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Place tenants and find future buyers with RentBase, a CRM for rental agents

The company's internal research shows aspiring tenants who complete their onboarding survey end up choosing properties that cost 15% more per month
By rental agents, for rental agents

RentBase’s internal research shows aspiring tenants who complete their onboarding survey end up choosing properties that cost 15 percent more per month.

Have suggestions for products that you’d like to see reviewed by our real estate technology expert? Email Craig Rowe.

RentBase is a CRM for agents who represent renters.

Platforms: Browser
Ideal For: Agents who work with renters

Top selling points:

  • Rental-lead specific UX
  • Integrates landlord contacts and listings
  • Matches leads to listings
  • Lead qualification survey

Top concern:

A number of existing CRMs on the market do what this software does, but it’s low-cost of use and specificity offer some advantages to users.

What you should know

RentBase helps real estate agents who represent prospective tenants track and place leads, coordinate with landlords and better manage their business. Rental prospects require unique communication and outreach tactics, and this software is designed to assist in that endeavor and can help agents build a database of future buyers.

Contact with renters can lead to direct future sales commissions and referrals. It offers agents a chance to build a database, educate consumers on homebuying and do so without the pressure or time-suck that often defines buyer representation.

A software solution like RentBase can help leverage the rental market as a secondary line of income while minimizing the effort to do so.

The system is structured like a standard CRM, but lacks the big, enterprise feel of the BoomTowns and kvCOREs of the world. It’s pared down to reflect its purpose.

RentBase sends to leads a brief wants-and-needs survey to collect specifics on each prospect. Naturally, that data populates the record and activates the listing-match algorithm. The company’s internal research shows aspiring tenants who complete the survey end up choosing properties that cost 15 percent more per month than the property in which they were initially interested as result of their matching functionality. (Just like most buyers.)

The software allows for ongoing contact with landlords and each property under their name.

The Listings UX is nicely designed in a card format, each displaying an image, availability, rent amount and typical details. One click is all that’s needed to call the landlord when a match may be eminent.

Naturally, it offers in-depth looks into each renter record, their survey-acquired data, and even if they’ll be accompanied by a roommate or two. I like that minimal but critical touch regarding number of occupants, as there’s usually one in the rental group leading the effort, and it helps agents know who to keep tabs on. It also gives landlord contacts critical tenant information.

The Follow-Ups feature is self-evident: It tracks communications between the user and all parties, sorted by date and includes tasks and activities related to landlords, too.

I’m surprised that there isn’t some documentation workflows in place, and tools to handle credit and background checks, and ways to connect rental clients with a landlord’s application and leasing systems. In due time, perhaps.

RentBase offers a freemium model that in summary, qualifies the lead (again, tenant backgrounds and financial data would add value here), matches leads to listings and identifies new opportunities by alerting users to likely renewals and buying potential.

This is yet another product in a quickly growing line of proptech for the rental market. NestEgg, Lessen and Landing are a few exciting  examples of what it’s in store for this vital part of the real estate market.

Because of its cost structure, I understand how this software would appeal to some agents — new agents, especially. Working renters is a highly effective way to earn a little income, learn a market and gain critical wisdom for dealing with consumers. I’ve often wondered why more brokerages don’t encourage this.

Maybe RentBase can offer them more reason to.

Have a technology product you would like to discuss? Email Craig Rowe

Craig C. Rowe started in commercial real estate at the dawn of the dot-com boom, helping an array of commercial real estate companies fortify their online presence and analyze internal software decisions. He now helps agents with technology decisions and marketing through reviewing software and tech for Inman.

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