Not paying enough rent? New startup Rentberry could change that

Start up to rent it

Grist

As if life for renters in big cities weren’t hellish enough, a new Bay Area startup promises to make it even more of a nightmare. Meet Rentberry.

The company, which launched Tuesday, is an auction site for rental properties brought to you by a team of pale people. Assuming this isn’t a scam or an elaborate Yes Men–style prank to draw attention to the soaring cost of housing, here’s how it’s supposed to work: Property owners list their units on the site, and then potential tenants compete to outbid each other for the privilege of having a place to live. Sounds great, right?

No, it sounds awful. The median rent for a one-bedroom in San Francisco is already a mind-blowing $3,560 a month, and Rentberry promises to make it go even higher. As of now, Rentberry only directly charges tenants — they must pay $25 at the time of lease signing — but the company intends to…

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