We looked at the 100+ real estate crowdfunding platforms out there and ranked them according to the amount of website traffic. Our source is Alexa ranking, which is based on the amount of traffic compared to all other websites in the world. Because real estate crowdfunding is so new, there are a lot of websites making a run at it. Some of them receive almost no traffic and are unlikely to make it. Others have done quite well. This is a US-focused list so we filtered out the websites that targeted other countries. We also removed websites that were intended for general crowdfunding like raising money for small businesses, rather than being just focused on real estate. Finally, we did not count any website that was just an aggregrator that just listed investment opportunities available on other real estate crowdfunding platforms, without listing any investment opportunities itself.
There seem to be at least 3 major focus areas of real estate crowdfunding sites. Some sites just focus on one while others have more than one focus. The most simple is probably the single family fix and flip loan — basically a high interest 6-12 month loan for investors to acquire single family homes then fix them up and flip them for a higher price. Hard money lending has existed for a number of years and sites like FundMyFlip, Patch of Land, and RealtyShares focus on this sector. The underlying collateral (a single family home) tends to be the most liquid real estate available and can be sold fairly easily if the loan goes bad. Also, these are structured as loans so there is no equity upside on the appreciation of the property. The second focus would be buying properties that are stabilized and already generating income such as single tenant retail properties or apartment buildings that are leased up. Rich Uncles and Crowd Street are two examples of sites that tend to focus on these type of assets. These properties are already generating monthly income and have the means to pay a dividend or interest to the investor. The third major focus area would be the higher risk area of development or buying underperforming assets such as a hotel or apartment building with high vacancy, then making improvements to the property to try and increase income. Some of those investments are extremely high risk. Prodigy Network and Fundrise list several of these offerings.
We looked at over 125 real estate crowdfunding websites and the 15 websites on the list are the leaders in website traffic. We also found 2 other sites that met our criteria and had sub-2 million Alexa rankings: Asset Avenue and Sharestates.
|Website||Alexa Traffic Rank (lower is better)||Focus||Debt or Equity||Sample Investment|
|1.||Fundrise||75,518||Development and redevelopment projects||Mostly debt||Senior debt on a Condo pre-development loan in Atlanta; $5K min.|
|2.||RealtyShares||105,716||Single family and small multi-family rehab and flips||Debt and Preferred Equity||1st position mortgage on a single family home renovation in CT; $5K min.|
|3.||Realty Mogul||167,935||Single family rehabs and commercial properties||Debt and equity||Office investment in IL with 2-5 year hold; $5K min.|
|4.||Patch of Land||243,450||Single family and apartment fix and flips||Debt||12 month loan on fix and flip project in San Francisco; 11% proj. APR, $5K min|
|5.||RealCrowd||392,347||Retail, self-storage, apartments, industrial||Equity||Acquisition of a self-storage portfolio in MS, 2 year hold; $25K min|
|6.||CrowdStreet||537,269||Various commercial||Equity and Preferred Equity||Recapitalization of Holiday Inn Express in MO; $10K min.|
|7.||GroundFloor||598,332||Single family residential fix and flips||Debt||12 month hard money loan for fix and flip project in Atlanta; $5K min.|
|8.||PeerStreet||683,908||Single family and 4 or fewer unit multi-family||Debt||Small loan on Northern CA single family fix and flip; $1K min.|
|9.||Prodigy Network||702,324||Manhattan real estate acquisition and development||Equity and Debt||Acquisition of building in NYC for condo development; $10K min.|
|10.||EarlyShares||716,547||Hotel and multi-family||Equity and Debt||Equity investment in a fund to acquire apartments in Philadelphia; $20K min.|
|11.||iFunding||754,779||Various commercial||Debt and Preferred Equity||118-unit multi-family development project in Sacramento; $5K min.|
|12.||PeerRealty||889,790||Multi-family and retail in Midwest||Equity and Preferred Equity||Net-leased single tenant building (Red Lobster) in Chicago; $5K min.|
|13.||Acquire Real Estate||1,121,133||Hotels, retail, industrial||Equity||Walmart anchored shopping center in FL; $2.5K min.|
|14.||Rich Uncles||1,223,461||Single tenant net leased retail in California; CA investors only||Equity||Single Tenant Del Taco portfolio in Southern California; $5K min.|
|15.||FundThatFlip||1,248,748||Single family fix and flip loans||Debt||$200K loan for fix and flip in NJ; $5K min.|