ExactDeposit will be launched via a pilot project through Royal LePage Atlantic and other local brokerages before it is rolled out across Canada in 2015.
“Mobile payments for real estate deposits have never be possible before,” says Chris Ryan, founder and director of ExactDeposit. “We are the first of our kind.”
The technology has been designed to offer greater convenience and efficiency to buyers and sellers, agents and real estate brokerages.
“[The transaction] can be completed from anywhere, using a smartphone, laptop or tablet,” explains Ryan. “As soon as there is an accepted offer, you can place your deposit, whereas right now, as soon as you have an accepted offer, you have about 24 hours to get that certified check to the brokerage. If it doesn’t get there, your deal is null and void.”
Buyers will also have the option, for the first time, to pay for a deposit via their credit card without incurring a massive amount of interest. “Most people do things on their phones or at least online, and there is usually a credit card attached to it,” says Ryan.
“People have been paying their deposits via an advance on their credit card, but then they’re paying 21 or 22 per cent the minute they take it off their card. This is a payment that’s treated no differently than when you buy gas, jeans or a beer.”
Agents and brokerages can also use the technology to follow a transaction via a real-time dashboard, so that they have full visibility of all the deposit invoices created, paid and pending.
“They go from zero visibility to 100 per cent visibility,” adds Ryan. “The dashboard keeps everyone up to date.
“We created it to give homebuyers an option, to give agents another tool that they can use that is really current and to give brokerages a tool to see the transaction in real-time.”
The service will cost homebuyers 2.9 per cent on the transaction, while there is also a fee structure for agents.
The Canadian real estate market may be poised for transformation with the introduction of mobile-driven deposits, set to help agents and their clients avoid the snafus that too often scuttle deals.