News from the Region

News

Raleigh startup aims to become one-stop shop for homebuilding

RALEIGH — From finding a lot to design and build, this Triangle startup is hoping to become a one-stop shop for homebuilding.

Meet Atmos, founded by former NC State students Nicholas Donahue, Austin Kahn, along with Trent Hedge and Matt Rastovac.

Headquartered in San Francisco with a satellite office in Raleigh, the fledgling firm says it wants to simplify and “democratize” the building process.

“Nearly everyone used to want to build a home; it was the American dream, but most people choose not to do it because of the complexity,” says its CEO Donahue, who comes from a line of homebuilders. His father worked as a contractor building subdivisions in North Carolina.

“While everything else has moved fully online, homebuilding is still the same in-person process,” he adds. “We are making the process simple enough that anyone can build the home of their dreams, modernizing and revitalizing the American dream.”

Atmos recently raised more than $2 million in a seed round from prominent venture capitalists, including Sam Altman of YC/OpenAI, Adam Nash of Wealthfront and JLL Spark.

Meanwhile, the startup is currently participating in the Y-Combinator accelerator based in California. It has been used to launch over 2,000 companies, including Airbnb, DoorDash and Instacart, among others.

BUILDING MADE SIMPLE

Ultimately, Atmos says it wants to make building a home as simple as a few clicks.

How it works: To use the platform, a client inputs the location for a new home and a floor plan for the site, and Atmos will find builders that best match the plan and coordinate the rest of the tasks to get the home built, including design, fixture packages and financing.

In addition, it partners with local realtors to help sell a client’s existing home. It’s still early days, but its focus cities are Raleigh-Durham and Charlotte.

“The pandemic has caused a large migration from major cities to emerging cities like Raleigh, Durham and Charlotte, which has caused a rise in demand,” says Donahue.

“This, in combination with tons of homeowners taking their homes off the market, has made it extremely hard to find quality housing, thus homeowners are converting from buying to building and when doing so are being forced to go online because of in-person restrictions. This has provided a huge opportunity for an online alternative to come into the space.”

Short-term, he says their focus is building out their core team and figuring out the best business model in Raleigh-Durham.

“Long-term, we want to redefine the way people live by enabling the next generation of homes and neighborhoods to exist,” he says.

Original Article Source: WRAL TechWire