Sunroom Rentals, a real estate tech startup that helps property managers and landlords lease their units, announced Wednesday it closed on an $11 million Series A round led by Gigafund, as first reported by TechCrunch.
The company launched in 2018 to help make it easier for renters to find, tour, apply for and move into apartments and houses around the city — disrupting an area of real estate that few other tech startups had looked at before, according to Zac Maurais, Sunroom Rentals’ co-founder and president.
“You see most of the new digital products focusing on the home sale transaction side — Redfin, Compass and other new-school mortgage companies,” Maurais told Built In at the time. “After discussions about the rental process with both landlords and renters, we figured this would be a good way to enter the market.”
Sunroom is easy to use: Renters simply enter search criteria into the platform, tour the properties they like, and apply on the site when they are ready. All homes listed on the site are equipped with self-showing locks for private in-person showings or online 360-degree tours for virtual showings, and the company has a team of representatives standing by to help seven days a week. Sunroom Rentals is free to use for renters since the company charges landlords and property managers to post on its site.
To date, Sunroom Rentals has had more than 100,000 renters sign up for its services in Austin, which accounts for roughly 10 percent of renters in the fast-growing metro area, Maurais told TechCrunch. He also attributed much of the company’s success lately to today’s socially distant reality amid the pandemic.
Indeed, this reality has had a massive impact on real estate at large, forcing the notoriously tech-averse industry to innovate and pushing the startups that already have been ahead. For example, just last week Knock, a Seattle-based proptech startup that helps landlords better manage their tenants, raised $20 million. Knock claimed 2020 was its “best year ever,” business-wise.
As for Sunroom Rentals, the Austin-based company said in a recent LinkedIn post that it plans to use this fresh capital to expand across Texas, “streamlining the leasing process for property managers, apartment owners and renters.” The company is also hiring, with a handful of open tech jobs listed on its careers page.