Sunday 25 February 2018

‘It will be like Trip Advisor for renters’ – The new site which will allow people to rate the properties they rent

DwellDown founder Chris Lynch
DwellDown founder Chris Lynch
DwellDown aims to 'reduce renters' risks'
Amy Molloy

Amy Molloy

A new website which aims to ‘reduce renters’ risks’ by allowing them to rate and review the properties they rent has been launched by a man inspired by his own horrible experience.

DwellDown consists of a ten question survey which will serve as a database for people looking to rent accommodation in Dublin.

The site’s founder, Chris Lynch, has been living in Ireland for two years and recently moved house with his wife and young child.

Within three weeks of moving into their new home, they realised they made a mistake.

The place was so cold and damp that their child had to wear winter clothes inside.

A number of amenities in the kitchen weren’t working and the landlord ignored their requests to fix them. 

When Chris got in touch with the previous tenants, asking why they had moved house, they informed him that there was no way they could raise a child there.

“That is when the idea came to me,” Chris told Independent.ie.

“I thought a site where people would share their living experiences would offer a platform which ensured better transparency in the rental market would help people make better decisions.”

“The idea is to be a Trip Advisor or a Glassdoor, it will be like a Trip Advisor for renters - a neutral place where tenants can go and share their rental experiences based on quality, price,  communication and the neighbourhood,” he added.

So far, 1,000 people have completed the survey.

“There are good reviews and bad reviews. Probably the most negative would be dampness and a lack of speediness to fix things and get things done.

“Also there are people reaching out saying ‘This is a fantastic place to live, I would recommend this to students and families,’ which is good to know too.”

Chris is hoping that the site will be international by this time next year.

Originally from Philadelphia, he met his Irish wife Helen in New York and moved to Ireland.

“Right now we want to help the community in Dublin, but I’m hoping it will eventually be international.”

When asked if DwellDown might upset landlords who are renting substandard properties, he said it is important that tenants come together.

“I’m not worried about slandering or breaking any laws, it is just a platform for people to voice their concerns.

“If people can go to Glassdoor and rate their jobs, I’m sure their employers aren’t happy, but this is necessary to help the rental crisis in Ireland.”

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