Thursday 9 April 2020
 
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UAE renters hunt for homes online amid Covid-19 lockdown

DUBAI, 15 days ago

As UAE authorities urge the public to adhere to social distancing guidelines and take precautionary measures to combat the spread of Covid-19, renters are making decisions about their next rental home from their digital devices, thus leading the country’s latest innovative proptech startup to reassure landlords that they can continue to list their properties.
 
Urban, a mobile/web application that brings the entire rental journey online, has recorded an 87 per cent leap in daily active users across its platforms over a period of 10 days from March 8, marking a significant shift in behaviour from renters. 
 
In the March 8 to 21 period, Urban said it had experienced a 60 per cent surge in daily active users.  
 
In response to social distancing and quarantine measures aimed at combating the spread of Covid-19, renters are now choosing to search for and secure homes online, with the company noting a 92 per cent rise in the number of offers submitted for listed properties on its app in the week to March 19.
 
In response, Urban is encouraging landlords to list their properties, as despite the cautious environment cause by coronavirus, renters are still on the hunt for homes and embracing new ways in which to view and rent them.
 
With users able to view virtual tours of every listing, visit homes using their phone to open digital locks, submit paperwork and pay rent online, Urban is providing renters with a compelling and safe way to find their new home during this challenging time, said a senior official.
 
"As authorities in the UAE admirably continue to combat Covid-19, landlords and renters are being forced to adapt to this new reality. People are looking to rent, but rightly concerned that viewing properties will mean contravening social distancing guidelines," remarked Rashid Al Ghurair, its CEO and founder.
 
"Landlords are worried that the virus will dampen rental demand. This is where Urban comes in," he stated. 
 
"Ours is a platform that connects landlords to tenants online, ensuring that renters can views quality homes through virtual tours and independently conduct viewings, while landlords can find quality tenants hunting for new homes," he added.
 
General Manager Tala Nsouli said: "Urban is built on tenant-centric values and empowers renters and landlords throughout the rental journey. As renters try to navigate the current Covid-19 environment, Urban helps them find their new home entirely online from the comfort of their own homes."
 
"Landlords need to adapt to this digital-first environment and consider innovative ways to market their properties," he added.-TradeArabia News Service



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