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Startup helping small landlords Marble raises $2M

Marble says it aims to be a complete alternative to property managers

Marble, a rental management proptech working with smaller landlords, today announced raising $2 million, according to GeekWire.

The company says it generates approximately $30,000 in monthly revenue from its subscription-based alternative property management platform, and has 600 homes on its portfolio spanning across more than 20 cities in the US. 

Daniel Li, a former software engineer at Facebook and Daniel Kim, a former software engineer at Adobe, started the company due to a college experience that involved waiting 18 months for a leaky roof to be fixed.

Marble also participated in Y Combinator’s accelerator program last summer (S21), and helps property owners find locations, place tenants, and aids in rent collection and maintenance. Today its investors include 1984 Ventures, Y Combinator, Bragiel Brothers, and others.

The company did say that it is gross margin positive and makes money on a unit basis, but did not disclose if it was profitable. Marble also noted that it usually helps smaller landlords, which it defines as investors with less than 20 properties under their management.

Marble says through its $50 per month service subscription model it wants to replace “as many of the jobs typically done by landlords or property managers with software components”. While the company faces a long list of competitors in the large, massively fragmented property management market, Li says the company aims to provide a deeper solution that can actually replace the need for a property manager.

“They are just trying to build a software layer for more do-it-yourself landlords,” Li told GeekWire, speaking of the competition. “I don’t believe that they’ve fully internalized what it would mean to actually become an alternative to a full-time property manager.”

Competitors in the “mom-and-pop landlord” property management segment include startups like ​​Innago, RentRedi and Havium, and larger market players such as Avail and Apartments.com.

All of these are attempting to target the 48 million rented properties in the U.S., which expected to grow and made up 28% of U.S. single-family home sales in the first quarter of 2022. The number is a hike of 19% from the Q1 of last year, according to a Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies report.

Currently Marble also faces challenges from its “financial tech component” and an influx of transactions on it, which it says has led to delays in getting payments from tenants (currently taking three days). It says it aims to reduce this payment gap to less than a day.

In other recent proptech news, Research and Markets released its Smart Workplace Market report. Tour24, an interactive and audio/visual apartment tours platform, was selected by Landmark Properties as its self-guided tour provider.

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