A new impact start-up, PetsScore launches today on a mission to help pet owners globally secure rental properties and to help landlords analyse the risk of a pet tenant at the click of a button. Millions of pet owners in the UK and beyond face the choice between lying to their landlords or giving up their much-loved pet, as around 90% of rental properties worldwide do not allow pets.
This is due to a lack of tools built specifically for landlords and letting agents to assess the risk of pets. PetsScore is the first platform of its kind offering on demand pet referencing and risk scoring.
The new PetsScore platform has also signed a letter of intent with leading inventory software business InventoryBase to bring the first ever pet check ins and check outs to the property market – which will make it even easier for landlords to manage pet tenants.
Several hundred letting agents across the UK have signed up to PetsScore prior to launch, including Connells, Wentworth, Howdy, Phillips & Stubbs etc. PetsScore is community-driven and was founded by fintech and crypto-currency pioneer Natasha Homer-Earley, who spent six months, on her return to the UK from Italy, looking for a pet-friendly rental for her and her four year old dog.
Homer-Earley’s twenty year career in technology has seen her hold C-suite roles at Komodo, the number one privacy blockchain, RUON, and Paysafecard, as well as serving as an advisor to top accelerators, such as Level39, and Unicorns like Babylon Health. She also brings deep property expertise to the business, as her family own and run a property portfolio, property development business and lettings agency.
Pet ownership in the UK is greater than at any point in history, with more than 3.2m pets added to locked-down households during the coronavirus crisis, yet fewer than 7% of rental properties in the UK formally accept tenants with pets.
This leaves millions of pet owners hiding their pets from landlords, facing the prospect of having to give up their cat or dog or being evicted. The Dogs’ Trust recently reported a 35% increase in calls relating to giving up dogs.
PetsScore is working on further fintech products on top of its core pet referencing service which will be available in the months after launch.
Homer-Earley said: “We’re at the precipice of a disaster for pets and their owners globally. Pet ownership is at an all-time high and there is a chasm between the availability of pet-friendly rental properties and the overwhelming demand for them.
“Until now, there has been no simple solution for landlords looking to assess the risk of taking on a pet tenant. PetsScore makes this easy and affordable at scale for the first time. We have plans to be in multiple markets within twelve months owing to the global need for a solution to this very real problem.
“Increasing the number of pet-friendly rental properties is long overdue and is of critical importance for millennials in particular: 33% of this age group will rent for life, if they haven’t bought a home by 40.”
Jof Walters, founder of pre-seed investors Million Labs, which have helped to launch 760 startups worldwide using no-code technology said: “Million Labs sets out to back the next big thing, early – and we believe PetsScore is just that. A clean, brilliant tech solution to a very real problem that affects millions worldwide on a human and commercial level. PetsScore is an impact startup that has aims to do good and has a robust business model. We’d have been barking mad to miss out on this one.”