Yurrp, a platform designed to solve the rent crisis. One Landlord at a time.
It’s time to know who you’re renting from, up front, with Yurrp.
Rent better, with Yurrp.
The Rental market in the US is fragmented, lacks oversight, is inauthentic and faces an adverse selection problem. There are 3 direct problems we want to solve, collectively.
(1) Renters make choices on price alone, not having access to information about the type (service standard/performance) of the Landlord/Property Management Company they are entering into a relationship with.
(2) Landlords, often exhausted with the rental application process, hire Property Managers to facilitate. On average, Property managers are paid 10-15% of the the total monthly rent to handle the rent cycle, payments, issues and terminations. With the average length of time in a rental at 3 years, the value being added by the outsourced property manager is lost over time, driving up rents for Renters while keeping revenues to landlords minimal.
(3) The rental process, by and large, is still managed on paper, by hand-written applications that require diligence to fill out (and likely a scanner to return – only 33% of American’s own a scanner), physical checks for deposit/rent payments (42% of payments), and lastly paper copies of final walk through/deposit refund statements.
As a platform, Yurrp will target both Renters as well as Landlords (and Savvy Property Managers) to the platform to solve the challenges listed above.
On the Renter side, we will give Renters a place to provide feedback on the property as well as the Landlord/Property Manager that will drive transparency to the market. Unlike Yelp, or other reputation management tools, we plan on assessing feedback from a data perspective and providing the market a Yurrp rating about each property & manager’s performance. We will also provide Renters with a direct channel to a legal resource in cases where intervention is needed from a deposit perspective. As the amount of Renters grows, the opportunity for landlords to market/advertise rental listings will increase (Landlords with higher ratings may see priority listing exposure on the platform). Eventually, renters will be able to browse listings and “Quick Apply” with their profile.
On the Landlord side, we will provide unlimited free digital rental applications that they can use in online advertising (initially on other platforms) to collect rental application information in an easier way. From there, we will have a Suite of paid tools for Landlords to purchase that will include credit checks, leasing process management, property lockers, messaging center, maintenance requests & vendor management, digital walk throughs, lease terminations/move-outs, deposit refunds/final statements, as well as digital rent payments. (The digital rental application will also drive Renters to the platform, which we can retarget for Rent Ratings).
As users on both sides grow, we can expect to see network effects that are Direct (value being driven to Renters as more Rent Ratings are received, helping them select properties more aligned with their values) and Indirect (more Landlords being attracted to the platform to advertise listings as Renter usage increases). We can also expect to see behavior changes from the Landlord side, as we solve the adverse effects in the market. Landlords will be incentivized to do better and be better to tenants, ultimately bringing more value to the market. If we’re lucky enough, we may also be able to help bring down rents as we make the process easier for Landlords (as well as possibly eliminate “bad” Property Managers by providing that feedback to Landlords who have hired one).
Target Market // Opportunity
In the US, there are over 108,000,000 Renters with an average rental length of 3 years (there are far more individual renters than properties because of shared-living/roommates). There are almost 11,000,000 Landlords in the US that own 2.2 rental properties on average (large multifamily apartments create a long tail here). In any given year, 1/3 of all rental properties are placed on the market for a new tenant, resulting in 8,000,000 new rental transactions per year. Each rental unit accepts 2.5 applications per property, resulting in 20,000,000 opportunities per year to add value to the rental application process.
Monetization opportunities include SaaS fees for Savvy Landlords who want to eliminate the middle man (Property Manager) or just simplify their own process. One Time fees for credit checks on applications that are set to proceed (we can drive the cost down by partnering with Credit Karma or another online Credit tool) as well as processing charges for digital (credit card) rent payments are also an option. Revenue share opportunities will also be presented as we grow partnerships (integrations) with Rent Insurance providers, Moving Companies, Digital Credit Monitoring/Score providers, and Legal Providers helping tenants recover lost (unfounded) deposits. And lastly, let’s not forget about all that wonderful data.
As CEO I will be the driver to make this vision come to light. I have been in the Real Estate technology space for over 10 years, working as the Director of Sales for Homes.com through 2016, until ultimately joining Agentology (now Verse.io) as the Senior Vice President of Sales in 2017. Real Estate is my favorite space and I have first hand experience of the challenges in this market both from a technology perspective and from a personal perspective (as a Renter). On my team already is Randy Byrd, CTO/Product Manager whose work ranges from Facebook applications to the new BASS Pro fishing app (go check it out – pretty neat way to make sure you can always catch something!) Randy has a team of Engineers that he has successfully leveraged to build some of his other projects and we plan on leveraging them here as well. They are focusing on our MVP for now, which includes the digital rental application and the Rent Ratings so that we can test G2M strategy and begin building the user base. We have Erin Applin, our COO & co-founder, who is an operations professional tasked with maintaining the success of our Landlord clients as well as the maintaining our internal teams. Kelsey McKinny our VP of Marketing will be responsible for Renter & Landlord User Acquisition via Social Media Marketing and ultimately paid reviews (Starbucks Gift Cards) until we are able to achieve critical mass in each market. As a revenue and business development leader myself, I will be handling Landlord acquisition from a direct sales standpoint as well, until the time we need to find other leaders to join the business to drive on our initiatives.
There are a few other sites collecting ratings from Renters, (www.reviewmylandlord.com, www.ratemylandlord.com and www.tenantlandlordratings.com) but, without focusing on driving value and building a better platform/ecosystem, in all cases the reviews are completely negative and fail to solve the challenges in the market. (This is why the rating itself should come from data about the property & management performance and not just a star rating assigned from the Renter, although we are considering allowing for both). They also don’t market heavily, so as a renter not knowing this information is even available prohibits usage.
From a Real Estate perspective, the Zillow Group is currently providing rent estimates to renters on the platform. The do offer a handful of tools on the back end for Listing Agents to collect renter information, however, they are doubling down on the adverse selection problem by not providing any additional information about the Landlord/Property Manager to the renter (you can only see the Listing Agent’s identity). Zillow Group is primary focused on the For-Sale Market in Real Estate and has currently been hyper focused on their new initiative of buying/selling properties itself for profit. Applfolio is also providing tools to Property Managers, but their focus is on larger multifamily apartment communities and not on driving value to the market in general.
Yurrp is a play on words; Yurt (a temporary residence or dwelling) + Yelp (Business reputation site) = YURRP!
Yurrp is a total market solution providing value to both Landlords and Tenants by streamlining process, maintaining transparency and bringing the best landlords & tenants together!
Participant comments on Yurrp, a platform designed to solve the rent crisis. One Landlord at a time.
Love this idea and I would hope you are able to get this out with a growing user base. I hear the passion in your briefing which generates excitement. You team seems to be highly capable. A couple of small comments: Price does not drive renters alone. Suggest location (how close to school, work, social scene, bus), reputation (your ap would help here), and demographics of other renters (Young professionals, students, young families, empty-nesters, are key considerations).
Thanks for the feedback Judith! As listings on the portal grow we do intend to add other factors to help with search (like neighborhoods, schools, etc). In Real Estate we have to be careful with demographic information because of laws, but we are thinking of getting that information from the renters themselves, which would be helpful and hopefully be compliant.