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RET Ventures Closes $165 Million Industry-Backed Fund to Back the Next Generation of Real Estate Technology Innovators



PARK CITY, Utah – (BUSINESS WIRE) – RET Ventures, an industry-backed venture capital firm focused on technology for apartment buildings, single-family houses (SFR), residential construction and broader real estate investments, today announced the final closing of its second fund. The oversubscribed $ 165 million fund will complement RET’s $ 109 million initial fund raised in November 2018.

The fund far exceeded its original target of $ 130 million due to extremely strong investor interest. It is backed by RET’s growing base of strategic investors, including more than 40 leading multi-family and single-family real estate owners, operators and developers in North America who act as technology development partners and clients for the startups RET invests in.

Participants in RET Ventures Fund II include affiliates of large multi-family real estate investment trusts (REITs), including Essex Property Trust, Inc., Invitation Homes, Inc., Mid-America Apartment Communities, Inc. (MAA), and UDR, Inc. and as as well as private owners and managers such as BH Management, Bozzuto, Cortland, Edward Rose & Sons, Greystar Real Estate Group, Starlight Capital, Starwood Capital Group and Waterton. The group together owns or manages approximately 2.4 million rental units and includes 9 of the 20 largest multi-family owners and 9 of the top 20 managers as assessed by the National Multifamily Housing Council.

This growing group of strategic real estate investors, unique in their shared asset class focus, helps RET identify weaknesses perceived by institutional owners and operators that technology can solve. It also gives RET-backed companies and entrepreneurs the opportunity to have more direct access to the largest multi-family and single-family businesses in the United States, shortening their sales cycles, and dramatically increasing their adoption rates. Finally, the collaborative partnership helps these strategic investors work with innovative startups that can greatly benefit their businesses.

“Our mission at RET Ventures from the start has been to bring together entrepreneurs and institutional owners and operators who are powering the $ 7 trillion multi-family and SFR industries to innovate and create a better, more efficient, and more sustainable housing sector. Following the great success of our first fund, we are excited to more than double the size of our strategic investor base in this new fund, which will enable us to continue to shape the future of real estate technology for years to come, ”said John Helm, Founder and Partner at RET Ventures.

“Over 45 million US households live in rental real estate, and the industry is at a rapid pace as the pandemic, the rise in teleworking, rapid household formation, and changing consumer preferences continue to transform where and how Americans live. With this dynamic, technology will play a critical role in reshaping the home and helping the industry adapt to a rapidly changing world, ”added Christopher Yip, Partner at RET Ventures.

“We have long recognized the incredible power of technology to not only optimize and differentiate apartment buildings, but also to shape the future of the entire sector,” said Tom Toomey, Chairman and CEO of UDR Inc. “We started 2017 as one of the founding anchor investors invested in RET Ventures and have since gained tremendous benefits across our portfolio by utilizing cutting edge technologies aimed at achieving operational efficiency, better interaction with our tenants, and faster responsiveness. ”to the ever-changing Needs of our company and our customers. We are proud to be starting a new chapter in this relationship by investing in the latest RET funds, and look forward to our continued role in shaping Rent-Tech’s development in the years to come. ”

In addition to its deep investor base in the entire multi-family sector, RET has further expanded its reach in the real estate industry. The group of strategic investors now includes the two largest SFR operators – Invitation Homes, Inc. and Pretium (Progress Residential) – who together own / operate 135,000 units, nearly 50% of the institutional SFR units in the US

“The single-family home rental market is experiencing a period of significant growth, both from tenants who are less and less into dense urban centers and looking for more space, and from investors looking to capitalize on these emerging trends,” said Invitation Homes, Inc. President and CEO Dallas Tanner. “Technology will play a critical role in this market as it continues to grow as SFR operators will benefit greatly from tools that streamline management and maintenance, and provide tenants with a worry-free experience. We pride ourselves on supporting RET Ventures and their work as they continue to identify and promote the products that will drive the development of both the single family home rental and real estate industries in general. ”

Since launching its first fund in 2017, RET Ventures has supported many of the most successful products in the Rent-Tech ecosystem. As a result, RET Ventures Fund I has three completed / announced exits from portfolio companies to strategic and financial acquirers and is achieving prime fund returns in the decile. One of the best-known portfolio companies is SmartRent, a provider of enterprise smart home automation for property managers and tenants. RET led the company’s Seed and Series A funding rounds and was instrumental in subsequent rounds and remained the company’s largest shareholder. RET’s investments and SmartRent’s strategic leadership have helped drive the company’s growth from just 17 units in 2017 to more than 160,000 units in 2020. In April 2021, the company announced plans to go public via SPAC, with an initial valuation of $ 2.2 billion.

