Weekly Radar #305: Hooking Commission Disclosures, Chokepoint of Innovation is Regulation, the Next Chapter: Building Profitable AI

Weekly Radar #305: Hooking Commission Disclosures, Chokepoint of Innovation is Regulation, the Next Chapter: Building Profitable AI

In this week's Weekly Radar, we cover:

  • HUD announced a potential pilot for direct cash housing assistance to address Section 8 challenges, inspired by successful programs in Philadelphia, D.C., and Rochester, and tech innovations from Propel and Code for America.
  • At the Innovative Housing Showcase, regulators and innovators highlighted the need for off-site building standardization, DOE's $13.5B investment in home energy solutions, and HUD's $30B for the Housing Choice Voucher Program, while noting public-private collaboration and regulatory challenges.
  • BRESI aims to simplify finding branded residences amid a 150% rise in luxury-branded multifamily buildings, though questions remain about community building and the need for independent luxury certifications.
  • Nesthook, a platform for agents to communicate commissions, faces legal challenges and skepticism about its viability, especially given DOJ opposition and the difficulty of gaining widespread agent adoption without MLS support.
  • Proptech and AEC's future hinges on tailored AI solutions, unique data, the growing role of hardware, tech supply chain risks, the skilled labor gap, and startups prioritizing profitability.
  • The GEM Proptech Index had a combined market cap of $232.713B, a .11% increase from the previous week. 

As always, links surrounded by the ❇️ emoji indicate exclusive GEM Diamond content. If you would like to have access to all links, please consider GEM Diamond membership.

Geek Estate Blog Recap:

To Lunar Infinity and Beyond on the National Mall
Part of our issue in addressing the US housing shortage is the real estate industry’s ability to efficiently and affordably build new inventory. To this end, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development hosted its fourth annual Innovative Housing Showcase on the National Mall in Washington…
Vertical Software Benchmarking
For those interested in benchmarking your company’s stack, Michael Yang and the team at OMERS Ventures are partnering with Mosaic, Benchmarkit and Luke Sophinos to gather the data for a set of cross-industry benchmarks for vertical SaaS and software businesses. By participating in this survey, you’ll help yourselves and other founders like you: Know your goalposts…
Vendor Management on the Road(s) to Centralized Maintenance
[Editor’s Note: Originally published on Wreno.io.] For the last few years, multifamily property managers have been pinched by surging interest rates, rising resident expectations, and falling revenue margins — trends that have left some industry leaders gloomy. In the latest 20for20 survey of multifamily leaders,…
Why has PadSplit survived?
[Editor’s note: Originally published on One Room at a Time.] As many of you know, the co-living industry has seen its fair share of challenges and failures in recent years. Companies like Common, Quarters, Starcity, and Ollie have all shut down, leaving residents displaced, staff…
Efficient Real Estate Deal Management
[Note from editor: The “Mastermind Showcase” highlights companies and news from members of GEM Diamond. Today’s showcase: Trackxi] Trackxi is a real estate deal management software platform for real estate agents and teams. It simplifies deal management and task tracking with the following offerings: Transaction…

Transmission Recap:
Most recently, Drew Meyers detailed how value aggregation playing out in the evolving brokerage landscape, and provide a few ideas for revenue tech leaders to use the strategy in their GTM efforts. Before that, Drew Meyers explored how Demi’s composting solution for urban multi-family residences could help lead to a food waste-free world.


By: Hannah Gable, Ivory Innovations

Earlier this month, the HUD Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy Development Brian McCabe shared that HUD is exploring a cash housing assistance pilot as a potential replacement to traditional housing vouchers. McCabe made this announcement on a panel at the Guaranteed Income Now conference in Detroit. If approved, the voucher subsidy would go directly to the renter instead of to the landlord. This comes in response to the challenges facing Section 8 voucher holders – in some cities, over 70% of landlords refuse to rent to households with vouchers. 

Many are already testing direct cash payments for housing with promising results: Philadelphia and PHLHousing+, Washington D.C. and DC Flex, and Rochester’s guaranteed income program.

Image generator: Magic studioPrompt: apartment building with for rent sign

HUD adjusting the format of rental assistance benefits would be a meaningful reform to the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program – something that academic, private, and public sector leaders have been calling for – and provide an exciting opportunity for technological innovation. We see similar innovations across safety net programs, specifically with organizations like Propel and Code for America, who are building streamlined, user-friendly mobile applications to help households access government benefits, like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Many landlords complain about the bureaucracy involved in getting approved and receiving payment through HUD. If HUD implements this change, there is an opportunity to re-imagine the process for how low-income households engage with these benefits, and integrate technology in a thoughtful and equitable way to improve the experience.