Housebuild.ie lays foundations for home build online empire

More than 2,000 professionals from bricklayers to architects have joined HouseBuild, a new digital hub for home build and improvements.

Housebuild.ie aims to provide homeowners with direct access to construction professionals, products and services in one place.

Since going live in February, Housebuild.ie has signed up over 2,000 professionals nationwide, ranging from bricklayers, plumbers and carpenters, to surveyors, engineers and architects.

“The plan is to expand into the UK later this year with the launch of Housebuild.co.uk. From there, we hope to have the Housebuild platform live in the US by 2024”

More than 20,000 unique users have logged on to the site so far to search for tradespeople in their area, buy from product partners such as EZ Living Furniture and Tile Merchant, or browse a dedicated inspiration section for home decor and interior design ideas.

Build it and they will dot-com

Man in black and blue check shirt standing in front of new build house.

Housebuild.ie co-founder Eoghain Ryan

Housebuild.ie also has a Construction Hub with practical guides and easy-to-follow ‘how to’ videos on everything from building regulations, planning, and costing to energy efficient, Passive House and NZEB projects.

Housebuild.ie has been developed at a cost of €450,000 in conjunction with James Whelton, the Cork-born founder of CoderDojo, and Joe Smyth, co-founder of Altocloud, the Galway SaaS company acquired by US firm Genesys.

Both Whelton and Smyth have joined the Board of Directors at Housebuild.ie, which is headquartered in Salthill and employs 15 people.

Eoghain Ryan runs the business with his sister Ailish Ryan, who is co-director, and Kevin McDonagh, an engineer who has joined as MD following a successful 20-year career in life sciences.

“There is no comparable site in Ireland or the UK like Housebuild.ie, offering everything you can possibly think of in one single online ecosystem,” said Eoghain Ryan.

“We have everything you need for home-builds, improvements, and decor. From tradespeople you can rate and review, to furniture, fixtures, fittings, and simple how-to guides designed to take the fear out of any project — it’s all there, and it’s badly needed.” 

Whelton previously worked with Eoghain and Ailish Ryan on the development of iRevise.com (formerly Mocks.ie), the study site they run together with their brother Pádraig.

Launched in 2009, iRevise.com has since become Ireland’s biggest online educational resource for Junior and Leaving Cert students. Also live in the UK, the site has so far been used by 900,000 students in both markets. 

Eoghain and Ailish also run Ryan and Associates, an engineering consultancy in Salthill specialising in fire safety.

The siblings launched a free mobile app for construction professionals in 2015, offering a one-stop shop for building regulations.

Inspired by Eoghain’s stint as Assistant Chief Fire Officer with the county councils in both Cork and Westmeath, the app will now be rolled into the Building Regulations, Planning and Guidelines section of Housebuild.ie, adding further value for professionals using the site. 

Ailish Ryan, Co-Founder and Director of Housebuild.ie, said:

“There is a huge amount of due diligence in residential builds now but finding all the guidelines and detailed drawings you need to ensure a job is done right isn’t easy for professionals in the sector. We’ve been able to put it altogether in a simple searchable format.”

The business model for Housebuild.ie includes five separate revenue streams: subscriptions for professionals profiled on the site, advertising revenue from consumer brands such as EZ Living and Tile Merchant, an affiliate sales programme for smaller product suppliers; and partnerships with financial and insurance providers.

The Housebuild.ie team have ambitious plans for their tech start-up. “The plan is to expand into the UK later this year with the launch of Housebuild.co.uk. From there, we hope to have the Housebuild platform live in the US by 2024,” said Ryan.