by Peter Jurmu
July 26, 2018

As a digital-first home lender providing white-glove mortgage service, Eave is in a unique position to innovate in the industry. Through an approach that is mindful of the human side of home loans, the company’s collaborative and diverse team already is making a difference in the lives of Coloradoans and prospective buyers around the country.

Eave’s product and mission are one and the same: simplifying and dramatically shortening a notoriously complex, stressful and often lengthy step in a buyer's journey toward owning a home. And the company has a clear sense of what — and who — they need to realize that vision.

 

Eave Team Meeting
Photography by haley samuelson
Eave's team collaborating in the office
Photography by haley samuelson
Eave Team Hangout
Photography by haley samuelson

 

 

YEAR FOUNDED: 2015

EMPLOYEES: 22 employees nationally; 3 based in Denver, with the rest divided between the San Francisco Bay Area and Brooklyn.

WHAT THEY DO: Provide mortgage services for luxury homes in Colorado; Eave aims to make their bidders competitive with those offering cash bids.

WHERE THEY DO IT: Denver, CO (in the WeWork Lohi).

WHO THEY DO IT FOR: People who want or need to take out a home loan instead of paying cash.

PERKS: Flex work schedules, 6-month, gender-neutral parental leave, health insurance and sabbatical.

FUN FACT: Eave's leadership busted out custom temporary tattoos as a surprise for the team when the company celebrated closing their first loan.

 

Eave's team collaborates in the office

Jack McCambridge Portrait

 

Jack McCambridge, Co-founder and CEO

Jack McCambridge works to provide the best possible mortgage experience as the company's chief executive and co-founder.

BEYOND WORK: McCambridge is an avid dancer and karaoke singer—"and certainly not because I'm good at either," he adds. Instead, they help him let go of ego.

 

What is unique about Eave's approach to home mortgages? 

Mortgages affect people in deeply personal ways. To fulfill our mission, we need to be technically excellent at producing a mortgage, which is an intricate process. We set out to build a technical platform and user experience that does not replace human interaction, but instead enables our team members and our customers to interact effortlessly and instill confidence and certainty with our clients during this intimidating financial decision.

We’ve never set out to “fully automate” the mortgage industry. We want talented underwriters to be empowered to fully understand our clients’ financial picture and provide a tailored solution for them.

 

Mortgages affect people in deeply personal ways. To fulfill our mission, we need to be technically excellent at producing a mortgage, which is an intricate process."

 

How are you overcoming the biggest challenges faced during product development, deployment and company growth?

We’ve been constantly evolving and developing ways to fulfill our original vision: empowering creditworthy homebuyers to buy like all-cash buyers. The biggest challenge from the start of Eave has been staying true to that vision and finding team members, investors and partners who deeply understand our mission. After two years, we’ve proven that our approach is merely difficult — not impossible — and is also loved by homebuyers.

 

What characteristics have you noticed are critical for someone to be a good culture fit at Eave?

We look for “Eave elegant” solutions. To do this, you need to be interested in learning from others, investigating complex questions on your own and forgiving yourself and others when we don’t nail the answer the first time. While mundane on the surface, mortgages are a real-world, human problem. When something goes wrong, peoples' homes can be taken away or the home purchase can fail. Getting to a solution requires the directly involved team’s curiosity and drive, as well as the work of other team members to ensure we provide every Eave client with an excellent experience.

 

Laura Veith Team

Laura Veith Portrait

 

Laura Veith, Head of People and Marketing

In addition to pitching in with marketing, Eave's head of people and marketing oversees all aspects of culture, diversity, recruiting, unconscious bias combat, training, development, compensation and gender pay equity. "And of course," Veith adds, "making sure people are paid, insured and happy."

BEYOND WORK: Veith is an avid distance runner. She runs almost every day to clear her head, focus on people in her life and generate new ideas. "Running forces me out of the office," she says, "and to step back and be reflective."

 

How has the culture at Eave developed as the company has scaled?

One of the main reasons I joined Eave was because of how much focus there is on culture. I was the tenth employee hired. Most companies don’t bring on someone to lead HR for nine people. But Eave deeply believes that culture should scale in tandem with other parts of a business, not brought on as an afterthought.

 

We're scaling and growing, which means we're changing and evolving. Our culture is too, of course. But we have a solid foundation that supports this change."

 

This has allowed us to build a really solid foundation that has prevented a ton of issues I’ve seen other companies hit. For example, we implemented gender pay equity guardrails early on, so this hasn’t ever been an issue at Eave. We’re scaling and growing, which means we’re changing and evolving. Our culture is too, of course. But we have a solid foundation that supports this change. So the things we see shifting in our culture are meaningful and positive and joyful.

