Lettings supplier Blinc UK has acquired a 50% stake in Pink Chilli, a new pre-tenancy software platform for letting agents.
Pink Chilli allows agencies to streamline all their tenancies from holding deposit stage to move-in in any way they want and works for both individuals and large teams.
According to Blinc UK, which provides tenant referencing and deposit replacement services, the software represents the perfect solution for letting agents adapting to more remote and flexible working patterns post-Covid-19.
"We have partnered with Pink Chilli to bring together our experience as a leading supplier run by former agents with cutting-edge software development," says Darren Bignall, director of Blinc UK.
"Following three years of development, we are now able to bring software to market which works in a way a letting agent thinks, allowing them to carry out processes in any order."
Pink Chilli is not 'on rails', allowing agents to carry out the pre-tenancy process in a way that suits their working practices.
It includes e-signing for all documents, draft and final tenancy agreements, compliance documents and prescribed information.
The software can be used to send landlord updates and manage payment requests with access to fully integrated referencing, rent guarantee, AML checks and deposit replacement. Agents can also use their own tenancy agreements and addendum terms and conditions.
"Providing software which is not 'on rails' means agents can continue to work in the way that suits them while benefiting from fully integrated services which are not plugged in from other suppliers," explains Bignall.
He says that with demand for rental properties reaching record levels in recent weeks, it's important for agents to be able to offer a fast and efficient pre-tenancy service.
Pink Chilli also has a tenant dashboard, which allows renters and guarantors to see what tasks are outstanding.
They can view and e-sign draft and completed documents via the portal, sending instant updates to agents once tasks are completed to help keep things moving.
"It's important for prospective tenants to know where they stand and providing them with a dashboard gives them increased ownership and encourages them to be more proactive," Bignall explains.
"If both sides of the transaction are aware of its status and agents are notified as soon as a tenant or guarantor completes an action, the move-in process can be significantly quicker."
He adds that the dashboard means tenants will no longer have to chase agents for updates, which reduces stress for both parties.
Blinc UK says agents' working patterns had slowly been changing in recent years but that change has been accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
"We have been working on this software for over three years, but the impact of the pandemic has brought the need for this kind of pre-tenancy solution sharply into focus," Bignall suggests.
"During lockdown, we heard from letting agencies which only had one person managing new tenancies as they were the only person with access to the relevant files. This is inefficient and unnecessarily slows down the process."
"As more agents work to different hours from various locations, the Pink Chilli platform aims to make the pre-tenancy process more streamlined and accessible with unlimited users per branch and solutions for multi-branch users," he concludes.