Redfin Refunds More than $100 Million to Customers; Reaches $8 Billion in Home Sales

Amid Housing Market's Slow but Steady Recovery, Brokerage Writes Next Chapter in Reinventing Real Estate for Consumers

Nov 13, 2012, 09:00 ET from Redfin

SEATTLE, Nov. 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Technology-powered real estate broker Redfin ( today announced a major milestone in its mission to reinvent real estate: Redfin has now saved customers more than $100 million in real estate fees, more than $25 million in 2012, with an industry leading satisfaction rate of 97 percent. The company has also reached more than $8 billion in home sales.


During a time when home sales fell to a third of their 2005 peak, Redfin has grown faster than any other large-scale brokerage. Across the 19 markets Redfin serves, is among the most-visited brokerage website, and Redfin's mobile applications have been the highest rated among all real estate tools. At its Seattle-based headquarters, Redfin is currently preparing to double its current workspace; by the end of 2012, Redfin will have added more than 400 agents, software engineers, and other positions in the year.

"The changes that Redfin is bringing to the whole process of buying and selling a home are now happening at a meaningful scale," said Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman. "And saving customers more than a hundred million in fees is only part of the story. Through the worst real estate crisis in U.S. history, Redfin has grown faster than any other major brokerage by sticking to a simple formula: deliver better value to consumers, use technology to make the process easy and open at every step, and make sure their agent is always on your side. We have prospered by being the best, not the least expensive. And the scale we have achieved isn't simply a reflection of our success; it's instrumental to our success. We can now meet every client and know every block because we're reaching the point where we can employ local agents in each of the neighborhoods we serve."

Changing an Industry for the Better

In 2006, the company hired its first two agents to support its only market, in Seattle. Today, there are more than 500 Redfin real estate agents across 19 major U.S. markets, serving thousands of clients. The Redfin model is different from that of other brokers, uniquely aligning agent and customer interests. Every client who attempts to buy or sell a home with a Redfin agent receives a satisfaction survey, whether his or her deal closes or not. Redfin publishes every review to an online map, showing customers where the agent has succeeded and failed at representing buyers and sellers. Customer satisfaction ratings, not commissions, determine their bonus pay. Additionally, unlike traditional real estate agents, most Redfin agents get salaries, health care benefits, and opportunities for stock options.

Better Service, More Value
Redfin refunds homebuyers up to half of the buyer's agent commission. The average refund is more than $5,000. Redfin listing clients save up to 1.5 percent in fees, depending on the selling price of the home, with an average savings of $8,500. Redfin promotes clients' listings on its website, mobile tools and via e-mail, delivering double the traffic and exposure that other listings get on The additional exposure and the accountability created by Redfin's review system are the main reasons why Redfin, on average in 2011, sold homes 15 days faster than the other brokerages, for a price that was, compared to the asking price, $8,700 higher.

Technology, Transparency
Redfin is the only full-service real estate brokerage that is also a full-fledged technology company. This technology is the engine for customer advocacy, letting Redfin agents spend their time servicing clients, not looking for new ones. Redfin technology makes home buying and selling more efficient, and technology is the reason Redfin can refund customers thousands of dollars. Technology is also how Redfin holds its agents accountable for putting customers first. In 2012, Redfin launched several new features, including its Home Price Tool, Instant Alerts for new listings and price drops, and Search by School. Throughout its history, Redfin has delivered on innovations that give consumers the tools and information once reserved for real estate agents. Redfin firsts:

  • Map-based real estate search.
  • An agent compensation model based on customer satisfaction, not commission.
  • Real estate agent reviews, surveying every customer and publishing every review.
  • Data showing how long a home has been for sale and whether its price has been reduced.
  • Listing dashboard that charts online traffic to a listing against neighborhood averages.
  • Insights from agents about the homes that the agents have toured.
  • Analysis of realtors' negotiating patterns.

Redfin also analyzes its trove of real estate and user data for consumers' benefit. Redfin shares this information throughout its site, as well as in an ongoing series of reports called "Redfin Real-Time," which provide insights on homes sales, prices and buyer and seller sentiment.

Access Redfin Real-Time Reports and other real estate-focused content by visiting the company blog.

About Redfin
Redfin ( is a technology-powered real estate broker that represents people buying and selling homes. Founded and run by technologists, Redfin, has a team of experienced, full-service real estate agents who are advocates, not sales-people, earning customer-satisfaction bonuses, not commissions. Redfin's online tools feature all the broker-listed homes for sale, as well as for-sale-by-owner properties that don't pay brokers a commission. The company serves 19 U.S. markets, and has closed more than $5 billion in home sales. Follow us on or @redfin.