FAQ



Why do we have an Accelerator focused on Real Estate?

The real estate industry accounts for 15 percent of the U.S. economy, over $7 billion of ad spend and 2.5 million jobs with its related professions.  There are over $1 trillion of transactions in residential and commercial real estate and housing and other home services accounts for an additional $1 trillion.  Over $45 billion are generated in commissions amongst more than 1 million REALTORS®, 100,000 brokerage offices and 12 million consumers.  In short, the real estate market is huge and it is ready for innovation. 

Companies approach us all the time asking for help to access and navigate the landscape.  Practitioners in the marketplace are asking us to weed through the noise and help them find the best solutions that will allow them to conduct their business faster and more efficiently.  We are in a unique position to leverage our expertise to identify best-in-class solutions and provide a bridge between those that are looking for help with those that can provide it. 

About the Program

Who should apply?

If you would agree with one or more of the following statements, you should apply:

  • You are interested in tapping into a multi-trillion dollar market
  • You are interested in leveraging a $4.5 billion brand to tap into that  market
  • You have a technology that is bringing innovation, efficiencies and value to marketplace; the real estate vertical is applicable to that marketplace.
  • You could use a group of your target customers to beta test your product
  • You could use the input from your target customers to refine your product
  • You are ready to work relentlessly with us with the aim to increase the value of your business multi-fold in 8 short months

 

How is REach® different from other Accelerator or Incubator programs?

REach® is looking to catapult you into a defined marketplace.  We will use our connections to guide you in all things Real Estate while helping you to define a well rounded business.

We work closely with other accelerators and incubators and welcome anyone who has graduated from Excelerate, TechStars, DreamIt, YCombinator and other great programs to apply to NAR REach® for targeted outreach, ongoing coaching and support.

We have already been through an Incubator/Accelerator program.  Does it make sense to do this too?

Yes, if you are looking to take advantage of the opportunities this industry vertical can provide.  While other Accelerator programs provide some similar functions and many significant benefits,  REach®’s differentiating factor is a focus on education, mentorship and market exposure around access to the trillion dollar real estate market and the strategic expertise NAR can bring. 

 Please see above regarding who should apply

We already have investors. Can we still apply?

Please do!  We accept companies at all stages of investment from an early idea to a company with existing revenues and investors.  We have had a number of companies who have investors and/or were part of other Accelerator Programs applying to REach® If you have a product or service that could be applicable in the real estate vertical, we hope you consider applying. 

Should I apply if this idea/company is a part time gig?

No.  We expect founders and teams to be committed to their companies 100%

 

Program Benefits and Costs

REach® will accept six to 10 companies per year and will provide access to one of the world’s largest industries as well as access to NAR, one of the most powerful forces in that industry.   Participating companies will interact with some of the most highly regarded executives, digital entrepreneurs, and practitioners in the industry who run, manage or have sold companies with a combined multi-billion dollars of revenues in real estate alone.  See the Program Structure & Schedule for details

The value you should expect from partnering with REach®:

  • Association with NAR and its $4.5B brand
  • The opportunity to penetrate the market exponentially faster than you could on your own
  • Guidance to develop a defined strategy for your company within the Real Estate Market – the methods used to get there can be used for other markets
  • A vast network within the industry
  • Exposure to 1M REALTORS® through the National Association of REALTORS®' National and Global network

What are the terms of the program?

Participants will be responsible for providing a nominal marketing fee and small percentage of common stock.  Contact us for more details.

Why a marketing fee and equity?

The fee makes it possible for us to provide as much exposure to this market as possible; the equity component aligns us long term.    The marketing fee is going to cover online and offline ad placement, space on the tradeshow floor at NAR Midyear and Annual conferences, presence at other industry events and more.  It is not a money making program – the fees are designed to enable us to create as much exposure to our companies as possible

The equity portion of the program provides alignment.  As equity holders we have a long term interest in seeing you succeed.

How will the mentor sessions help my business?

Hear what the 2013 class got from their mentor sessions.

 

Is this a turnkey marketing program?

No.  We will work with NAR to offer a campaign to communicate and educate the industry about the REach® Program and its chosen class of 2013 companies.  We will recommend that you coordinate your own marketing campaign alongside ours to achieve the best results.   We can help you identify tools most effective for suiting this purpose within the constraints of your budget and stage of business.

What is your track record?

2013 was our Inaugural class  – our goal is to help make every one of the companies as successful as those within our NAR Family of Investments.  Hear what the 2013 graduates had to say about their experience in the program.

Location

Where is the program?   Do I have to relocate?  Will you provide workspace?

REach® is based at NAR’s headquarters in downtown Chicago. 

You do not need to co-locate to be part of the NAR REach® program however, for those teams that have the flexibility to do so, it is highly suggested.  We will offer you and your teams workspace, meeting space and fast, reliable wireless internet access free of charge in or near NAR’s headquarters.  Those companies that do take advantage of being onsite during the duration of the program will have the ability to more easily take advantage of NAR’s resources and have the advantage of learning from one another.

For those teams that are already established elsewhere and/or have less flexibility, we do expect that the founders will be present for key events and various points throughout the program.    Founders should expect to be onsite at REach® or to be attending other industry events approximately one week per month through the duration of the program. 

Application process

When can I apply?

See the http://www.narreach.com/schedule for application details and deadlines

Companies will be accepted on a rolling basis so your chances of acceptance decrease as the deadline approaches - get your applications in early!

Do I need a business plan?

Don’t waste your time writing a lengthy word document.  Your startup is fluid, a lengthy business plan becomes outdated the minute you hit save.  A stellar application will however have 5 – 10 slides defining your product, market and growth strategy for your business.  The application itself provides more detail on what we expect.

Are you taking applications from international companies?

Yes, if the entrepreneurs are both willing to come to the US for the program and are legally qualified to work here during that time.

Will you sign an NDA?

No.  We do not sign NDAs.  Be rest assured, however, that your application is shared only within the REach® Team.   As you embark on growing your business, keep in mind that ideas are cheap and it’s the execution and team that are the key determinants of success for any business.  You are more likely to benefit from sharing your idea  freely and gather as much feedback as possible to help you refine your plans than to be at risk from someone stealing your idea.  Tell us as much as you feel comfortable sharing without an NDA, keep in mind that we will not interview everyone so all we have to go on in our selection process is what you share with us in your application.    

Do you interview applicants?

Yes, we will select 15 – 20 companies to conduct in-person interviews which are likely to be held in Chicago.

Selection Process and Criteria

What type of companies do you look for?

The following are some of the criteria we will use when assessing your application:

  • We are most excited about technology companies that have applicability in multiple industries of which real estate is one of them.
  • All qualifying applicants will have applicability in the real estate vertical, and in particular can help provide value to our constituency
  • Teams will consist of entrepreneurs with the potential to build companies that are leaders in their market
  • Those companies with a shipping product are the most likely to be accepted but we welcome all applications that are highly scalable with huge potential. 
  • See NAR Family of Investments for the representative investments we have made in the past.