Written by Robert Leitch.
Anyone in real estate will tell you the three most important things: location, location, location. The idiom reflects people’s wish to live and work in desirable neighborhoods, and the limited amount of real estate in those areas often creates heated competition. As a result, many homebuyers make rushed decisions and settle for a house that may not be the best fit. Casamatic is here to help homebuyers find the property that is just right for them.
“For many people, their perfect home is out there, they’re just not looking in the right places,” said Alex Bowman, co-founder and CEO of Casamatic. “Our goal is to change the home search process and save people time.”
Think of Casamatic as the eHarmony of home buying. The web-based service matches people to their perfect home instantly— all the user has to do is answer questions about their lifestyle and the types of homes they prefer.
“We ask questions about what our users enjoy doing, what food they like, where they work, how long their ideal commute is and what their ideal yard size is,” said Bowman. “We use those answers to pull a list of homes currently on the market that are most fitting to the user’s wants and needs.”
This personalization is the key differentiator between Casamatic and existing internet real estate search sites.
“People get so frustrated when they go on popular home search sites because they get thousands of results at a time,” said Bowman. “The only way to narrow these searches is by number of bedrooms or square footage. They don’t take personality into account at all. Our mission is to help users find homes faster and with a lot less stress.”
Once a user selects a home from their Casamatic list, the service instantly coordinates a showing for that home with a real estate agent. The real estate agent will not only show the home, but will also help with the remainder of the home-buying process if the buyer is interested in putting in an offer.
Bowman, who has worked for BlackBerry and Amazon, lived in Seattle prior to starting Casamatic in Ohio. He moved back to Cincinnati after hearing of the growth in the city’s entrepreneurial community.
“I was seeing Cincinnati startups like ChoreMonster and Roadtrippers gain momentum,” said Bowman. “Seeing how successful those companies were, all while being based in the city that I grew up in and love, made the decision to move back a no-brainer.”
Bowman and his co-founder Chris Ridenour started Casamatic in December 2014 and entered Cincinnati’s OCEAN, the nation’s first faith-based accelerator program, in January 2015.
“OCEAN took a huge gamble on us because we were just an idea at that point,” said Bowman. “We ended the program in April 2015 after transitioning that idea into a product that was actually solving a problem. We couldn’t have evolved so quickly without the OCEAN team.”
As Bowman and Ridenour continued to develop their product after OCEAN, the two knew that they needed help to quickly grow their business and refine their identity. They turned to The Brandery, a nationally ranked accelerator and Ohio Third Frontier partner in Cincinnati, for help.
“We came to The Brandery because we knew a lot of other startup founders in Cincinnati who had found a ton of value in the program,” said Bowman. “We knew that The Brandery was what we needed to get from the stage where you have a product to one where you are ready to raise funding and scale your business.”
Casamatic is currently raising its seed round of funding and was recently selected to be a resident company at Cincinnati’s 84.51°, where Bowman and Ridenour will receive mentorship from top executives in the Cincinnati area. The company plans to soon expand its services beyond Cincinnati to Chicago, and will focus on additional scaling after closing its seed round. The ultimate goal is to have Casamatic connecting people to their ideal homes in cities across the country.