With over $120 Bn in revenues, the real estate market is Huge. The total contribution of the real estate sector to the national GDP has been estimated to be about 6.3 per cent in 2013 and is the second largest generator of economic activity after agriculture, as per reports. High revenues is proportional to number of players and thus the competitors.
When Ivy League graduate, Priya Maheshwari wanted to buy a house in Bangalore after re-locating from the Bay Area, California, all she could find were listing websites or property marketing websites. From this personal pain point, Priya collaborated with IIM alumni – Guruprasad Bangle and Naveen Galithoti in beginning of year 2013 and launched Properji in August 2013 to be a pro-buyer online real estate portal.
While in India, there are already property listing sites and even property marketing sites, Properji is trying to bring whole new concept, as when we go through the website it display the ratings of builders & properties with facts which is unique to it. This makes it different from listing site like 99acres, Housing.com, Magicbricks etc and property marketing sites like Indiahomes, Proptiger etc.
“Our vision is to be a trustworthy partner for home buyers in India by presenting them with fact-based independent research and building a team of highly qualified pro-buyer property advisors,” says the company.
What All It Does?
Properji provides consumers with fact-based independent research reports on properties and brokers. Consumers can choose subscription packages and accordingly, Properji team of senior property advisors assist the users.
Fraud Protection Scheme: It has assured users that it will cover up to Rs.1 Cr in case any intention of fraud by the property developer is detected for the property transaction done through Properji.
Buy-back guarantee: If the customer isn’t happy with the investment during a period of 2 years from the date of purchase of property, Properji stands committed to buy back the property after deducting administrative expenses.
“The current online real-estate scenario offers little or no buyer’s assistance. The listing sites are mere classifieds with no transaction assistance or buyer assurance and act as a playground for brokers, while marketing sites are an extension of the builder’s sales and marketing department keen on hard-selling any property to earn commission. This is where exactly Properji comes in, to provide the user with an unbiased facts about the property, builder and the area,” says the company.
The Pro-buyer Approach
Its pro-buyer approach in the ratings which it openly display on the website and in the unbiased research reports, is what it claims to be a point of differentiator from others. As a part of Pro-buyer Approach, it also produce research on new projects, Standardize parameters to compare across projects, Rate builders based on success of past projects.
Charging a subscription fee from users, will users pay?
As per the company, providing unbiased and fact based research to the users which others don’t do, users are finding value in paying for its services. What more, the site has already have paying users.
Though the website provides basic services for free, Basic Package includes the services of identifying the right property and securing the best deal. However, if users wants value-added services such as legal review, post-purchase liaison with builder, fraud coverage, buyback guarantee etc. one will need to upgrade to Standard or Premium Package at a nominal fee.
Currently, it has close to 800 users who have signed-up for its services and till now, it has helped its users to buy properties worth over Rs 20 Cr from August 2013.
Before starting Properji, founder Priya Maheshwari had led client relationships and business development at Tata Group and drove infrastructure, utility and environment- related research at Black & Veatch in US and India. Naveen Galithoti had previously co-founded education startup eDreams Edusoft. Whereas, Guru brings domain knowledge as his family is in real estate sector for the past 15 years.
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