos. If you go online today, property listings are generally overloaded with information. You spend more time filtering out less significant data before you can even begin your search. And if you decide to work with an intermediary, your customer experience is as good as your real estate broker/agent.
Home seekers typically care about three data points at the start of their search for a suitable home base: price, location, and neighborhood. The search is next narrowed on the basis of their lifestyle or preferences. Unfortunately, finding a home in a community fit for one’s lifestyle or preference is not easy: access to community information where the property is located usually requires seeking out different sources — tips from friends, work colleagues, or doing extensive search via Google.
This is where Zipmatch comes in: an online one-stop shop for real estate buyers, sellers, and brokers, it offers an intelligent user experience for home seekers by matching them with recommended properties, and access to trusted real estate professionals who will then provide end-to-end guidance.
Zipmatch also takes a unique approach in its online portal, in contrast to existing real estate websites — home seekers will enjoy well-curated choices and will be conveniently connected to trusted brokers.
The site also provides curated and verified content such as photos, 360-degree virtual tours, and a database of condominiums, townhouses, and house and lots to make buying and renting home properties easier and more efficient.
Launched in April 2013, ZipMatch started as a real estate brokerage and listing site, like many other property sites today. However, founders John Dang and Chow Paredes saw a bigger opportunity — empowering both sides of the real estate market: the buyers and sellers, and eventually changing the way they do business.
Paredes said: “ZipMatch’s strength lies within our community of home seekers. It is a community built on trust. Thus, we want to provide them with reliable information and tools that will take them one step closer into owning or renting a home that is just right for them.”
Aside from home seekers, real estate professionals benefit from Zipmatch: the inclusion of brokers and property developers in the online platform boost the number of leads they get for properties, which they would not normally get from regular listings. Moreover, Zipmatch can match these industry experts with customers in need of professional advice for their home search.
“We welcome brokers and developers who want to be game changers in the real estate industry. We aim to change the way they sell by providing them with new tools and knowledge to maximize their online exposure to the right community of home seekers. This new way of making connections is more affordable and more efficient than the offline approach such as flyering,” Dang said.
Today, Zipmatch’s journey from being a brokerage firm with a few employees, into a mid-sized technology business operating with a workforce who deeply understands the pain points in buying and selling homes, now includes leading Philippine venture capital firm Kickstart Ventures as an investor and partner for growth.
“ZipMatch has a deep understanding of the property market from both the homebuyer and real estate professional side. As a venture capitalist with sharp focus around digital, Kickstart believes that the team has the necessary balance of platform and tech, data analytics, and human touch: making the home search process much more efficient, while also providing great real-life support where it counts,” said Minette Navarrete, President of Kickstart.
“We believe that ZipMatch can become the go-to-site of every Filipino when they search for the home of their dreams,” Paredes adds.
Zipmatch is the 26th investment of Kickstart, the wholly-owned venture capital firm of Globe Telecom that invests in digital tech startups globally.