A new product is causing quite a stir on the popular tool discovery website ProductHunt. It isn’t an app or a new social media platform, the types of products that usually top the popularity lists, but instead it’s an incentive program that has been added to Flip’s already robust marketplace for lease sublets and takeovers. The program, called Bounties, lets lease holders trying to find legal ways out of their contractual rental obligations offer a referral fee.
When asked how she came up with this inventive idea, Flip’s founder Susannah Vila said it came from her users, “One of our users in particular said, ‘I want an easier way to pay cash to anyone who will find me a subletter!’ So we can’t really take credit for the idea.” She has already seen renters desperate to get out of a lease offer hundreds or even thousands of dollars to find qualified candidates to take sign their lease over to.
The process is made simple and effective by providing a unique link that anyone can easily share. If it gets used, the creator gets paid. There could become a group of regular “hunters” that are constantly looking for an income stream. “There’s no limit to how many bounties you can hunt. Share links. Wait. Earn money,” Susannah wrote in her ProductHunt description.
Bounties is yet another way for Flip to offer liquidity to renters. Even if they are trapped into long term, expensive rents, tenants are now able to find a legal way to sublet or swap. As rents rise, the need for tenants to get out of the remaining portion of a lease will only increase. Demand for flexibility has driven growth in other platforms that can create more seamless switching of assets. OpenDoor has made big inroads by allowing homeowners to sell their houses easily and quickly.
It is not often that a real estate technology gets much buzz from the general public. That is why it is so impressive that Bounties has done so well on the ProductHunt platform. At the time of writing this the Bounties review had received 421 up-votes. This can only have good implications for the amount of adoption that Flip is likely to drive with this creative new program.