Rabbu, a new smart home platform for renting out spare rooms

February 20, 2019
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Emir Dukic and his wife bought a house in the city center of Charlotte, North Carolina, while Dukic was working in software. The in-law suite they purchased was above a detached garage. This is similar to how many homeowners around the globe who list on Airbnb earn an extra income.

The hope for a little side money turned into a real hustle as the garage unit ended up generating enough revenue to pay their mortgage each month. According to some calculations, the spare bedroom market is quickly growing to more than $170 billion, just in the US.

In 2016, the company that Dukic was working at was acquired, and he was looking for his next move.

“Then I realized I already had a business in my backyard. My initial thoughts were, 'Can I replicate this? And is it scalable?'” Dukic pondered.

To test his idea, Dukic visited property owners near his area and offered to paid them a premium on their monthly rent if they allowed him to turn their extra home units into short-term rentals. He successfully on-boarded a few in late 2016 and brought on CTO and co-founder James Strong to build a platform to automate and manage the properties.

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The startup, Rabbu, quickly grew to 25 properties in 2017. They offered a curated hotel-level experience for guests and a turn-key experience for property owners, taking on guest communication, cleaning, listing, and repairs and maintenance as necessary.

Rabbu currently offers two plans: a fixed plan where property owners sign a 12-month lease contract with monthly payments, and a flex plan charged on a per-booking basis.

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February 20, 2019

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