In our latest real estate tech entrepreneur interview, we’re speaking with Luke Glass from RealX.
Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Luke Glass, CEO and Co-founder of RealX. We are an exchange to buy, sell, and lease property rights. Property rights include leasing property for solar, wind, oil & gas, timber, cellular towers, conservation easements, and more. RealX allows landowners and buyers to connect and unlock the potential of every property.
My co-founder is Justin Byers – he’s the fun one!
What problem does your product/service solve?
The process to lease property rights has been opaque with people and paper-driven processes. Companies were forced to send out postcards, knock on doors and cold-call landowners to find the land they need. Landowners didn’t know who to trust; how to best market their properties; or what to negotiate.
RealX is the first aggregated exchange to list, search and transact property rights in a fully automated process. Landowners can list all of the property rights in one place – and be assured that companies across industries (solar, timber, etc..) will have the ability to see it. Companies can now see all available acreage in their target market while sitting in their office – no boots on the ground and no marketing costs. They can make offers directly to landowners in a trusted, transparent exchange.
What are you most excited about right now?
Real estate professionals can now represent their clients in RealX. We have opened up an entirely new asset class for agents to transact. Agents have built trust in their communities and are connected with landowners that have significant acreage. Now agents can assist them in marketing those property rights to interested buyers.
An unexpected part of the process is how many agents and brokers have listed their own land in the exchange. They realize that RealX is the best way to market their properties and gives them the best chance to monetize their land. When companies want to enter a new area, they will always check RealX first (low-cost and fast) before sending out postcards or knocking on doors (high cost and slow). Landowners registered in RealX will get a disproportionate share of the monetization because they will be the easiest for buyers to find.
What’s next for you?
Changing the way property rights are transacted in the U.S. requires changes across a spectrum of companies. One of our core beliefs is, “When a partner succeeds, we succeed.” We are investing in partnerships across brokerages, agents, landowners, natural resource law firms, closing/title/escrow companies, land management firms, buyers, environmental impact specialists, valuation experts, conservation credit companies, land management software, and many more.
It has been exciting to see the adoption curve accelerating. While connecting landowners and buyers is our primary goal, there is an entire ecosystem of supporting products and services that support this endeavor. The goal is to remove friction from the process and increase value for all parties.
What’s a cause you’re passionate about and why?
Fatherlessness is an issue that stirs my heart. Nothing brings out the emotions like seeing a proud father speak about his children or cheer them on as they grow up. It immediately makes me think about children who grow up without a father in their life. For the last year, I have spent 3 hours per week with a young child who doesn’t get to see his Dad. While I can’t be his Dad, I can cheer him on and let him know he has someone who will always be there.
Thanks to Luke for sharing his story. If you’d like to connect, find him on LinkedIn here.
We’re constantly looking for great real estate tech entrepreneurs to feature. If that’s you, please read this post — then drop me a line (drew @ geekestatelabs dot com).
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