Other market-leading companies in RET’s portfolio are:

  • CheckpointID, which uses technology that validates government-issued IDs to reduce rental fraud; CheckpointID was recently acquired by MRI Software

  • Falkbuilt, a construction technology company that is streamlining interior design with its unique digital building element technology

  • Funnel, the leading provider of marketing and leasing software for multi-family owners and managers

  • GiGstreem, which recently closed a $ 50 million financing round to provide building-wide WiFi in apartment buildings

  • Kasa, a flexible accommodation company that works with rental properties to increase their income streams

  • SightPlan, the leading provider of maintenance and resident service software in the multi-family industry

RET Ventures is headquartered in Park City, Utah.

About RET Ventures

As a leading real estate technology investment company, RET Ventures is the first industry-backed early-stage venture fund to strategically focus on building the latest rent-tech technologies for multi-family and single-family rental properties. RET’s base of strategic investors includes some of the largest REITs as well as private property owners and managers who control approximately 2.4 million rental units. Through its extensive expertise and its connections within the industry, RET has created a unique ecosystem for real estate innovations that offers the companies it supports significant added value and gives them access to thought leaders, development partners and ongoing advice. Further information can be found at

Investor Quotes


“Today, the multi-family investment and property management sectors are more competitive than ever and technology is a critical differentiator for companies like ours,” said Cortland Founder and CEO Steven DeFrancis. “RET has excelled as a leader in identifying and promoting the products that make a real difference to our operations and the lives of our employees and residents, and we are delighted to be able to provide first-hand guidance on many of their products in the portfolio companies’ development. We are very excited to contribute to their latest fund and look forward to leveraging their expertise as we continue to grow and improve our business. ”

Essex Property Trust

“As part of our longstanding commitment to shaping the future of the multi-family industry through technology, we partnered with several other leading REITs to create RET Ventures as an anchor investor in 2017,” said Michael J. Schall, President and CEO of Essex Property Trust, Inc. “Since then, we have had tremendous returns on this commitment and have found significant value in testing many of the products of RET portfolio companies on our properties and providing them with firsthand guidance to address our pain points. With a growing group of multi-family and single-family players participating in this latest fund, we are more confident than ever that RET is able to take the sector to greater heights. ”


“The pandemic, the increase in teleworking and other social changes have placed the home increasingly at the center of everyday life for millions of people. These changes have underscored the primacy of the residential asset class, ”said Eric Bolton, CEO of Mid-America Apartment Communities, Inc. (MAA). “As the multi-family industry is developing faster than ever before, we are delighted to continue to be an anchor investor in RET Ventures and to play a vital role together in shaping the future of the industry.”


“We are proud to invest in RET’s latest fund that will drive further innovation in the industry and improve multi-family operations in general,” said David Schwartz, chairman, CEO and co-founder of Waterton and chairman of the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC .). ). “RET has a long history of identifying and promoting products that uniquely address the needs of apartment buildings. We look forward to continuing our relationship for the months and years to come and supporting the transformative impact of technology on the rental housing industry. ”

Real Estate News

Are There Fees for Canceling a Real Estate Agent Contract?



You did your research, found a real estate agent who you thought was right for the job, and signed an agreement for the professional to list your property. But when time goes by – and your house isn’t sold – you may be wondering: Can you terminate this real estate contract – and if so, at what cost?

In a perfect world – where we all read the fine print before we sign a legally binding document – you already know the answers to these questions because they are in the listing agreement you signed.

But this is the real world – a world where many of us sign things up in a hurry and don’t expect there to be any problems. If that’s the case for you, here’s what you need to know about terminating a listing agreement.

What is in your listing contract?

Of course, nobody can force you to sell your home, but real estate brokerage contracts are legally binding contracts.

