Gaining the Technology Leadership Edge, Episode #55

Snap Build’s Secret to Slashing Construction Times by 25%!

Show Notes

About the Guest(s):

Matt Merritt, boasting a rich professional journey, holds degrees in finance and accounting and has an extensive background in software implementations with a focus on large-scale ERPs such as Oracle, SAP, and Microsoft. His early career began in the public audit sector, leading to positions as a public company officer. His versatility is further demonstrated through his roles in various industries, from silicon chip manufacturing to real estate management. Currently, Matt serves as the CEO of Snap Build, a fintech company dedicated to revolutionizing the loan management process for small and medium-sized home builders.

Episode Summary:

In this insightful episode of “Gaining the Technology Leadership Edge,” host Mike welcomes Matt Merritt, CEO of Snap Build, to discuss the transformative journey of leading a fintech company and the innovative solutions they offer. The conversation pivots around Snap Build’s mission to deliver unparalleled speed and efficiency in financing for home builders, disrupting traditional banking models.

Matt delves into his unique background, combining expertise in finance, accounting, and software implementation to spearhead Snap Build. From the onset, Matt emphasizes the importance of ERP knowledge for process improvement and shares anecdotes from his varied experience across industries. The crux of the episode revolves around Snap Build’s technology, which expedites the typically lengthy financing process, granting home builders a substantial competitive edge by reducing build cycles.

Key highlights from the episode showcase the strategic adaptation needed to navigate state-by-state regulatory landscapes, insights on scaling a fintech operation amidst a dynamic financial sector, and the visionary approach required to propel a company forward while ensuring efficiency through advanced technology.

Key Takeaways:

  • Snap Build is innovating the loan management process, offering a platform for builders to receive payments in as quick as 48 hours.
  • The strategic choice to avoid challenging regulatory states has been critical to Snap Build’s selective nationwide expansion.
  • Matt’s leadership philosophy has evolved to empower his team members to address challenges, allowing him to focus on broader company strategies.
  • Matt expresses a desire to see a reformation of the banking system, emphasizing the need for efficiency and free market principles.
  • Balancing the financial components and technology advancements is pivotal for Snap Build’s growth and innovation.

Notable Quotes:

  • “We’re selling speed… our platform says… put that into our system and we’ll pay that within 48 hours.”
  • “You can’t lead anybody anywhere to do anything if you don’t believe in yourself.”
  • “The difference in leaders is to have belief… and be wrong as fast as humanly possible.”
  • “If I sit at my terminal and try to solve every problem… I can never work on the business.”
  • “We’re a multiplier, a force multiplier for [builders]… We do all [the arap and check writing] for you.”

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Episode Details

Revolutionizing Construction Financing: How Fintech Innovations Empower Builders

In an enlightening conversation with Matt Merritt, CEO of Snap build, the advancement and challenges in the intersection of finance, technology, and construction come to light. The journey from conventional banking processes to cutting-edge fintech solutions revolutionizes how small and medium-sized home builders manage financing, building, and competing in today’s market. Taking a deep dive into the discussed themes, insights unfold on the necessity of technological adaption in traditional sectors.

Key Takeaways:

  • The adoption of fintech in construction lending can significantly speed up building processes, thereby offering a competitive edge to builders.
  • Managing the balance between innovation and regulatory environments proves crucial for scaling fintech platforms nationwide.
  • Leadership in a fintech environment requires a strategic pivot from directly solving problems to empowering teams and focusing on broader business objectives.

The Fintech Paradigm in Homebuilding

Homebuilding is an industry ripe for disruption, a fact recognized by leaders like Matt Merritt, who have taken proactive steps to implement fintech solutions to age-old problems. By utilizing platforms like Snap build, builders can now expect a payment process that is dramatically faster than the traditional methods. Where once the process took several weeks, Snap build promises reimbursement within 48 hours, dramatically enhancing the builder’s cash flow and reducing build cycles from twelve months to nine, or even six.

“It is a continuous loop,” Merritt explains, as opposed to the lengthy traditional bank process. With builders able to “hit the market three months faster than… competitors without having to go out of pocket,” Snap build’s offering is not just an improvement; it’s a potential game-changer. These advancements interpret into a preponderance in the market where time equates directly to cost efficiency and profit.

