WHAT WE DO
We envision a rental housing sector where transparency and analytics enable communities to facilitate, tenants to demand, and landlords to provide more efficient, sustainable, affordable, and comfortable rental options.
Data on the true cost of rental housing (including utility and transportation costs, affordability, and environmental impact) is scarce. Combined with a split incentive* problem that makes it unlikely anyone will make the changes needed to make rental properties better, it's really, really hard to make progress.
The solution? Working with everyone - tenants, landlords, cities, and universities - to get better info, build better ways of getting that info to people, and build better programs serving the rental sector.
There's no easy solution to the challenges in the rental sector, but we can draw on extensive public data sets, build systems for better data sharing, and use crowdsourcing to fill in the gaps.
Ultimately, unlike other rental search sites, we're completely focused on serving community goals - from saving energy to improving housing quality to increasing affordability - and not on renting properties. Our focus is on the long game, not the next rental cycle.
By arming tenants, landlords, and cities with better information, we can empower tenants to make better decisions and allow landlords to promote the investments they've made in their properties - from bike garages to new HVAC equipment to better insulation - and achieve maximum return on their investments.
And when tenants and landlords change how they behave, cities achieve both sustainability and affordability goals.
*The crux of the split incentive: if landlords pay utility bills, tenants have no incentive to modify their behavior, and can leave the windows open when the AC is on (for example). If tenants pay the utility bills, landlords have no incentive to make properties better (by adding insulation, upgrading appliances, or making the energy-savvy improvements).