Venture Team Update: InHouse
May 17, 2016
As the housing market bounces back, one firm is helping real estate agents streamline business by instantly creating consistently branded marketing materials for their listings through unique web and mobile applications. InHouse launched in May 2015 after three Eller graduates completed their year-long intensive experiential education program at the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship. Luis Palomares, the firm’s CEO, Cooper Kowalski, CMO, and Mat Friedman, CFO, co-founded the real estate software company along with UA engineer graduate Josh Gill.
Currently integrated with 160 multiple listing services (MLS) nationwide, InHouse enables real estate agents to use listing and neighborhood data to easily create all the materials they need to market their listings. The software’s key features are modern design, personalization, and ease of use. In less than 10 minutes, agents can launch a set of landing pages, social media advertisements, listing reports, brochures, and postcards.
As part of their signup, InHouse walks agents through the process of building their brand by selecting fonts, colors, and design elements that then are used on every marketing piece generated by the application. Rather than uploading the same information to several different platforms or waiting on outsourced design work, InHouse enables agents to take care of their marketing from one easy-to-use application.
The concept originated with Palomares and Gill, who had created a prototype after Palomares gained experience working for several realty agencies in 2013. Palomares, an Eller student who had a programming background, decided to enroll in the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship and met Friedman and Kowalski during the summer of 2014 when the students were choosing their cohorts.
“The idea for our business started during my time working with several real estate teams in town. I noticed that many agents were looking for help creating marketing materials and maintaining a consistent online presence. They had a really hard time keeping up with all the different platforms and technology,” Palomares said. “Our goal since then has been to offer a quality product that is easy to use.”
The three Eller graduates credit the McGuire program with giving them the opportunity to launch their start-up last year.
“McGuire walked us through the nitty-gritty process of launching a company, even the parts that weren’t sexy, like writing a business plan,” Kowalski said, adding that he keeps a textbook from the program on his desk and will refer to it from time to time.
The team also lauded the support they received from the McGuire staff.
“When we were in the program we had [mentor-in-residence] Jim Jindrick, who met with us at least once a week to discuss our business plan, financials, and competitors,” Palomares said. “Whenever we had a question he was generally the first person we would go to. We also worked closely with the other mentors and McGuire staff who all have their own specialties.”
After spending several months in development, InHouse brought their platform to market in February 2016, and by March, they had more than 50 agents using it during their beta period. Based in downtown Tucson, InHouse operates out of Connect Coworking. InHouse continues to see a growing user base and has expanded into 13 states.
Top image courtesy of InHouse. L-R: Emerson Budd, Cooper Kowalski, Blue (the venture's mascot), Luis Palomares, Josh Gill, Dan Goers, Mat Friedman.