The real estate industry has not been immune to technological disruption from apps over the past few years.
Purplebricks and buyMyplace have aimed to cut out the middle man from the property sale process, saving sellers and buyers the large costs of real estate agency commissions.
Now the claws are out for real estate agents when it comes to renting and leasing, with a flood of new apps and platforms on their way to allow tenants and landlords to negotiate rental terms without an agent.
There are three to look out for: LiveOffer, backed by US-headquarted and ASX-listed Property Connect; Rentwolf, a local start-up; and Rentberry, a US start-up coming soon to Australia.
These apps aim to simulate a rent-bidding process between potential renters and landlords, allowing renters to compete against each other for the property.
Some also allow you to bargain with landlords to secure the property, such as offering to bring forward the move-in date or committing to long-term leases.
The Tenants Unions in both NSW and Victoria are pushing to make rent-bidding illegal, fearing it will lead to worsening rental affordability and conditions for tenants.