Better.com, the online mortgage lender, made the decision to lay off its entire real estate team and subsequently discontinue the unit, according to a TechCrunch report. These layoffs are said to have impacted approximately 4,000 employees in the United States and India. The company has previously conducted multiple rounds of layoffs leading up to this development.
Less than a year after the previous round of layoffs, the company is undergoing its second wave of job cuts. In December 2021, the company gained attention when it laid off approximately 900 employees, accounting for around 9% of its workforce, during a widely-shared Zoom call.
Amidst a cooling mortgage market, Better.com has implemented its latest round of layoffs. The rise in interest rates and the deceleration of the housing market have contributed to a decrease in mortgage demand, adversely affecting Better.com's operations.
An employee who was among those laid off from the company shared that they received minimal or no severance package, following a significant salary reduction of over 50% in November, which was implemented with the intention of securing their jobs for the future.
As per reports, Better.com had plans to shift from an in-house agent strategy to a partnership agent model. In March 2023, Amazon entered into an agreement with Better.com, enabling its employees to utilise their shares as a down payment for a mortgage.
According to Garg, Amazon employees have the opportunity to secure home financing without having to relinquish their shares.
"Even though equity is a valuable asset, it is considered ineligible by most banks and financial institutions when calculating the necessary down payment on a home," he said.
Better.com stated that the volatile conditions in the mortgage market created an extremely challenging operational landscape for certain organisations within the sector.