Housing.co.in, India’s first map based real estate search portal has today expanded its operations altogether in Pune, Gurgaon and Hyderabad after gaining a great response in Mumbai.
Launched in 2012, by a group of around 12 IIT Mumbai Alumni, Housing.co.in works on the idea of helping people to book or rent flats without brokers. The site maps out the major detail of the property such as pictures, rental, security deposit, etc.
The site provides a unique ‘nearby search bar’, which instead of providing a search based on locality, provides a hyper locate search. For example, if someone wants a flat near some specific cafe coffee day in Bandra, he can directly search it on the website. This concept of nearby search bar is not available on any other website all over the world claims Advitiya Sharma, Co- founder Housing.co.in
Talking about the revenue model, the company collects its revenue by charging subscription fee, biannually or annually from partner brokers which allows them to upload unlimited listings on the website. For now, the company is providing free listings for landlords.
The company’s business model is different from other online property portals such as Magicbricks.com, 99acres.com, as they are selling their listings in quantum of listings as typically 500 and more. A typical broker in Mumbai can sell around 30-40 flats in whole year which makes them add redundant listings on these websites.
According to Advitiya, currently the biggest problem real estate sector facing is lack of authentic information. Housing.co.in provides a dedicated in house team for data collection services ensuring authenticity and accuracy of data.
Recently, in Q1 FY13, the company has raised two rounds of funding back to back. The first round of angel funding was led predominantly by alumni of IIT Bombay and IIM Ahmedabad. The total were around 8 investors, led by Zishaan Hayath of Future Bazaar. The company raised the subsequent seed round only a month after from Haresh Chawla, former Network18 CEO & currently managing partner at IVFA. Haresh is also an advisor to the Housing.co.in. The amounts involved in both deals were remain undisclosed.
When asked about the next funding, Advitiya said that they are having inbound requests from the Indian as well as foreign vc’s but they are waiting for right partner who can match their core idea and beliefs.
Housing.co.in also has launched sleek user experience mobile apps for Android & iOS recently which can further easy the problem for users related to property search.