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April 18, 2023
June 10, 2024

Opendoor Layoffs: What Happened & Why?

In April 2020, Opendoor, a San Francisco-based company specializing in instant home buying and selling, laid off 600 employees, amounting to 35% of its staff. This massive layoff was a result of the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the residential real estate market, with declines in buying, selling, and moving activities. In this article, we'll discuss what happened, why it happened, and the potential future impact on the company and the industry.

Why did Opendoor have layoffs?

Opendoor's decision to lay off 600 employees, or 35% of its staff, was primarily driven by the economic pressures and shifts in industry demands caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. With people staying indoors and non-essential services shut down, the residential real estate market experienced a decline in the number of homes for sale and a decrease in buying, selling, and moving activities. Opendoor's CEO, Eric Wu, stated that the layoffs were necessary to ensure the company can continue to deliver on its mission and build the experience consumers deserve.

As part of the severance package, laid-off employees received eight weeks of full pay and 16 weeks of reimbursement for health insurance coverage. Wu also donated his 2020 salary to a relief fund for Opendoor employees facing financial or health challenges due to the virus. While the page does not provide specific insights from industry analysts or statements from company executives, it does mention that Opendoor specializes in "instant buying" and has raised significant funding, including from SoftBank's Vision Fund.

Financial Impact and Future Directions

The financial implications, expected costs and savings, and the short and long-term financial health of Opendoor following the layoffs are not discussed in the available sources. Similarly, there is no information on any strategic shifts, focus on certain products or markets, or how the company plans to position itself for future success post-layoffs.

Impact on Industry

Opendoor's recent significant layoffs underscore the ongoing challenges in the real estate sector, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. As one of the largest layoffs among pre-IPO startups since the onset of the pandemic, this move signals potential difficulties ahead for the industry. This situation illustrates the need for strategic adjustments to navigate these turbulent times effectively.


Opendoor's massive layoff of 600 employees, or 35% of its staff, was a result of the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the real estate market. The company offered severance packages and CEO Eric Wu donated his salary to a relief fund. The layoffs signal potential challenges for the industry, with long-term effects yet to be seen. Opendoor's future standing in the market and any strategic shifts they might take post-layoffs remain uncertain.