Kettel is a free platform dedicated to helping first-time buyers discover, finance and complete their home purchases. We provide comprehensive education on the purchase process, 1:1 personalised guidance and vetted offerings from mortgage brokers, conveyancers and surveyors who specialise in working with first-time buyers. It was built out of the frustration that first-time buyers have been historically neglected by the industry due to their perceived lack of value and level of hand-holding required.
Alex (CTO and Co-founder) and I share the same vision and have both recently come from building companies that were changing the landscape of residential property in the rental and home management space. What was unique about the businesses that we’d first built is that the focus was on the tenant or the owner. The first iteration of PropTech has been focused on building for agents, sellers and developers.
Our mutual passion for building products that deliver an amazing experience for overlooked customers has led us to focus on helping first-time buyers. With the existing gap between homeowners and those looking to buy being wider than ever, Kettel provides first-time buyers with the knowledge and confidence to make informed decisions.
How did you come up with the idea for the company?
Millennials and Gen Zs are now accustomed to being able to do everything on their phone while getting a much better level of service and transparency into their purchases. We wondered how you could order takeaway, book travel or even buy a car from your phone, but one of the biggest and most important purchases of your life wasn’t supported by technology. It was this that sparked the idea for Kettel.
We initially spoke with hundreds of renters who said they’d like to buy, but weren’t sure how to go about it. When we started to do our research, it quickly became clear that all first-time buyers wanted to talk about how difficult the entire experience was, which highlighted the need for a more transparent and seamless first-time buying process.
Buying your first home is one of life’s biggest moments. It’s comparable to getting married or having your first child. It’s a defining moment in many people’s personal and financial lives. But sadly, according to a Which? survey, it’s also considered the second most stressful thing you’ll do in your life. Alex, Kettel’s Co-founder and CTO, and I attempted to buy our first properties multiple times and even despite being part of the industry, found the processes archaic and lacking transparency. A combination of personal experience and connecting with renters who want to own made it clear to us that there could be a better way.
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How has the company evolved during the pandemic?
Born out of the pandemic in October 2020, we recognised that people planning on buying their first home in 2020 were faced with added financial and logistical barriers due to the turbulence of COVID-19.
With digital transformation accelerated during the pandemic, we saw that the traditional laggard real estate industry was starting to recognise the benefits of adopting technology. Service providers are now recognising that in order to differentiate themselves, they need to provide a better customer experience too.
Kettel is continually evolving. We wanted to develop a product that could cater to the needs of first-time buyers and our all-in-one platform has enabled us to be agile and adaptable during the pandemic, ensuring that customers receive hands-on end-to-end support.
What can we hope to see from Kettel in the future?
Our main goal for the future is to fast-track the buying process. We aim to support the home buying processes so that consumers can go from buying a house in 20 weeks, to buying a house in a few minutes. In line with this, we are developing smart technology to personalise our customer experience and tools to match each buyer up with the right home and financing product based on their current circumstances and future needs.
As we continue to digitise all the information in, around and about our homes, we’ll believe that first-time buyers of the future will feel more empowered and in control when buying their first home.