CEO of REA Group invests in Real Estate Software Company “HOUSL”

HOUSL last week announced that Greg Ellis, the CEO of REA Group ( has invested in the HOUSL business.

Recently awarded 3rd place in BRW’s “most innovative Australian companies of 2012”, HOUSL is a complete online real estate identity verification system and solutions platform that enables tenants to apply for rental properties instantly using their mobile phones.

Greg Ellis joins a strong team that already includes Daniel O’Brien Director of CBRE Asia Pacific and CEO Stuart Rutherford. Rutherford brings a wealth of senior management experience from key roles with companies including McGrath Estate Agents, Fosters/CUB and Levi Strauss & Co, which included time based in the U.S. market.

Ellis commented:

“HOUSL will revolutionise how the Real Estate industry locally and globally, approaches the identification and evaluation of prospective tenants and buyers in the market. In comparison to the existing players in this market, in my view HOUSL is light years ahead. My experience in this area is testament to the quality of the product, and I’m excited to be an investor as real estate is just one application for this technology”.

Co-Founder, Daniel O’Brien said:

“Our initial roll out targets the Eastern States of Australia where there are approximately 1,600,000 new leases signed every year. That alone will provide a significant revenue stream” Daniel added.

With aggressive goals to secure a large slice of the market, HOUSL have launched a competition where the winning tenant will receive 1 Year’s free rent (more information and competition details can be found on the website:

HOUSL will also offer the capability for advertisers to specifically target its customers, and at the most critical times. HOUSL knows when a tenant applies for, and agrees to sign a lease, so home and contents insurance companies, removalists, and utility connection companies etc, will be able to reach these tenants directly, at the critical moment of the lease process. It is extremely powerful information.

HOUSL was created to take advantage of emerging technologies and improve an outdated and cumbersome rental property application process.

Utilizing a QR code that is specifically assigned to a rental property, applicants are able to scan the QR code with their smart phone while inspecting a rental property and submit an application prior to even leaving the property.

Through their web portal, agents then receive all applications for the property in one convenient place.

qr codes, rental application management,

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About The Insider

Ryan has been involved in the real estate industry for a number of years. During this time he has operated web based real estate businesses along with provided consulting to the real estate software development industry. Ryan operates and is actively involved with the design and development of real estate systems, software and web sites in the United States, Australia and New Zealand.

5 Responses to CEO of REA Group invests in Real Estate Software Company “HOUSL”

  1. Peter Ricci March 22, 2013 at 4:05 am #

    Will be interesting to see how this technology goes competing with 1form as they appear to have industry dominance.

  2. Ryan O'Grady March 23, 2013 at 9:24 am #

    This technology is more innovative than 1form and they would be paying particular attention to it. I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re already looking at ways to add similar enhancements to their offering.

  3. Glenn Batten March 23, 2013 at 10:23 am #

    It may be more innovative but 1Form has the market, they have proven to be flexibile enough that they are open to change and you can’t beat their pricing model for agents.

    It will be a hard fight to get agents to move away from that model especially for a paid solution.

  4. Ryan O'Grady March 23, 2013 at 10:39 am #

    Yeah it will be very tough for them. Maybe REA will ditch using 1form and replace it with Housl.

  5. Glenn Batten March 23, 2013 at 1:14 pm #

    To change service providers based on his own personal investment might be an interesting situation especially when the current solution is free and is used by so many agents now. Unless REA has shares as well as their cheif I just cant see him replacing it without it becoming a huge issue for him… but offering both options on the REA platform would probably be possible.

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