Best in the world and for the world
Hooray! We are now a Certified B Corporation. We recently sent out a press release to announce the certification and had an event to celebrate. Check out the release below to catch up on what this means for you and for Houwzer.
PHILADELPHIA, PA – Houwzer, an innovative, tech-enabled real estate brokerage startup working to change the industry for the good of consumers, agents, and the community, announced today that the company has become a Certified B Corporation. This makes Houwzer the very first B Corporation real estate brokerage in the entire world. The certification is awarded to companies using business as a force for good by meeting above average standards of social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability.
“Houwzer is the most disruptive startup the real estate space has seen since Zillow. But a big part of the disruption is changing the industry for good,” said Mike Maher, CEO of Houwzer. “We’re not the big bad wolf on the block. Houwzer provides incredible stability for agents compared to an industry that churns 90% of its agents after only 24 months. Houwzer provides a huge competitive advantage to home sellers saving them millions of dollars in listing commissions making their asset more liquid during this important, life-changing event. And last but not least, Houwzer is laser-focused on becoming the best real estate company in the world and for the world – working for the good of our customers, our agents, and our communities.”
To become a Certified B Corporation, B Lab, the nonprofit that certifies and supports B Corporations, conducted a rigorous evaluation of Houwzer and determined the services and practices met the comprehensive performance standards to qualify for certification. Now, unlike traditional corporations, Houwzer will join other Certified B Corporations and will be legally required to consider the impact of their decisions on their employees, suppliers, community, consumers, and environment.
“I am proud of the business we have created and the positive effects it has on the community and real estate industry,” said Krystal Eason, Director of Marketing for Houwzer. “The work we are doing is not just about making money, but about bringing a correction to the market in a way that is better for our clients, our hardworking agents, and the communities we live in. Becoming B Certified gives us the additional accountability and transparency needed to prove what we are doing is more than just talk.”
The major business practices that qualified Houwzer for certification was its approach to its workers and the community. Unlike traditional real estate brokerages, Houwzer uses salaried agents, provides healthcare benefits, allows employee ownership, and gives paid time off. Houwzer has also developed the Rule of 10 – giving back 2.5% of its profits to nonprofit partners, spending 2.5% of employee time volunteering in the community, and allowing for at least 5% employee ownership. Under this policy, employees volunteer 50 hours a year in their local community and are provided opportunities for company stock. In 2015, Houwzer donated a portion of profits to Coded by Kids, a Philadelphia nonprofit dedicated to provided free tech education to inner-city youth with computer programming courses.
Houwzer joins the ranks of other social and environmental business leaders in the marketplace including over 1,900 Certified B Corporations from 130 industries in a variety of areas such as web design, renewable energy, fashion, food and beverage, and consulting. Notable B Corps include Warby Parker, Patagonia, Ben & Jerry’s, Etsy, New Belgium Brewery, and Dr. Bronner’s.
Houwzer is a full-service, tech-enabled residential real estate brokerage. We are the industry’s first commission-free listing model for home sellers with an experienced team of listing and buyer agent specialists. As the first B Corporation real estate brokerage in the world, all Houwzer agents are salaried employees. We generate 10x more profit than the traditional brokerage, while saving consumers thousands on the sale of their home, providing the much needed liquidity during this important, life-changing event. To-date, we have saved our clients over $1.2 million in listing commissions. By leveraging technology and focusing on transparency, Houwzer is rebuilding real estate brokerage from the ground up to create a more competitive marketplace while building consumer trust.
About B Corp
Certified B Corporations are leaders of a global movement of people using business as a force for good. They meet the highest standards of overall social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability and aspire to use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. There are more than 1,900 Certified B Corporations in over 130 industries and 50 countries with 1 unifying goal – to redefine success in business.
About B Lab
B Lab is a nonprofit organization that serves a global movement of people using business as a force for good. Its vision is that one day all companies compete not only to be the best in the world, but the Best for the World® and as a result society will enjoy a more shared and durable prosperity. B Lab drives this systemic change by: