After a frustrating apartment search, Caren Maio launched Nestio in 2011 to help landlords and brokers manage rental inventory online instead of by spreadsheet. Seven years later, Nestio is getting a major overhaul to add real-time marketing and leasing tools.
Nestio 2.0, which goes live today, gives landlords a single dashboard they can use to toggle between inventory management, marketing and leasing. The new leasing tool tracks all inquiries, tours and signed leases. The platform also acts as a hub of communication by syncing emails and text messages from clients in one place, which lets teams collaborate in real time. Landlords and agents can check in anytime to get a quick snapshot of those activities — or do a deeper dive into how the portfolio is performing.
According to Maio, the change is consistent with her goal of making leasing more efficient particularly for owners and brokers who’ve gotten used to manually tracking their marketing efforts and taking stock at the end of each month.
“From the time you book a tour through closing a deal, there’s a ton of inefficiency there,” she said.
Nestio’s new features are several months in the making and follow a $4.5 million “strategic” fundraising round over the summer.
To date, the New York City-based startup has raised $16.4 million, and its most recent round included heavy-hitters in New York real estate circles, including Rudin Ventures and the Moinian Group’s venture arm Currency M.
In recent years, the company has added new features on an incremental basis — such as consumer-facing websites and the ability to book tours online.
Nestio’s new platform integrates those functions with others. For example, the company uses artificial intelligence to automate its responses to potential renters, so that if someone requesting a tour mentions their pet in an email, they receive a response that references the building’s pet policy. “It almost acts like a sales assistant for the leasing team,” Maio said.
The integrated platform logs a slew of details that landlords can analyze — such as how many inquiries were received and from where, how many tours were scheduled and how many leases signed.
Nestio’s new offerings come as the notoriously low-tech real estate industry begins to embrace data analysis tools and new technology platforms.
“What’s really exciting for us is more insight into potential leads and the dashboard, tracking it in real time,” said Michael Rudin, of Rudin Ventures.
One of the dashboard’s new data points is feedback on deals that fell through — giving landlords insight into whether the unit is priced right for the current market.
Rudin said Nestio’s additional features are a boon to landlords in any market. “In a down market, it’s understanding reasons for not signing a lease at your property,” he said. “In an up market, it’s being able to respond more efficiently, schedule more tours and be on top of things. I mean, everyone suffers from missed email syndrome. When you’re trying to rent apartments, that first impression is really important.”