 

What characteristics have you noticed are critical for someone to be a good culture fit at Eave?

The most important qualities for success at Eave are kindness, thoughtfulness, respect for others and commitment to our mission. If you are a human who has these four characteristics, the sky's the limit! Our leadership team supports growth and evolution for those who are willing to rise to the challenge, who genuinely care about those they work with, and who are committed to changing the mortgage experience.

 

 

Eave's team working in the office

Christina Nugent Portrait

 

Christina Nugent, Head of Market Development

As head of market development, Nugent is building and executing a sales strategy for Eave that breaks into Colorado, and that the company can replicate in each new market launched. 

BEYOND WORK: Nugent travels and practices gratitude. Both help her maintain a healthy balance and make her a better leader, she says.

 

What inspires you about your work at Eave?

I believe the product is special and that it will make a positive difference for homebuyers and realtors. My passion is fulfilled by having the pleasure to develop everything from sales processes, goals and action plans to marketing value props, programs and partnerships, as well as attending industry events.

As the first employee hired in market development, creating awareness of our brand and sales channels to bring Eave to the market was my top priority. In order for our product to be adopted, establishing new relationships with realtors and brokerage owners who can benefit by learning about Eave and sharing it with their clients who need lending options is essential.

 

The team at Eave is modernizing the way you look at getting a mortgage for your next home purchase...[it's] a very powerful tool for the homebuyer."

 

What is unique about Eave's approach to home mortgages? 

The team at Eave is modernizing the way you look at getting a mortgage for your next home purchase. We provide the opportunity for homebuyers to get fully underwritten before they go shopping, which, in my opinion, is a very powerful tool for the homebuyer when compared to the old process of getting your mortgage underwriting done after you sign a purchase contract.

 

Our leadership team supports growth and evolution for those who are willing to rise to the challenge [...] and who are committed to changing the mortgage experience."

 

What excites you most about working at Eave?

Our team isn’t here to just work and build a product. We want to make a difference and make a change. One of the biggest challenges that I’ve experienced was that, while I knew we had great product and a passionate team, I was unclear on how to tell everyone about it and establish trust quickly. But now, we have become a preferred place where realtors send their clients to get financing because they know how we operate and that we have the best interests of their clients in mind. By the end of this year, I envision us saying we are ready to break into our next market.

 

 

Miana Campbell Team

Miana Campbell Portrait

 

Miana Campbell, Market Development Relationship Manager

In her role as a market development relationship manager, Campbell generates new business opportunities and drives growth by building lasting relationships with real estate professionals and brokerages. 

BEYOND WORK: Campbell has traveled to almost 30 countries. She seeks experiences that push her out of her comfort zone and provide new perspectives, whether through backpacking in Iceland or volunteering for a local clean-up.

 

What inspires you about your work at Eave?

Previously, I was a high net worth financial advisor in the San Francisco Bay Area. I had coached hundreds of individuals on whether to buy luxury homes and realized throughout the process how painful financing was. Many of my colleagues refused to work with clients on the mortgage process and advisors knew they didn’t want to be tied to such an awful experience. What I did not expect was the lack of understanding there is in the mortgage space by consumers.

We have changed the typical mortgage application process, shortening it to a 30-minute application, a 24-hour turnaround on a full underwrite and a guaranteed close in three weeks. That is something to get excited about. We also work extremely well with the enterprising client, someone who traditionally may not fit into a mortgage profile. Since we’re a startup, it makes sense to help get entrepreneurs in homes while keeping them invested. Getting this message out has definitely gotten realtors excited.

 

How are you overcoming the biggest challenges faced during product development, deployment, and company growth?

We have a really solid action plan. Our strategy is well thought out and was designed using data, research, experience and open sourcing for “off the wall” ideas from the entire business. We all came together to build it, with our sales leader taking an incredibly thoughtful curatorial approach to bring it all together into a roadmap we can actually execute against. We reevaluate this strategy quarterly and innovate so it stays fresh and pivots in real time.

 

One thing I didn't realize before coming on board was how thoughtful Eave is about the interview process."

 

How do you ensure that you don’t miss out on great candidates?

One thing that I didn’t realize before coming on board was how thoughtful Eave is about the interview process. Our team, especially Laura Veith, has done a ton of work to minimize unconscious bias, focus on diversity efforts, optimize for candidate experience and keep diversity top of mind daily. This includes things like referring to candidates using gender-neutral pronouns in our analysis and writing up our analysis of our interviews before we talk with each other to ensure we don’t influence others’ perceptions. It also includes equally weighing technical skills questions with culture fit questions. We focus on things like collaboration, leadership, craftsmanship and communication skills.

 

 

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