Moving to London after uni? Searching for accommodation can be stressful and time consuming, as the founders of a new app discovered, when it took them 75 hours to search, find and organise viewings of rental properties. However, the founders of the Urban Collective took their difficult experience renting and turned it into something positive: a new app which promises to make the rental process in London far easier, and more transparent.
We are generation rent. The average age of buying a house has increased to 30, and the number of people who own their own houses has dropped from 75% to 60%. People are renting for longer, by circumstance. But also more people are renting attracted by the flexibility it affords them as they are building their careers and the desire to spend money on experiences such as travelling rather than bricks and mortar.
Launched in June 2017 the company has to services a property finding service and an app. The property finding service is marketing itself to time poor professionals its unique selling point being that the company becomes the primary property search contact and organises all the viewings and searches. This service works by charging the tenant a fee of £600, enabling the service to be completely tenant focussed rather than taking commission from landlords. This allows young professionals to have the stress of searching for a new property completely taken away from them.
The company has also launched a free app called UrbanCo which allows people to search by proximity to life-style features such as gyms or tube stations. The founders say other apps and property services only allowed people to search an area and a price range and this is what makes the app unique. They say that their technique allows them to cut out time wasted on unnecessary properties and take users to a much smaller selection of properties which are more suitable for the renter’s needs and desires.
So far the app is only focused on London, but may expand dependent on its success. Apps like UrbanCo are changing the landscape of renting, and with more of us having to rent for longer, that can only be a good thing.
Image: [Growth Business]