Listing agreements vary between real estate companies, property managers, and cities and states. In general, however, they all typically include a time frame that they cover for a particular property. If the contract doesn’t include a cancellation fee, you can cancel at any time and you’ll be off the hook. However, many list a fee that will be billed to the seller if the contract is canceled before that expiration date.

The fee often covers the agent’s time and expense. This may include the costs incurred by the agent to have your property listed on the multiple listing service in your area, as well as forms, photos, videos, brochures, and other means of promoting your home. In some cases, the fee is a percentage of the list price.

If there are any fees, you can always wait for the contract to be completed to avoid the possibility of having to pay them. In many cases, however, even if you cancel early, you can make arrangements with your real estate agent.

“If you quit early, chances are the broker will let you off the hook for the rest of the contract – at least most of us – especially if the homeowner requests that termination,” says Maria Jeantet is a real estate agent at Coldwell Banker C&C Properties in Redding, CA. “It all depends on what you do when you tell them you want to cancel.”

Reasons for terminating a listing agreement – and alternatives

The reasons why people want to terminate a listing contract vary. If you’ve decided not to sell your property after all, that’s one thing. But if you want to cancel the listing because you’re not happy with your agent’s advertising, or disappointed that they’re not getting as many views or offers as you hoped, that’s another matter. The latter can often be worked out with your agent through clear communication about what you are dissatisfied with and what changes you would like to see.

Jeantet says it’s best to always be direct with your agent.

“Keep it clean. Either speak heart-to-heart to your current agent about the resignation or talk to them about getting more out of their service for you,” she says.

If this is not effective, you can also consider contacting a broker’s brokerage firm (if your broker is not the broker / owner) to discuss the issues and possibly reassign a different agent.

If nothing can be resolved, it may be in your best interest to cancel, even if you have to pay a fee.

Make sure you get the cancellation in writing because if you are listing your home with a new agent within the time period covered by the listing agreement and there is no written cancellation from your current agent, your current agent may charge commission fees to sell the home. Look back at your listing agreement to see what it says.

Not all real estate relationships work, people change their minds, and circumstances change. This is why it is so important to do your research when it comes to choosing a real estate agent and carefully examine what is in a listing agreement before signing it.

The post Are there any fees for canceling a brokerage agreement? first appeared on Real Estate News & Insights |®.

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What Community Associations Should Know From HOA Attorneys – Real Estate and Construction



Servicing, repairs, upkeep and rule enforcement include for a. daily business Community association – now one of the most common forms of housing in North Carolina.

To date, nearly 27% of the state’s population lives in some type of single family home, townhouse, or condominium managed by a homeowners association known as an HOA.

With its explosive growth and abundance of housing options, from affordable new homes to multi-million dollar neighborhoods, the Triangle has become a hotbed for these types of planned communities. In response, the company recently announced a dedicated team to assist new and established boards of directors and managers of associations in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and the surrounding area in addressing the challenges of running an HOA.

The Triangle Team consists of litigation attorneys Amy Wooten, Lawyer for business and community associations Madeline Lipe, Real Estate Lawyer James Toddand creditor attorney Thomas Wolff. Each has a unique perspective to serve and guide a community organization at all stages of development and through all kinds of disputes and conflicts.

I recently asked my colleagues to share the most important things about HOAs. This is what they had to say:

“I would say that risk management is one of the most important things that community associations need to know and appreciate!”

Amy Wooten, Litigator

It is vital that community associations take a proactive approach to managing risks that they may face for many reasons. One of these reasons is that proactive risk management can reduce the likelihood of litigation against a community association or enable the community association to defend itself in the event of a legal dispute. It can also better enable a community association to cope with the financial difficulties and other stressors that often arise when a community association finds itself in a situation where it is the party to litigate. In short, an association’s risk management strategy should include seeking legal advice and advice early on when a potential dispute or legal problem arises. This requires the community association to invest in legal fees. In my experience, however, these dollars are mostly well spent. Whereas, skipping this investment, among other negative consequences, will result in community associations incurring significant legal fees that could be avoided or significantly reduced if they had been proactive in finding an attorney.

“When it comes to a community union question, the starting point is almost always the same … start with the administrative papers.”

Madeline Lipe, Lawyer for business and community associations

The relevant documents of a community association (declaration, statutes and statutes) form the basis for understanding the role of the community association. The purposes of the community association are set forth in its administrative documents which, along with the applicable North Carolina bylaws, outline the association’s responsibilities, define the rights and obligations of owners, and generally set the framework of the community. Accordingly, it is important to know what is in the relevant documents so that the powers, duties and limits of the association are understood.

