Presented by T1
The real estate sector is notorious for its late adoption of technology, and up until recently, saw little funding from venture capital firms. But real estate tech has lately been exploding in popularity, as the demand for new solutions increasingly drives funding. Among the hottest properties is the formula pioneered by Zumbly, a groundbreaking search platform that aims to locate properties to build wealth, not debt. Forbes magazine's Thomas Herd sat down with Zumbly co-founder and CEO Jeb Carty, 28, to learn more about the company's origins, its bright future, and its expansion into new markets.
Tell us a little bit about Zumbly.
Zumbly is the answer to what millennials and real estate investors have been looking for. Whether you’re brand new to real estate or have been in the industry for 30 years, Zumbly will help you find the property that will make you the most money.
Where did the name come from?
Before we came up with the name, we went through a bunch of terrible ones including, but not limited to, Tremla, Investment Findr, Dinble, Chilago. When I heard the name Zumbly, it instantly clicked. Its derived from the word humble abode. The name came from a good friend of mine, Stephen Flynn, who owns a creative agency--Wunder Inc.
What was the inspiration behind Zumbly?
My pedigree is real estate. I grew up in a family of realtors and real estate investors. Real estate was a daily topic of conversation from as far back as I can remember. My brother Clay Carty and I both started to buy long term investment properties when we were in college. I was a realtor with Coldwell Banker in Beverly Hills looking for cash flow positive properties in Las Vegas. when the idea of Zumbly came to me. I loved the social side of being a realtor, but at heart I'm a builder. My passion is taking things from idea through whatever fruition looks like.
How did you get started with the project?
I started to do a lot of research, I mean a of research. I literally spent months learning everything that I possibly could. It was borderline unhealthy. I refer to it as my hermit period (haha.) But I learned a lot. I stopped working at Coldwell about a month into it and spent a lot of time simply validating the idea. My co-founder Joel Glenny came onto the project about a year later.
What is a mistake you made at the beginning that you laugh at now that you are more experienced?
In the beginning I was obsessed with getting into an accelerator. I had a mutual friend make the intro for me with one of the founders at Mucker Capital in Santa Monica. I went there and pitched thinking that i completely nailed it and that there was no way they could not want me…I was very wrong! Looking back I laugh at how little I knew and how unprepared I was.
What made you stop and think, “This will be a success”?
I really didn’t. I had my intuition but when it's all said and done, you really have no idea if anything is going to work until you launch, execute, and see what happens. You have to be comfortable with being uncomfortable.
What is a ritual you have when you need to get down to business?
One thing that really helps me is affirmations. Every night I drive to a top secret location in Malibu where i spend time practicing affirmations. I also spend a lot of time at the gym. These two activities really keep me centered and focused.
What’s the one thing you wish someone had told you when you started out?
I wish people had told me more about the journey of what it was like to be a founder. I've been doing this for three years now, but it would have been awesome if someone told me more of what that journey would be like. But that's just who I am as a person. When I get into something, I really get into it. No matter what someone had told me, I would have continued on.
Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia all make sense. But what inspired Zumbly's expansion into Australia?
It was extremely random. I had several people reach out to tell me about how well Zumbly would do in Australia, one of whom was Tim Nuttall, the now CEO of Zumbly AU. I just happened to be visiting a friend in Sydney when I thought why not reach out to this guy. We met up and had great chemistry and about a month later decided to move forward with the expansion. As it turns out, investing in real estate is part of the Australian culture. If you were to go to a barbecue with friends, you should be prepared to talk about what investment properties you have. It's just what they do.
Where do you see Zumbly in five years?
I would love for the company to become more global. The potential for the consumer to make money from short-term investment properties isn’t solely limited to the US. It would be awesome to see people using the platform globally.
For business inquiries or if you would like to learn more about Zumbly, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.