Currently, the rental market is broken – there is no transparency, and overpriced agents profit from keeping it this way. nestpick is fixing the market by providing full transparency – it’s an online rental platform that creates a new standard of how people rent homes, challenging the industry’s long-held belief that in-person viewings are required. These days, when people tend to be more and more flexible, change jobs and location frequently and need to find accommodation in faraway places where they don´t speak the local language, it is long overdue for the rental market to accommodate these needs. The hospitality industry has already seen their “digital revolution” – but the rental market is lagging behind. Very little has been done so far to increase transparency and to offer true alternatives to the traditional, over-priced agency model. nestpick will change this – they believe that the time of agents in the market is over. With excellent visualization of the nests listed on nestpick, in-person viewings will become obsolete. Allowing users to directly book their next home home online opens the market to all those who are currently locked out because they are not on the ground, because they don’t speak local language, because they don’t know where to search. And nestpick provides security – in case anything goes wrong, their nest-assured policy gives users the peace of mind that they will not be left homeless, no matter what.
Fabian Dudek founded nestpick in June 2014. For the first half year, the business was focused exclusively on Rotterdam. As Fabian saw a huge demand in the market for a service like nestpick, the idea of taking this business global was born. In December 2014, Dr. Patricia Moubarak joined as co-founder to lead the business with Fabian, and since then she has been using the experience that she gathered as global MD of foodpanda to drive nestpick´s internationalisation. Every member of the nestpick team has had their own, painful experience with trying to find a place to live abroad, or remotely trying to search for a new nest when not yet on the ground. Patricia’s worst experience personally was trying to find a new home in Berlin when she started a new job – viewings were set at impossible times for her to make, so it took close to a week of full time, on-the-ground searching to find something adequate. In the end, she paid an exorbitant sum to an agent for this – which led her to wonder what other options the market could offer as an alternative to this scenario.
The biggest challenge was to balance the speed of growth with focus – especially because when you see strong demand in markets, you would want to expand quickly, easily getting carried away by all of the possibilities. Still, there is a limit to the speed you can grow with – one example being that the share of management time you can put will limit the amount of people you can recruit. And finding the right people is not an easy task . . . It’s all about building a great team – and that requires some time and effort.
Nestpick is the first platform to offer mid-to-long-term online rental where users can make the full transaction online. Other players in the market only share part of their model – traditional classifieds list offers, but neither verify them nor allow you to book directly – so you still may have to endure the pain of scammers and would still need to go for in-person-viewings. So you could say that there is no direct competition. Nestpick is already present in eight European markets and Australia, and will not stop there – after all, it’s a global business. By the end of 2015, they will expand their presence to 15-20 countries, while further increasing their footprint within those countries where they’re already present. It’s just a matter of time until nestpick becomes the new standard how to rent your next home for literally everyone. Their first target group is the tech savvy, geographically flexible younger generation, quite naturally working across different countries and time zones. For their services, nestpick requests a fee of 25% of the first month’s rent from their tenants; the service is completely free for landlords.