Airbnb’s Official Arrival as a Real Estate Company

Airbnb’s Official Arrival as a Real Estate Company

[Note from editor: This is adapted from this week’s Weekly Radar for Geek Estate Mastermind members. Given it’s industry significance, I thought it worthwhile to publish publicly.]

Airbnb will start designing and building housing prototypes in 2019 as part of Backyard, a new Samara project announced this week.

Backyard is an initiative to prototype new ways that homes can be built and shared, guided by an ambition to realize more humanistic, future-oriented, and waste-conscious design.

According to Joe Gebbia’s interview with FastCompany, it’s about more than just ADUs: “small prefabricated dwellings could be in the roadmap, but so are green building materials, standalone houses, and multi-unit complexes. Think of Backyard as both a producer and a marketplace for selling major aspects of the home, in any shape it might come in.”

I understand I’m far more familiar with Airbnb than most as a result of bootstrapping a private home sharing platform. However, I’m still flabbergasted that the multi billion dollar darling child of travel has somehow flown under the real estate industry’s radar for so long. After all, they are one database field away from being the largest rentals platform in the world and one of their investors, Marc Andreessen, said publicly — more than 5 years agoAirbnb is transformational for real estate.

The real estate industry will look back at this announcement years from now as Airbnb’s arrival as a real estate company to be reckoned with.

Welcome to real estate, Airbnb.

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