How rental listings are being used as a ‘gateway drug’ to attract first-time buyers

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Doorsteps, an online tool owned by operator Move that guides consumers through the homebuying process, has added rental search capability to its listing search app Doorsteps Swipe, along with improved functionality for gauging user preferences and recommending listings based on them. Screen shot showing a Doorsteps Swipe user rejecting a listing. Doorsteps CEO Michele Serro said that users have requested rental search capability more than any other feature, and sees it as a way to cater to the “person thinking about buying 18 to 20 months out” who may move to another rental before trying to buy. If Doorsteps Swipe is like Tinder for real estate, then rentals are the eye candy that can attract renters. Doorsteps walks first-time buyers step by step through the homebuying process, so adding functionality that attracts future homeowners jibes with its overall mission. Serro calls the app a “gateway drug into Doorsteps.” The app encourages users to “sync ...