Prateek Shukla, Co-Founder & CEO, Grabhouse.com shares his views with technuter.com on house hunting.
Ans. The idea of grabhouse clicked when one of the founders was working in Mumbai and faced a lot of problems while house hunting. The existing real estate websites lacked a lot of things and were not able to solve the real issue of house hunting for youngsters i.e. brokerage charged by real estate agent. After a heavy market research for 6 months the company was launched in July 2013.
Q. What is the USP of Grabhouse.com?
Ans. Grabhouse is India’s first 100% broker free website where no one pays brokerage. We are also first to launch compatible roommate search engine. No other real estate website in India takes into consideration the ease of users and values their time and money. We connect people through our smart matching algorithm so that they get only quality leads which get converted quickly.
Q. What is Grabhouse.com doing differently to increase its market share in India?
Ans. Our target customers are in the age range of 18 to 35 and these are people heavily using social media platforms. To reach out to them directly we have partnered with Facebook groups which help people in finding flats and flat mates. We are also engaging youngsters through creative videos and blogs. We have also made more than 100 campus ambassadors in different colleges of India that promote Grabhouse amongst the students and prospective employees in major cities.
Q. As a fast-growing player in online website for finding flat and flatmates in Mumbai and Pune, where would you like to be in the next 5 years or so?
Ans. In next 5 years we will be present in all major and upcoming cities of India. Grabhouse will become the go to platform for all real estate needs of people where we will help them save crores of brokerage. We want our fulfillment channels to be so concrete that people will find flats, roommates or tenants within 48 hours of posting their requirement on the website.
With the increase in the number of smartphone users, the Indian markets ready for a platform which empowers them to house hunt on their own, take informed decisions and save brokerage. We envision that real estate will go mobile and we are the first website facilitating that in India.
Q. Do you plan any significant market expansion in near future?
Ans. We have 3 plans on radar –
Expanding to all metro, tier1 and tier2 cities of India.
Launching PG and hostel accommodation in all cities.
Introducing a specific product for colleges and corporates.
Q. What are the current trends in the online website for finding flat and flatmates provider market?
Ans. The biggest news is that disruption is happening in an established industry like real estate. People are innovating new ways of finding flats and flatmates on their own and bypassing the brokers. This is great sign for us as through this our concept has been validated. Also people want to save time and not waste on seeing a lot of properties with brokers. They expect to know everything about the house online, see photos, neighbourhood info and speak to the owner once. Infact a lot of people coming new to the city want to decide even before coming. All this is a breeding ground for a company like ours.