Today we are interviewing Meg McQuillan, one of the co-founders of a new rent service, Get Digs, newly launched in Ontario by RBC Ventures. Get Digs wants to make rent a great experience rather than a series of annoying hurdles and they’re starting with the way renters pay rent!
1) Please tell us about yourself?
I am one of the co-founders of Get Digs, where I’m focused on understanding and addressing the challenges that renters and landlords experience in the Canadian rental market. I’ve been a renter for the past decade – 5 years of which have been spent in Toronto. I’m among the 45% of Torontonians that rent today, meaning I have a vested interest in creating a service that makes rent simpler, more flexible and rewarding for renters.
2) What were some of the challenges you faced when starting Get Digs? What has kept you going?
People have been paying rent by cheque for what feels like forever. Because this is such an entrenched practice in Canada, convincing landlords that there is a better way to get paid presents obvious challenges. That said, we’ve spent a lot of time talking to landlords and we’ve heard, across the board, that cash flow on the first of the month is what keeps them up at night.
This insight drove the development of our solution for landlords: reducing the risk around rental income. By intermediating rent payments, we’re able to ensure landlords get paid on time, even when their renters pay rent late – up to four months of consecutive renter non-payment.
3) What makes you different from other websites out there?
We want to improve the rent payment experience for both renters and landlords, and the way we’re going about this is unique in two ways. First, unlike other rent payment services, paying rent on Get Digs allows you to earn rewards points on your rent – with zero transaction fees. Second, we’re offering value to landlords by reducing the risk around rental income.
4) Who should join Get Digs? And what do I get for being a member?
Anyone who rents today in Ontario should join Get Digs – there is no cost for renters. It is an opportunity to pay rent the way you choose and potentially collect significant rewards points on your largest transaction each month using the rewards card of your choice – like one from RBC’s lineup of travel or reward cards (we couldn’t help ourselves!).
5) What can we look forward to next with Get Digs?
There’s a ton to look forward to. We’re launching a new appointment booking tool that will eliminate the back-and-forth that comes with booking a viewing appointment with a landlord or realtor. Consider how easy it is to make a restaurant reservation on OpenTable; that’s how easy we’re making it to schedule viewing appointments.
6) What advice would you give “Pointshoggers” when it comes to earning rewards?
As renters, we understand that rent is often our biggest expense each month. Why not take advantage of an opportunity to earn points on this where you previously couldn’t?
7) Any final thoughts?
We recently launched our service in Ontario and wanted to use this opportunity to ask readers, “What would make Get Digs the best rental service out there for renters or landlords?” The first 25 respondents will receive a $25.00CAD Amazon gift card. Please get in touch by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org; I’m looking forward to hearing from you!