“Community associations are empowered, governed, and constrained by the real estate contracts that create their communities.”

James Todd, Real estate attorney

It is important that ward associations understand the authority and limits of their covenants. We often come across church associations that “for as long as everyone can remember” have been operating in a certain way without understanding why. We can help analyze and change the covenants – whether it be a review of decades-old covenants that do not meet the current needs of the fellowship, or proposed changes to bring the covenants into line with longstanding practice. A community association’s covenants are the framework in which it operates – we can help ensure that this framework meets the needs of your community association. “

“One of the most important things to keep in mind when dealing with overdue accounts is taking action early and being consistent in enforcing a homeowner’s payment obligations.”

Thomas Wolff, Attorney for creditors’ rights

Homeowners can find it much easier to pay off their arrears when they are still manageable and relatively small. Contacting them early and being ready to work out an appropriate payment plan can help prevent major problems before they arise. However, there will always be accounts that can prove to be disruptive and ultimately require legal help. In these cases, it is still important to contact the association’s legal advisor to take swift action to maintain the repayment claim and mortgage the defaulting homeowner’s property. In most cases, the lien covers not only the overdue reports, interest and other charges but also the legal fees of the association. Acting quickly helps the association to achieve an optimal repayment position and makes the growing debt difficult for the homeowner to overlook – especially if he wants to sell or refinance his property. By acting early and dealing consistently with overdue accounts, an association can help increase its chances of recovery.

Not every community association conflict may need an attorney, but having qualified legal representation can go a long way towards ensuring the health and peace of your HOA. Our triangle team, supported by our full service, nationwide Practice of community associations, is ready to support your community association.

The content of this article is intended to provide general guidance on the subject. You should seek expert advice regarding your specific circumstances.

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Cushman & Wakefield Echinox Adopts Yardi to Manage Commercial Real Estate Portfolio



The independent and operated subsidiary of Cushman & Wakefield will use fully connected cloud-based software to manage commercial real estate

AMSTERDAM, June 22, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Cushman & Wakefield Echinox, a leading real estate company in the Romanian market, has selected Yardi® as its technology partner for commercial property management in. elected Romania. The platform will offer investors, developers, owners and tenants a full range of services. Cushman & Wakefield Echinox manages around 50,000 square feet of office buildings in Bucharest.

Cushman & Wakefield Echinox launched Yardi® Voyager Commercial to streamline property and financial management. Yardi Voyager combines real estate management and accounting with property, finance, budgets, forecasting, construction and maintenance and offers a holistic view of an entire commercial real estate portfolio.

“We chose Yardi Yoyager Commercial as an integrated platform for real estate, finance and ancillary cost management, tenant settlement, accounts receivable, accounts payable and budgeting. Yardi gives us the ability to provide improved access to data, which will improve the quality of reporting to our customers and will help us meet our growth goals, “said Mihaela Petruescu, Partner Asset Services Cushman & Wakefield Echinox.

“We are excited to have Cushman & Wakefield Echinox as our newest customer in Romania, “said Neal Gemassemer, Vice President for International at Yardi. “We look forward to working with Mihaela and her asset services team as their passion for exceeding customer expectations and their experience guarantee adaptable customer-centric solutions.”

Learn more about how Yardi supports real estate and property management clients in all areas Europe.

About Cushman & Wakefield Echinox

Cushman & Wakefield Echinox is a leading real estate consultancy in the local market and the exclusive subsidiary of Cushman & Wakefield infield Romania, owned and operated independently, with a team of over 60 professionals and employees offering a full range of services to investors, developers, landlords and tenants. You can find more information at

About Cushman & Wakefield

Cushman & Wakefield is one of the world’s leading providers of commercial real estate services with 50,000 employees in over 60 countries and a turnover of 7.8 billion euros. More information is available at

About Yardi

Yardi® develops and supports industry-leading investment and real estate management software for all types and sizes of real estate companies. Yardi was founded in 1984 and is based in Santa Barbara, California.and serves customers worldwide from offices in Australia, Asia, the middle East, Europe, and North America. Visit for more information.


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