A new social media platform for property and real estate has launched in Australia.
Called Housenet.com.au, the ‘Facebook for real estate’ platform is the brainchild of Darren Moffatt, who says his new venture offers a way around Australia’s “undemocratic” online property listings market.
“Australians love property, and they love to talk about it. So it seems really unfair that the vast majority of portal users – consumers – are actually locked out of the content creation process. The portals either ban home owners from directly listing their properties, or they charge a prohibitive fee to do so,” Moffatt said in a press release.
“We think this is undemocratic, and we’re just crazy enough to do something about it. On Housenet, anyone can create an awesome property listing for free,” he said.
Moffatt said that while the big property listings operators like Fairfax and REA had a presence on social media, users were not able to interact within their portals. “Is it about control, or just a slowness to adapt?” Moffatt asked.
The Housenet site enables users to create a profile, advertise property for rent or sale, chat, discuss issues in forums, write blogs and ‘follow’ property agents.
“Real estate agents across the land complain long and loud about the ever increasing fees charged by some portals. Whether these fees are ultimately paid from their profit margin, or by vendors, it’s bad for home owners and for small business,” Moffatt said.
We’re making online property fair, fun and free,” he said.
Housenet has plans to run digital campaigns to promote the site in the coming weeks, with a ramp up to come in new year.