Student rental platform University Cribs introduces virtual reality property viewing

Software uses 360 photography, image stitching and VR tour creation to allow prospective student renters to view properties free from time constraints

University Cribs, the Startups 100-featured online platform for student property rental, has launched virtual reality (VR) software that enables students to view properties.

The announcement follows the company’s close of a £450,00 seed funding round in September, and allows accommodation providers and letting agents to provide 360 photography, image stitching and VR tour creation,

Meanwhile, students have the ability to view properties free from the time constraints of lectures and part-time work, and without having to wait until all housemates are free.

University Cribs hopes the innovation will enable it to drive additional revenue in the student rental market. To coincide with the launch, it has opened entries for Britain’s Best Student Properties; a competition that will select 10 properties across the UK to receive free virtual reality filming.

Dan Jefferys, co-founder of University Cribs, said: “Our goal, and what drives us here at University Cribs, is to use digital technology to improve and find value in the student housing market. We want to help students find a place they can call home.

“The use of VR in the property industry previously emerged in high-end luxury sales, but we see its real value in student rentals – an international market with multiple parties conducting property searches on a frequent basis.”

Raffaele Russo, director of student accommodation company Loc8Me, added: “We are excited about the potential of VR in our business. It allows our agents to make smarter use of their time, with fewer viewings of properties before a tenancy is agreed.

“With virtual reality, the concept of that second viewing may disappear because tenants arrive having already seen it online in a close to real-life as possible. […] It will be a great help for logging maintenance issues too.”

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