Instahome introduces The New Way to Rent a Home in Malaysia with the aim to transform the region’s home rental experience.
Instahome was founded in September 2020 by prolific internet entrepreneurs in Southeast Asia (SEA), Patrick Grove and Eric Tan. Grove is also the Group CEO and Co-Founder of Catcha Group, a leading SEA internet group, behind companies like iProperty, iflix, iCar Asia and Rev Asia. Prior to launching Instahome, Tan was Grove’s Chief of Staff in Catcha, where he led the group’s investment team. He was also formerly a founder of another Catcha-backed live-streaming app, VIP Live in Indonesia and previously, the Head of SEA at a London-based mobile app analytics startup, Reflection.io.
Months of research and survey by the team has proven that renting a home could turn out a very frustrating process for renters across the country. Most renting experiences are plagued by fake and/or inaccurate listings, misleading photos and a cumbersome and overly-manual process.
With these in mind, the idea of Instahome was born, looking to leverage on the use of design and technology to help renters dramatically improve home rental experience for tenants, agents and landlords.
In a 200-renters survey in Klang Valley conducted by the Instahome team before the launch, a staggering 60% of the renters complained that the quality of listing on existing property websites as their biggest frustration when looking for a rental home.
“As a team of frustrated renters, we asked ourselves ‘What is the dream renting experience?’ and we realised that the world of renting has not caught up with the times,” says Eric Tan, CEO and Co-Founder of Instahome. “We set out to create a better and new way to rent a home. On Instahome, we personally visit and check all of our homes before listing them on our platform – no more filtering through hundreds of fake, inaccurate and poor-quality listings.”
Additional key features of Instahome include:
-3D virtual tours, HD photos and videos of every listed homes
-Scheduling home visits on the platform
-Renting online, without the hassle of paperwork
-Discovering and arranging for maintenance services
-Paying rent on time for rewards redemption and the building of a credit profile
Another major problem on existing property websites is the duplication of listings. This is because landlords normally work with a few agents to look for tenants for the same rental properties and these agents would subsequently list the same units on major classifieds. This results in a horrible search experience for a would-be renter, as one has to spend hours, unknowingly enquiring the same units.
“In the past, some of our team members have visited the same property twice (some even thrice!) with different real estate agents when they were looking for a place to rent as the exact property address is not disclosed at the point of viewing. It’s a huge waste of time and effort for all parties involved. Therefore, we make sure all the listings on Instahome are unique. Once a property is listed by our partner agent, we will reject all future requests by other agents to list the same unit. For agents, it only takes 1 minute to list their property with Instahome – all we ask for is the property address, rent, and deposit requirement, we then take care of the rest. We want to make sure that agents find tenants in the most efficient manner. We are very fortunate to have signed up more than 100 agents across Klang Valley to partner with us officially at launch, and we look forward to many more agents who have already expressed interest to work together once our platform is live. We want to make renting a home as easy as buying a T-shirt online,” Tan added.
Patrick Grove, Co-Founder and Investor of Instahome, is no stranger to the online property marketplace scene. He was the Chairman and Co-Founder of iProperty Group, SEA’s largest property website. iProperty Group was acquired by Rupert Murdoch’s REA Group for US$532m in 2015, as one of the region’s largest tech exit. “I am extremely excited to launch Instahome with an extremely passionate and talented founding team. Except for online property classifieds, the real estate industry has largely remained the same in the last 20 years. With our operating experience in iProperty, extensive industry network and personal frustration on the problem, we are very convinced that Instahome is the future of home rental,” Grove commented.