Groffr.com launches 'Rent a Flat', a free flat rental service to cut out middlemen and build brand recall

11 May, 2012

Real estate group buying portal Groffr.com has launched a new service called Rent a Flat. The service is free of cost and with it users can look for flats/rooms on rent by posting their requirements on the site. Also, if someone has a room or a flat to rent out, they can also post what they have to offer. But to post a requirement, users have to login via their Facebook accounts.

"Finding a flat on rent or looking for flatmates/roommates becomes a pain point in a new city, especially with that stringent budget. This service will solve that problem and it is primarily targeted at college pass-outs who get their placements in cities other than the ones they are living in. Also, the fact that Facebook login is mandatory for posting a requirement means that only genuine people will post them," Sandeep Reddy, co-founder of Groffr.com, told Techcircle.in.

The key here is that since people are posting their requirements and offerings directly, they can connect with the landlords and renters without actually going through the middlemen (brokers, real estate agents). This means that both parties will save money on the brokerage (sorry brokers).

But what about money and what's in it for Groffr? We bounced this question to Reddy. "We don't plan to monetize from the service, it is and will always remain free of cost. What we are trying to do is build a brand recall so that when these people (the college pass-outs) eventually buy their own properties, they think of Groffr," added Reddy.

The website is pretty simple to navigate and users can also filter their requirements according to a city and locality. The cities in the network as of now include Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Delhi, Kochi, Nagpur, Hyderabad, Chennai, Jaipur, Goa, Ahmedabad, Ghaziabad, Gurgaon, Noida, Faridabad, Delhi and Bhubaneshwar.

Once a requirement is posted, users can contact the concerned person directly via Facebook or any other medium (phone, mail depending on the contact details shared by them).

Mumbai-based RCSPL, which owns group buying portal for real estate GrOffr.com (which stands for 'Group Offer'), was set up in July 2010 by Vikhyat Srivastava and Reddy, IIM-Kozhikode alumni and former analysts with Kotak Mahindra Group. The site primarily offers deals in real estate, as well as high-priced products like automobiles diamond jewellery, LED TVs and services such as helicopter rides, among others.

The company had earlier raised $1 million from Indian Angel Network (IAN).