Cozy Brings Apartment Renting into the 21st Century

  • October 5, 2012

by Shilpi Paul

Cozy Brings Apartment Renting into the 21st Century: Figure 1
Courtesy of Cozy.

Forget filling out paper applications and writing checks. A new website aims to bring the communication process between landlords and renters into the 21st century.

Cozy was developed by two entrepreneurs who grew frustrated with the paperwork and iffy security involved in rentals transactions.

From Cozy:

We kept asking each other why the rental experience was so bad, so paper-based, and so unsecure. Over two years, the conversation kept going, and questions kept coming: Why do renters have to give their most sensitive information like SSN and bank info to strangers on a piece of paper? Why do the vast majority of renters still pay with a paper check? Why do landlords deal with late/bounced/paper checks? Why do applications take 30 minutes to complete when landlords are really looking for 3 key pieces of information? It should take 5!

Cozy addresses many of these questions by streamlining the apartment application process and putting it online. Once the landlords select their tenants, Cozy also makes it easy to pay rent through a secure system on the site. And, renters can keep their profiles alive for future apartments, building up a rental history.

Cozy Brings Apartment Renting into the 21st Century: Figure 2
How landlords can sift through prospective renters.

For landlords, Cozy’s platform offers a user-friendly way to compare vital data about prospective renters, keep track of all properties, and collect rent. For renters, it’s a place to show off your rental history, salary and other competitive details, to pay rent easily and to coordinate with roommates. The streamlined process also means that landlords won’t be accidentally running multiple credit checks (an incident that prompted one of the founder to move ahead with Cozy).

Much like the Common App changed the college admissions process, the service could make a permanent change in the way most landlords and renters interact with each other. It launched quietly earlier this year and has raised $1.5 million in seed funding so far.

Cozy is currently in beta. The site is offering invitations to landlords, who can then invite their renters. Soon, according to Atlantic Cities, the site will have some new offerings for renters.

Renters and landlords, what do you think? Would you use this site?

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/cozy_brings_apartment_renting_into_the_21st_century/6124

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