Innovation That Matters

Airbnb for universities enables users to rent flats to trusted alumni

Travel & Tourism

UK-based FlatClub is tapping into existing university networks to help alumni set up safe short-term accommodation sharing.

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Airbnb has become a popular model for homeowners looking to make some extra cash from their properties, however many are still concerned about whether they can trust the people staying in their home. UK-based FlatClub is now tapping into existing university networks to help alumni set up safe short-term accommodation sharing.

Much like Airbnb, FlatClub users can upload details about their space for others to browse, setting the rental price and dates the property is available. What sets it apart from its rival is that hosts can also choose the audience for their listings — whether that’s strictly alumni from the university they attended, or those from restricted Clubs created by users, identified using university or company email addresses. This creates a greater trust between hosts and renters, according to University College London, one of the member organizations of the site. Research from the university shows that only ten percent of private property owners are willing to rent out their homes under open models such as Airbnb, and this figure doubles when it comes to dealing with trusted users from their existing networks. Rental durations also become longer, with typical FlatClub users taking rooms for up to a month.

FlatClub currently operates across 30 US and UK organizations and has around 50,000 verified members. The company takes a six to nine percent cut of the rental price. Could this model work in your part of the world?

Spotted by Murray Orange, written by Springwise



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