Introducing Safely Finance for Communities

Renting

The ultimate amenity is cash in your pocket.

Consider your moving costs: thousands of dollars, some locked up in a deposit, that generate no value for you while you rent. Some leases include pet deposits, application fees, and other charges. Each incremental item increases the financial burden of moving, not to mention the headache of transferring funds back-and-forth and juggling credit cards. The price of moving quickly adds up, not just in money but also in time. Would both time and money not be put to better use investing, building an emergency account, or finding truly useful things for your new home, like furniture?

You might wonder how, in the age of nonstop news about homeownership, a focus on renters could remain relevant. If we were not lifelong renters, we would wonder about it, too.

Solving a big problem

There are nearly 48.2 million homes for rent in the US. Younger people, specifically those under 35, are far more likely to rent than any other age group. Every year, a massive wave of 20 and 30-somethings graduate from college, leave home to find work, or finish graduate programs and chase a dream job. These millions of future nurses, software engineers, doctors, lawyers, public servants, and others hit the housing market year after year with a growing demand for rentals, a more flexible lifestyle, and fewer major assets tying them down.

Today, these renters burn through savings and take on expensive debt to move. Survey data shows that the average interstate move costs $4,100 while the median young professional savings balance stands at $3,200. How do renters bridge this gap? Most often, with high-rate credit cards that accrue compounding interest on outstanding balances. A select few might borrow from family or friends. The rest, unfortunately, simply cannot move. At a point in life when America’s renters should be building a stable financial foundation, instead, they worry about building credit, saving for retirement, and spending up to $10,000 or more to move and pursue better opportunities.

Listening to our customers

Whether you read this as a renter or a longtime homeowner, surely the pain point is obvious. Building a bespoke financial partner for America’s renters might not carry headlines of massive mortgage sums or record-breaking home prices, but in a whole other way it’s a more important if not bigger problem. Research shows when people cannot relocate to higher productivity metro areas it impacts economic growth. America’s young professionals and renters are the future. They need a strong foundation supporting them from day one.

And yet, a lot of renters do not have a great way to get on the path and stay on the path toward financial fitness. Some renters earn large paychecks but carry equally large student loan payments. Others have offers for dream jobs in hand but no savings to power a relocation. Still more know what it takes to get on the path but cannot manage the timing of their cash flows. They lack credit history and therefore face what can feel like an insurmountable barrier to accessing everyday credit tools. We wondered what keeps people from reaching housing and work goals alongside financial goals and, unsurprisingly, we heard these answers in most conversations.

Avoiding the pitfalls of incumbents

You might think that personal loans offer a great option for these renters. After all, how much can one loan vary from another? After a decade and more of work in financial services, lending, and technology, we know these products are decidedly not designed for renters. Many lenders charge heavy origination fees that can eat into as much as 5% or more of loan funds. As a small example, when you need to borrow $100 to buy a chair, then $95 simply does not cut it and paying interest on $100 when you only receive $95 makes equally little sense. Details like these often obscure the reality of a financial agreement. We find this opaqueness especially troublesome when traditional financial institutions target less experienced customers.

Often the best financial products are only available to the wealthiest clients, such as with private banks and high net worth wealth management groups. What if instead a financial partner offered tools that helped young professionals navigate early financial planning decision points, like renting, with as much attention?

We fully believe that solution is Safely Finance and we are on a mission to help millions of Americans generate wealth with good financial decision-making. We are starting with renting because it is the biggest early financial decision most people make in starting adult life. Here, not only can we make a major impact on leasing outcomes, but also in the experience of finding, applying for, and moving into a new rental home.

What Safely Finance offers today

A more affordable way to move

Our first product helps renters break up expensive move-in costs into smaller, more affordable monthly payments. Remember the gap between the cost to move and savings? This problem directly solves that pain point. Instead of shelling out up to $10,000 for a security deposit, pet deposit, move-in fees, and basic furniture, renters can now pay $0 at move-in and instead pay smaller amounts over time. This is rent now, pay later.

Sign up in minutes

You can sign up in minutes directly with Safely Finance on our website or through your property manager or landlord. In both cases, Safely Finance will first gather a little information about you to determine if you qualify. If your property does not yet offer Safely Finance but you want your landlord to know about us, email us here.

See your offers without impacting your credit

Once qualified, Safely Finance will show you your payment plan options. You can select the offer that best fits your specific situation. For example, some customers may prefer to maintain a lower monthly payment over a longer time. Others might only need a few months to build their financial foundation and might prefer a shorter period to pay.

Fast funding for your move

After you select an offer, we just need a bit more information to know where to send your loan funds. For communities and properties partnering with Safely Finance, we can send any portion needed for deposits or fees directly to your landlord or property manager. For all your other moving needs, Safely Finance will fund your loan dollars directly to your preferred bank account, usually within 48 hours after you choose to pay with Safely Finance.

No fees

From there, you simply make your payments on time each month until you hit the full amount. There are no origination fees and no other hidden fees. Our team is a group of dedicated lifelong renters, and we designed this product to be something we would feel proud to offer.

Committing to our customers

We are very aware that you are trusting us with two of the most important areas in your life – your housing and financial foundation. We take this so, so seriously. We are not the type of people who like to be front and center. We like to solve interesting problems in such a way that it is almost unnoticeable. Our style is making things seamlessly easier and better.

We hope that Safely Finance does this for our customers’ lives. Because for decisions that could cause so much anxiety around opportunity cost, the goal is to worry about them as little as possible. If you are less stressed as you plan a move, we have done our jobs.

And we mean it: we want you to feel 100% secure trusting us to help you remove the financial stress from moving. So, we are here and ready to answer any question you have. If you are wondering what it would look like to work with us, for yourselves or your tenants, or if you just want some cool moving and renting trivia (we are experts after all), feel free to send us a message. You can email us at hi@safelyfinance.co or trivia@safelyfinance.co, or send us a message on social media.

Sources:

https://www.pewresearch.org/

https://www.apartments.com/

https://www.apartmentguide.com/

https://www.forbes.com/

https://www.nytimes.com/