Real Estate in Brief: Opendoor’s bonus credit, hidden doorways gaining popularity, and more



The home-trading startup Opendoor has made several changes of approach when attracting homebuyers in the Pheonix and Dallas- Fort Worth markets. The company has featured a bonus $1,000 credit to buyers who purchase Opendoor’s for sale homes in these markets; whether through an Opendoor “partner agent” or through a direct purchase on their own. Buyers represented by outside agents, who do not have a partnership with Opendoor, will not be eligible to receive the $1,000 credit.  

Opendoor has adjusted their website format, updating the Phoenix and Dallas-Fort Worth markets’ buying inquiry forms to three choices: buy directly with Opendoor, get introduced to a top local agent, and buy with your own agent. The first two options prompt buyers with the sub-descriptions of the credit bonus, while the inclusion of the three options aims reflect the company’s growing network of partner agents and its initiative to have a stronger presence in the real estate. 

“Some want the service that an agent provides, others need help finding an agent, and still others want full and direct control of their transaction at all points in time [by buying directly from Opendoor],” said Opendoor spokeswoman Cristin Culver. “We changed the page to make it clear to our buyers that Opendoor is here to help you through your journey no matter which type of experience best suits your needs.”  

In other real estate news:  

  • The Federal Housing Finance Agency Office of Minority and Women Inclusion issued their 2019 plan to increase diversity and inclusion. The plan will emphasize the FHFA’s second strategic goal, Ensure Liquidity, Stability, and Access in Housing Finance, through the use of annual operational plans and observed through performance metrics. The plan consists of three goals: strengthen diversity and inclusion understanding to drive cultural awareness, meaningful diversity and inclusion communication, and ensure OMWI organizational sustainability.  
  • With Halloween around the bend, the Washington Post reported the housing market’s increased demand for homes with secret doorways. Homeowners are using the hidden passages for anything between the safety and security of valuable items, to purely aesthetic and fun purposes. Home Depot and other home improvement stores offer the instillation of these hideaways renamed as Murphy doors, and have reported an increase in sales.  
  • Paint and color annalists from different brands have come together to predict the hottest interior colors of 2019. Several factors such as fashion, lifestyles, demographics and societal trends where considered when recording the seven colors: Metropolitan AF-690, Stainless Steel 37B-4, Reflecting Pool HGSW2324, Blueprint S470-5, Night Watch PPG1145-7, Orange Slice 2002-1B and Cavern Clay SW7701. 
  • The Trump Administration has proposed new guidelines that will offer developers tax breaks and encourages development in low-income areas. The guidelines are recognized by the Treasury Department as the Opportunity Zone program, which will enable businesses the flexibility to begin committing to major investments, spurring new projects. 

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