An Australian startup has created a platform that tests the market value of a house without actually putting it on the market.
Nokk came about when the co-founder Ben Voltz moved to Melbourne but had trouble finding suitable homes for sale in the suburb his family desired.
A bar conversation with co-founder Williams Evans led them to conclude that everyone and everything has a price.
So Voltz dropped leaflets in letterboxes in his target suburb to see if any owners wanted to chat.
"I was surprised to hear from 18 homeowners welcoming me to the area and wanting to have a conversation," Voltz told Yahoo Finance.
"From door-knocking and letterboxing, I found [home owners] were fearful of the commitment of having a 'for sale' signboard out the front."
The Nokk platform arose out of that situation to allow property owners to post an online ‘profile’ of their home without the pressure of putting it on the market.
Buyers can then browse through the areas they like and make gentle enquiries on properties they're interested in.
Nokk, which Voltz describes as "LinkedIn for houses", has gained traction in the two big cities of Sydney and Melbourne after one year of operation. The platform seems to be popular in more affluent suburbs.
“You often see properties here that you don't see anywhere else,” said Voltz.
The platform is now also collaborating with the real estate industry, with both sellers' and buyers' agents involved, Voltz told Yahoo Finance.
"This year we're building a whole lot of tools for industry… So estate agents can populate their off-market properties on our platform.
"It'll be a real leap for us because not only do we have properties that are off-market… we'll also have access to agents' off-market properties as well."
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