Week of January 31, 2000
  Editor's Choice Web Pick
   of the Week

Another Small Step for Mankind's Mesh of Clicks and Bricks

Clearly, the dot.coms' clicks are fast turning into bricks (e.g. Amazon, America Online). Here, then, is a further twist, a promising web site that's simply called redbricks.com.

Redbricks at first glance looks particularly like a godsend for property owners, many of whom have spent days sweating bullets while awaiting word on the progress of their loan applications. One of Redbrick's most valuable services is that it takes the loan process online.

Redbricks allows property owners to access multiple lenders simultaneously. Those lenders originate and process commercial and multifamily real estate loan products through the site.

Users fill out a relatively simple electronic loan application. Once that online application is submitted, Redbricks promises that lenders will return real quotes within 48 hours. (And our guess is that the time for loan processing will steadily decline as online demand increases.) Borrowers can also continually monitor online the due diligence underwriting process for their business.

Redbricks isn't a panacea, and it doesn't promise to be one. But the idea of online loan real estate processing is patently solid.

For the moment, Redbricks is starting relatively small, which is probably another very solid idea.

At the moment, the site offers access to only some 20-odd lenders, and they're all U.S.-based. This, too, will likely change, with the landscape continually expanding as online real estate transactions increasingly become an idea whose time has come.

Online Services Also Include News, Industry
Expertise, and Service Provider Connections

While its online loan processing (grouped under "LoanConnection") looks to be the real sizzle on this site, Redbricks also has a number of other valuable offerings, including:

  • "News," which provides headlined content on a variety of business-related categories. Both current and archived content is searchable by key words, or users can use the site's personalization feature to receive news only in the categories in which they're interested. This area of the site also offers daily updates of interest rates.

  • "Services," which, like some other sites in the industry, pairs users up online with service providers and product suppliers. Users can get online quotes from both. This site area also lists job openings, and users can also post their own job listings.

  • "Industry Expertise," which is a broad site area covering market research reports, maps, trade association calendars and more. Here, you'll also find online events like regular "Meet the Experts" sessions.

Expanded Offerings on Tap

Redbricks' major domos are already planning to expand the site's offerings. In the coming months, they promise to expand the site's loan programs and its connections with service providers. In addition, Redbricks promises that "you will soon find additional opportunities for connecting with clients, managing real estate processes and gathering information from your personalized Redbricks homepage."

To paraphrase Pink Floyd, all in all it's just another click in the redbrick wall.



©2000 Conway Data, Inc. All rights reserved. Data is from many sources and is not warranted to be accurate or current.