Walkthrough Revolutionizes Denver Real Estate Listings with Fully Immersive VR Experience
Few things in life are as important — and directly correlated — as stressful as buying a home.
Walkthrough, a Denver-based startup, allows potential buyers and renters to virtually tour properties without ever having to physically visit the location. Co-Founder and CEO, Pascal Wagner disclosed that on average, agents spend 30 minutes driving to and from showings, and show approximately 8 homes per buyer. There are realtors who have even shown 60 homes to buyers over the course of 3 months, while the average first time buyer will tour 40-50 properties before making a final decision. Calculate in the gas, wear & tear on cars, and time lost between meetings and showing homes to a buyer is exhausting and takes a signiﬁcant amount of time. Wagner saw a problem, and was ready to offer the solution.
“The point is not to completely replace visiting a home, but to drastically reduce the amount of homes you need to go to,” said Wagner. Oftentimes it takes only a few minutes, or even seconds, to know if a property is for you. Walkthrough allows you to prescreen what’s on the market, gain an initial feel, and eliminate blind visits. Being informed prior to a visit saves everyone valuable time.
With over 792 million people moving every year, this technology feeds a real need in our faced paced world. Not only does Walkthrough allow users to virtually tour new apartments, homes and oﬃces, the technology also lets you virtually stage the space. Consumers can even see what their own furniture would look like in the new property, change the color of the walls, and more.
What sets Walkthrough apart from other VR real estate technology is its fully immersive experience, explained Wagner, as he strapped me into the HTC Vive (currently the only device its available on). As I entered the VR apartment, I was impressed with the natural sunlight coming through the windows, the beautiful hardwood floors, and the adorable tiny tile bathroom I was able to enter. I explored the kitchen, stood at the dated gas stove, even crouched down to look under the kitchen table – no dust bunnies! I was absolutely blown away, and had I been in the market for an apartment, I definitely think this one would be a go. Wagner then lead me into a raw commercial space, where I was able to select and rearrange furniture for my “office” and even choose the colors of the furniture.
Currently, Walkthrough has 5% of Denver’s real estate mapped in its database. Wagner feels that Walkthrough will need to reach 20% before it becomes mainstream and truly helpful to consumers.
According to Walkthrough, “to build the initial database of homes we currently provide a marketing suite that provides signiﬁcantly more value to selling agents than what existing services provide. By using technology to automate what our competitors use expensive labor for, we’re able to lower our price more than 7x of any of our competitors. This makes it a no brainer for a real estate agent to use us as their marketing service provider, thus allowing us to scan their home to be added to our virtual reality database.” With this being said, real estate agents are Walkthrough’s target audience, as they would house the technology and HMDs in their offices for consumer use.
Walkthrough is growing at an incredible rate. The concept was born one year ago, when Wagner and co-founder Jeremy Theisen came up with premise. By June 1, 2016 Walkthrough was incorporated as an LLC, and by March 6, 2017 it launched in San Francisco. The company is now at 10 employees (from the original two founders) and Wagner says the company will be at 50 employees by the end of the year. When asked about the future of Walkthrough, Wagner predicts the company will be in 10 different cities by the end of year, and international by the end of the next round of funding.