community round

CASE STUDY

Advancing financial security for all

How Doorvest took its mission to the next level by opening its Series A to the crowd

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  • On the heels of a $39M Series A in November 2021...
  • Doorvest invited its customers, vendors, and partners to invest.
  • In a month, they raised $205,308 from 303 investors
  • 40% of investors found out about Doorvest through the Community Round…

ADVANCING FINANCIAL SECURITY FOR ALL

We’ll have Doorvest Founder & CEO Andrew Luong take it from here →

Andrew Luong headshot

What is Doorvest?

Doorvest is a full-service real estate platform that allows our customers to remotely purchase single-family rental homes that generate rental income from day 1.

Our team sources the property, manages the renovations, facilitates the closing process, and finds qualified residents for a completely hands-off experience.

Three months after reserving a property on Doorvest, customers receive an entirely renovated home with an average cash-on-cash return of 6%.

Our mission is to advance financial security for everyone.

Through investment homeownership, Doorvest has enabled customers to gain access to an asset class (real estate) that 90% of millionaires ascribe as their wealth-builder. Our process is so simple that almost 70% of customers were first-time homebuyers, and 27% have returned for more homes.

Being relentlessly focused on the customer experience, obviously, led to customers.

Andrew LuongFounder & CEO at Doorvest

How we built a community of evangelists from day 1

Doorvest was built for customers every step of the way. Justin and I didn’t mean to start a company—on the contrary, we had been investing in rental properties ourselves while working at startups in the Bay, and we began to advise our friends and colleagues 1:1 on how to do the same. Over time, we realized that there was a pain in our community—namely, the difficulty of acquiring real estate for busy working professionals.

Unlike many incumbent real estate companies, we lead from demand rather than supply. To build Doorvest, we tested our funnel stage by stage. Do individuals want to go on our site? Check. Do people want to submit their information? Check. Are passive income, real estate, or rental homes even compelling to them? Check. We went deeper down the funnel until the demand met the supply, which is the actual real estate. Being relentlessly focused on the customer experience, obviously, led to customers.

We’re helping our customers make one of the largest purchases of their lives, and we operate the real estate for them. But in addition to owning a physical asset, they also get immeasurable, intangible benefits: the empowerment, the psychological safety, and the momentum to keep advancing toward financial security.

But our community is more than our customers (or Doorvesters, as we call them). Our community extends along our entire supply chain: the residents who live in the homes we service, the general contractors and subcontractors who help us renovate homes, our partner title companies and mortgage lenders, wholesalers, and more—not to mention our investors, advisors, and team.

Over time, we hope to positively impact all our stakeholders across the supply chain. We want all these individuals to participate in the upside of the value that they helped create.

We want all these individuals to participate in the upside of the value that they helped create.

Andrew LuongFounder & CEO at Doorvest

Why we decided to raise a Community Round

If you look at our cap table, even prior to Wefunder, you’ll see that we’ve taken on an enormous amount of really small checks from those in the community: either our customers, or folks that we advised on a personal level before Doorvest existed. We've always felt strongly about including as many people in our journey as possible, so even if it required more admin work, we've taken small checks from the beginning. When we heard about Wefunder, it was a natural fit.

The reason it’s rare to see startups taking so many individual checks at our stage is that it’s normally a lot of work to pull off—but what’s cool about Wefunder is that they consolidate all the investments into a singular vehicle with one signature.

Secondly, Wefunder, through Regulation Crowdfunding, has provided a vehicle for unaccredited investors to invest in private companies—a detail that’s really important to us.

Why did people invest?

"Former doorvest customer. Hopefully a customer again soon. Excited to be a small part of your future!"

Paul Buijs face

Paul Buijs

"Doorvest provides an investment opportunity unlike no other."

Long K. Lam face

Long K. Lam

"My Nephew was really excited about the opportunity, which is why I took a look. Upon doing some research, DOORVEST makes sense."

Steve Banks face

Steve Banks

team photo

Second-Order Effects with Doorvest Special Projects Lead Maggie Zheng

Maggie Zheng headshot

Affirming the Company Mission

At our All Hands, we presented all the comments that investors posted on our Community Round. Seeing that level of buzz and faith in the company made the team really excited… it affirmed that we’re building something gamechanging, and not just trying to buy up as many houses as we can.

Honestly, it was surprising how gratifying it was to pull this off. We're so proud of how we’ve opened up access, down to the way we decided to pare down investors [once we were oversubscribed]—we chose not to cancel any of them, but rather just pare down the last few. That way we could just maximize the amount of people who were involved.

It was so affirming to see that people believe in what we're building. After this round, we plan on doing a crowdfund with every round that we raise in the future.

Potential Partnerships

In many ways it’s still too early to know the second-order effects that will come of this. For now, we can say that other founders in our industry cold-invested to strike up a connection, and we’re still following up with each of these instances individually.

There's so much intangible that you get from running a campaign, and Wefunder makes it seamless. I highly encourage other companies to do it, too.

Andrew LuongFounder & CEO at Doorvest

Summary

Doorvest raised $205,308 from 303 investors during their first Community Round.

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Snapshot of Doorvest's Community Round (source wefunder.com/doorvest)

Community Round Stats

  • 75% investors were customers
  • $2,000 average investment
  • 70% of investments were less than $500

Before the raise

  • $39M Series A from Mucker Capital, Gaingels, and executives at Opendoor, Wealthfront

After the raise

  • 40% of investors heard about Doorvest through the Community Round
  • 69 praises from their community

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