Payload Keybox gets everyone paid faster and more securely: Tech Review

Payload Keybox is software for facilitating secure payments at multiple stages of the real estate deal, from earnest money to commissions. It’s a sharp, compelling solution to make deals more digital and get everyone paid faster.

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Payload Keybox is software to facilitate rapid, secure payments in all aspects of real estate transactions.

Platforms: Browser, mobile responsive
Ideal For: Brokerages, transaction software vendors, back-office software partners, title companies

Top selling points:

  • Easy integration with transaction tech
  • Payment auditing, accounting tools
  • Commission payments, agent invoicing
  • Fast easy onboarding

Top concern:

It all comes down to trust. While far more secure and easy than manual and traditional payments, the industry’s collective avoidance of electronic payments continues to stagnate the pace of business.

What you should know

Payload Keybox (Payload) is software for sending money to people in real estate deals. Buyers can send earnest money, brokers can send invoices to agents, and multiple payment sources can be used, even Apple Pay and Google Pay. The company was founded in 2019 and already serves an array of industries that rely on securely transferring large sums of money.

This is one of those products that to most agents is kind of boring. It’s a behind-the-scenes bit of coding that won’t get you leads or build you a landing page.

But it will get you paid faster. Like, way faster. So, you should absolutely pay attention, and advocate, for products like this. These are the tools that really matter right now, the ones that build small linkages between gaping inefficiencies in the deal.

The quicker an earnest money deposit reaches its trust account, the more confident the seller is. After all, as I always say: time kills deals. Thus, the more technology the industry adopts that connects the operational schisms, the less time it will take to reach closing.

So, if I haven’t made it clear, as far as I’m concerned, any product that can securely and efficiently help shrink the real estate transaction is doing the work of whatever lord you look to.

Payload is making inroads quickly. It integrates with dotloop, Skyslope and DocuSign Rooms, three big names in digital transaction management.

For example, in Skyslope, the listing agent can “request deposit” within its transaction interface, and an email is sent linking to the portal.

Payload doesn’t require one of those mainstream transaction systems to be used, however, and it can be white-labeled to a brokerage. Earnest money payments can be transacted via the buyer-initiated payment link. It’ll ask for property details, which can be pulled via linked MLS accounts. Payload currently works with MRED, one of the nation’s largest MLSs.

Users will fill in name, email, agent’s name and the payment amount. If there is an MLS connection, the MLS number will be tagged automatically, linking the payment to backend property records. If the EMD has to go directly to a title company, here’s what it would look like to the buyer, using a live example of a Payload client.

Brokerages that white-label Payload will have a secure URL to send to clients that keeps it under the company’s brand and offers options according to location and payment type.

The user interface on the backend is pretty basic, but that’s OK because this is all about payments, not blog content. Users want to see what’s coming and going to who, when and for how much. It’s all there, along with charts mapping volume, average payments and month-over-month comparisons, among other quick-to-digest metrics.

You can manage all your payment links, and customize them, as well as use Payload to know which customers used it or not. There’s plenty here for you accountants to use when reconciling and exporting to existing financial tools.

In terms of accounting, Payload links directly Brokermint and Reeazily of MoxiWorks for now. And while there are a few steps involved in setting up what deal data you’d like these reports to output and getting it to your official accounting system if not one of the aforementioned, I expect Payload will find ways to make that even easier in pending updates, as well connect more industry partners. It’s no reason to not choose the software.

I could get into online security terminology and parameters and the like, but how would a company like this remain in business if the financial protection of its users wasn’t a priority? Know that Payload uses the highest known, banking-level forms of encryption for digital funds transfers.

If the MRED relationship doesn’t tip you off, know that Payload is used by notable indy brokerages Baird & Warner Florida’s The Keyes Company, and Berkshire Hathaway’s Long & Foster. They’re also working with a number of big national brokers and title companies.

Expect more industry partnerships to be announced soon, on both the technology integration and brokerage fronts.

Lastly, as a reminder, remember that wire fraud remains an incredibly lucrative form of crime. It keeps happening, and every buyer or seller you’re working with today — literally right now — is at risk.

But go ahead, keep thinking it can’t happen to your deal.

And by all means, keep faxing copies of checks and calling it digital and hoping your preemptive, “We will never send wire instructions via email” email signature note is enough.


Have a technology product you would like to discuss? Email Craig Rowe

Craig C. Rowe started in commercial real estate at the dawn of the dot-com boom, helping an array of commercial real estate companies fortify their online presence and analyze internal software decisions. He now helps agents with technology decisions and marketing through reviewing software and tech for Inman.

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