Houston HomeMe hoping to reinvent apartment rentalsHouston HomeMe hoping to reinvent apartment rentalshttps://www.recenter.tamu.edu/news/newstalk-texas/?Item=122832016-03-01T06:00:00Z2016-03-01T20:00:00Z

​​HOUSTON - Houston apartment managers face a pervasive problem.

Prospective renters would visit an apartment, tour the property and fill out an application—only to fail the credit check or minimum income threshold.

Enter HomeMe, a new tech startup that hopes to reinvent Houston’s apartment rental market by preapproving renters and matching them with suitable apartments across the Bayou City.

The Los Angeles-based tech company launched its new app February 24 in Houston, the nation's largest apartment rental market.

HomeMe reverses the apartment rental process by screening its users first—verifying income, background and credit scores—before showcasing apartments.

Prospective renters can input their Social Security number and upload photos of their driver’s license and recent paystubs into the secure app. They do this just once, instead of giving their personal information to each apartment they visit.

Once the prospective renter is preapproved through the app, it’s good for 60 days.

Participating apartments waive their application fees because it’s all done through the app, said Mark Douglas, who co-founded HomeMe along with Lindsey Holland.

“For renters, every apartment you see in the app, you’re preapproved to rent,” Douglas said. “This streamlines the rental process.”

Renters also can use the app to book appointment to tour apartments and even put their deposit down on their favorite apartment via a credit card or Apple Pay. 

At launch, the HomeMe app has more than 40 percent of all multifamily properties in Houston signed up, including some of the biggest apartment managers such as Alliance Residential, Camden Property Trust and Greystar. 

HomeMe​, which raised $2 million in venture capital in 2015, ultimately hopes to expand to Austin, Dallas and San Antonio and then nationwide.

Houston Business Journal
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land

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