Problems in the property industry
With the housing market starting to recover after the impact of the pandemic, there has been a drastic rise in demand for properties in the London. Yet, people are wanting more than to just go to Rightmove, select a few basic filters and location to consequently find an array of houses that don’t fit their perfect criteria. Consumers are wanting personalisation now more than ever. They desire to specify exactly what they want and be presented with their perfect home.
Whilst more companies adapt the personalisation trend, there is still a gap in the market for a personalised property platform for new builds especially in the luxury property industry.
Did you know that the best homes rarely make it to the open market on property portals? Many sellers want to sell privately and with a secret marketplace in London for high-value homes, it can be hard to find these properties. Introducing HomeFinder, an online serviced marketplace which makes it easy to find new homes and developments for sale in London who has access to these ‘off-market’ homes.
HomeFinder aims to stop the unnecessary scrolling, each client is assigned their own private HomeFinder. Buyers receive personalised suggestions from experts who have access to an extensive database of properties in London. HomeFinder arrange everything for buyers, so they only need one point of contact. Streamlining the whole house hunting process.
By not treating buyers as leads, HomeFinder focuses on offering a premium, free service to those who are serious about finding their dream home. Helping developers and agents sell to the perfect buyer. HomeFinder go the extra mile by using their knowledge and expertise to introduce buyers to areas they haven’t previously considered.
James Nightingall, Founder & CEO of HomeFinder previously worked as a buyer’s agent for celebrities, UHNWs including Chelsea football players, actors and a few billionaires to name a few. From his 10 years’ experience in the industry, he has consistently recognised that luxury consumers have very specific needs. He also understands that buying a home is one of the most emotional experiences and takes this into account at HomeFinder. His ambition with HomeFinder is to provide the same service he provided his previous clients, but at scale so he can help as many people as possible!
HomeFinder is currently building a portal like no other, by collecting data from homes and using deep learning technology to find homes for buyers. They’re continuing to add unique filers including features like south-facing apartments, to help people find their dream home. Since the soft launch of HomeFinder in October 2021, they’ve already had over 350 buyers sign up to get help with discovering their dream home. As the demand is so high for this service, they’re already seeking to hire new HomeFinders, as well as seeking pre-seed investment to accelerate growth and expand the locations they offer the service.
Geovation Accelerator Programme
To help James start his business he joined the PropTech track of the Geovation Accelerator Programme backed by Ordnance Survey and HM Land Registry. Being on the Programme allowed James to kickstart his business with equity-free grant funding and access to industry experts, which was invaluable at such an early-stage.
James said ‘The benefits of the Geovation are endless – the contacts, reputation, equity-free funding and workshops are invaluable. My favourite part is ultimately the people – everyone wants you create an amazing company and goes the extra mile to help make this happen.’
Through the Programme founders get exclusive workshops which focus on growing their understanding of different aspects of building a successful start-up. James has learnt many skills through these, especially through customer journey workshops. Being on the PropTech track of the Programme HomeFinder were able to have direct access to experts from HMLR who provided close support. James said ‘HMLR has been invaluable with their support to provide this to our buyers. When people are making an important decision like buying a home, buyers rightly want to know as much as possible about historical prices and land ownership.’
Find out more about our Accelerator Programme here.