A California investing startup just launched a new feature to show how much home you can afford

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  • Investment startup Wealthfront is adding a new feature to its Path platform to help users plan to buy a home.
  • The company is betting big on Path to increase its assets under management.

Wealthfront, the California investing startup with $US10.5 billion under management, announced Monday a new feature to help users with the home-buying process.

The home planning feature is the latest addition to Wealthfront’s Path platform, which gives users a sense of their broader financial picture to help plan for major financial events.

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“With the introduction of Path’s home planning service, our clients can now easily plan for all of their major life milestones – from saving for their children’s future to one day retiring – with just a few taps on their phone,” said Andy Rachleff cofounder and CEO of Wealthfront.

Drawing on data from real estate database Redfin, the feature allows people to explore housing costs in neighbourhoods across the US. It also shows them whether or not a certain home purchase is affordable and how it might impact other financial goals.

At the beginning of January, Wealthfront said it would use newly raised capital to further expand its Path Platform, which the company says has been a darling among younger users. The company raised $US75 million in a fundraising round led by Tiger Global Management.

“We just closed a record breaking 2017, having grown our assets 100% to about $US10.5 billion under management,” Rachleff told Business Insider through a spokeswoman. “We attribute this accelerated growth rate to the launch of Path.”

Across the investment startup space, companies are rolling out new features and products to stand out in a marketplace that’s crowded.

“There has been a rapid increase in competition in the digital advice industry and it shows no signs of stopping,” an industry report by BackendBenchmarking noted. “Independent robo advisors need to quickly acquire market share and innovate or they risk being overshadowed by larger, more established financial institutions.”

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