Adapting to Regulatory Landscapes While Scaling

Despite the technological edge that Snap build provides, scaling is fraught with challenges, primarily due to the diverse regulatory environments across states. Merritt addresses this with a keen 80/20 strategy, focusing on markets where Snap build can operate efficiently and legally without becoming mired in the complexities of more regulated states, such as California and Arizona.

“We stay out of some of the states we just choose not to be in business in right now,” Merritt candidly admits, acknowledging the necessity of operating within the bounds of financial and banking regulations. This strategic limitation is not a bottleneck but rather a focused approach to dominating select markets before expanding. Snap build exemplifies a case study on the importance of strategy in a heavily regulated industry, illustrating how legal advisement goes hand-in-hand with technological and product development in the fintech sector.

Leadership Evolution in the Face of Technological Transformation

Merritt reveals his own evolution as a leader since taking the helm at Snap build. “I have two businesses. I have a loan origination business and a software development, software delivery… company,” he asserts, differentiating between the critical areas of focus a CEO must juggle. Under his leadership, a shift occurred from being deeply involved in problem-solving towards a more strategic role, centered around empowering a competent team to keep the business on an innovative trajectory.

For new leaders, Merritt advises, “believe in yourself,” and equally important, “be wrong as fast as humanly possible.” This paradigm of confident, swift decision-making and rapid adaptation creates a vibrant, innovative company culture crucial for success in the fast-paced world of fintech.

Empowering Builders: Future Insights

In reviewing the insights shared, it’s clear that fintech platforms like Snap build will play an increasingly central role in the construction industry’s future. Merritt indicates the drive towards more efficient and faster construction financing as not merely a business improvement but a crucial tactical maneuver within a competitive market. The broad implications are substantial, inferring a domino effect on home availability, market prices, and the overall economy. His leadership style, infused with a strong belief in his vision and quick adaptability, is emblematic of a leader well-suited to the dynamic fintech space.

Furthermore, his vision for a fintech platform that is easily licensable and operable by third parties suggests a future where Snap build’s innovations could become industry standards. Merritt’s conversation also subtly underscores a vital industry trend—business leaders must not only be subject matter experts but visionaries who can perceive the future intersection of technology and traditional business processes, guiding their teams toward untapped market potentials with a strong emphasis on regulatory navigation.

Snap build’s narrative is a powerful testament to how technology, when adeptly leveraged and led, can fundamentally overhaul longstanding practices. CEOs in similar transformative industries might well take a page from Merritt’s playbook, underlining the potential impacts of innovation and astute leadership on business models and industry benchmarks.

Contact Information for Matt Merritt



Timestamp Summary
0:00:00 Matt’s background in finance, accounting, and software implementations.
0:03:13 Snap build’s platform revolutionizes the draw management process for builders, providing speed and efficiency.
0:06:55 Balancing the focus on finance and technology to drive growth and innovation.
0:09:58 Building a technology stack and platform to expand the loan origination business.
0:10:21 Tackling the complexities of being a nationwide company by focusing on specific markets and ensuring compliance.
0:13:14 Insurance companies leaving California due to overregulation.
0:14:03 Introduction to Magic Mind as a focus-enhancing product.
0:14:39 Challenges faced by Snap build in scaling.
0:18:16 Overcoming the challenge of balancing capital stack and technology.
0:19:48 Simplifying payment processes for vendors in the home building industry.
0:22:06 Evolution of leadership style as CEO of Snap build.
0:23:05 Advice for new leaders: believe in yourself and be wrong quickly.
0:24:21 Uninventing social media due to its time-consuming nature.
0:25:37 Matt discusses the challenges of parenting in the digital age
0:26:25 Matt expresses his desire to slow down technological advancements for kids
0:27:32 Mike and Matt discuss the negative impact of social media and headline society
0:28:33 Mike asks Matt who he would collaborate with from history or fiction
0:29:24 Matt chooses Andy Beal and discusses his brilliance and ideas
0:31:06 Matt shares a story about Andy Beal’s aerospace company
0:31:49 Matt provides his contact information for listeners to connect with him
0:31:53 Mike thanks Matt for his time and participation
0:32:28 Mike concludes the interview and thanks the audience for listening