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1. THE BEGINNING
This innovation came to life when…
I was asked by a client in my pre-existing mortgage brokering business to help find the best agent to sell her unit. Finding or comparing agents’ sales data online was impossible, so we saw an opportunity to solve this (common) problem. However, we soon got a touch of the ‘Rudds’ and envisioned a more grandiloquent scheme to connect all players in the residential property market via a niche social network. The delusion remains, but has been leavened by a compelling repositioning: Housenet is the online home, for your home. You can buy, sell, invest, borrow, connect and renovate online.
2. WHAT & HOW
The purpose of this innovation is to…
Help people to ‘do property better’ by providing the first ever domestic platform for social connections based on where people live or want to invest in real estate. That’s a radical step.
It does this by…
Providing the tools, features and people (other Housenet members) to buy, sell, invest, renovate, borrow with more success. We’ve established partnerships with Property Observer, eChoice home loans, Reach Local, Ripehouse, and have built a groundbreaking online renovation tool (to be launched). Facebook connects you with friends, LinkedIn with career peeps, Housenet connects you with neighbours and local property people.
3. PURPOSE & BENEFITS
This innovation improves on what came before because…
It fills the gaping hole that exists between listings portals, dinosaur property forums and social media. It is impossible to have social experience on RealEstate.com.au / Domain, Facebook doesn’t cater for local property and old forum sites are ancient.
The benefits to the customer/end-user include…
You can create free property listings that are social, project manage your renovation online, borrow, access live market data to find bargains for sale, connect with other local residents, and learn from industry pros in local area and beyond.
4. COMPETITIVE LANDSCAPE
In the past, this problem was solved by…
Using various sites and services in an ad hoc way that took way too much time and hassle. Housenet is ‘the online home, for your home’, and will essentially be the domicile site for people to do all their housing and property-related stuff from. Makes sense, no?
Its predecessors/competitors include…
Somersoft.com for property forums, Facebook for social, realestate.com.au for listings, and RP Data for data. We combine all of this and more in one seamless online experience, and allow people to search and connect based on postcode/suburb location. Groovy.
5. TARGET MARKET
This innovation is made for…
Homeowners, investors and first-home buyers, with a slight skew to female. Data now shows women significantly outnumber men in property ownership, and especially in the younger, single demographic. In addition, they are heavier users of social media and much more likely to seek help than men, so a resource like this appeals. We’ve already built a substantial membership of mostly industry members whilst in beta, and this will service demand from new members as we now pivot towards consumers.
6. DISTRIBUTION STRATEGY
It is available for sale through…
It is live now, but some key elements discussed here will not be available until late May (e.g. renovation tool, invest button etc.).
Our marketing strategy is to…
Integrated SEO with a ‘product-market fit’ and a frictionless sign up and invite process should drive further organic user acquisition. We’ve already attracted plenty of press and project more with the forthcoming pivot and new features. We’ve also produced a cartoon series called ‘Do Birds Renovate?’ that’s a cross between Angry Birds and The Block, and is way funny.
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This SMART 100 profile and the information it contains is a duplication of content submitted by the applicant during the entry process. As a function of entry, applicants were required to declare that all details are factually correct, do not infringe on another’s intellectual property and are not unlawful, threatening, defamatory, invasive of privacy, obscene, or otherwise objectionable. Some profiles have been edited for reasons of space and clarity.