The solution to housing problems sitting under students’ noses – The Post

The solution to housing problems sitting under students’ noses

Housinganywhere.com addresses a serious issue that often leads to cancelled plans for young people

(photo: Athena Barris, promotion co-ordinator at HousingAnywhere.com
April 27th, 2017 5:00 pm| by Jessica Cavallaro
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You often hear of students having difficulty finding housing while abroad, whether it be for a job, to study, or to explore. Alessandro Colucci, a representative of HousingAnywhere, says it’s a shame that people still think this and offers a solution.  HousingAnywhere has been active in Denmark since 2015, holding rooms and apartments available for rent.

Global focus
Thanks to advances in technology and trade, the world is becoming a lot more globalised and interconnected.  Students in all parts of the world are becoming more inclined to take a leap of faith and study abroad.  Knowing this, HousingAnywhere accommodates on an international level.

HousingAnywhere, a Dutch-based startup, provides a safe online housing platform for university and higher education students.  With the website, students can rent out their rooms to incoming students and landlords can list their rooms, but only if they are verified by HousingAnywhere.  The secure booking system of the site ensures security for its users, especially as many of the students using the site are based abroad.

Niels van Deuren founded the company, headquartered in Rotterdam, in the Netherlands, in 2009.  There is a team of 50 people from 14 countries all collaborating on the project.  An average of 400 rooms is posted worldwide on the platform every week.

Active in 118 countries
HousingAnywhere is currently active in 118 countries and more than 530 cities, thanks to its partnerships with over 120 universities worldwide. The mission is to reach 1000 universities by the end of 2020.  “We don’t provide real housing solution to students”, says van Deuren, founder of HousingAnywhere.com, “but we actually use current solutions more efficiently. By [achieving our mission], we will be sure to face in a better way an important problem that is affecting international students.”

The company also effectively uses 100 student ambassadors to achieve their mission.  As a representative of HousingAnywhere, Colucci’s main responsibility is to raise awareness of the platform in Copenhagen, specifically at ZIBAT University.

Crosses language barriers
“My tasks include promoting the platform to local hostels, tourist information points, student bars, as well as to incoming and outbound exchange students at the local universities,” said Colucci.  “I used the platform myself to rent out my room in Copenhagen when I went on exchange abroad last fall, and I was really satisfied with how safe and easy to use it was. So, I thought that once I came back to Copenhagen, I would start spreading awareness of the website among my fellow students.”

Colucci also had the chance to interview the student who rented his room using the platform.  “He was really happy with the platform because it was safe, easy to use, and, most importantly, listings were mostly in English, which is very convenient for incoming exchange students who don’t speak any Danish,” he said.