While most of the group buying sites in India focus on small ticket service oriented deals, there is a huge demand for big ticket products ranging from say, cars to life style products to real estate properties.
grtDeal is a Mumbai based startup that brings the concept of group buying to property business (currently active only in Mumbai).
The business model of grtDeal revolves around (qualified) lead generation, though the challenge for such portals becomes the ever increasing cost to bring traffic to their site. Another site, Groffr (which raised funding from IAN) is also in a similar space, though they also offer deals in lifestyle products like LCD too.
As somebody who has bought a flat very recently, my experience tells me that if you have the patience to haggle with builders, you will get a good deal (better than what’s listed on these sites), though the reality is that a lot of customers aren’t so comfortable haggling and would rather prefer an ‘e-way’ to do the same.
In essence, there is a market for these services, but these startups need to really go out and make the entire process of buying transparent (for example, one should be able to talk to others who are also interested in the property/one should be able to exchange notes with others etc). That is, do not be the gatekeeper and instead enable conversation so that it builds long term value.
What’ your experience? If you have bought a flat in the recent times, do share your experience. Would you use a service like this?
If yes, would you use these services to get a benchmark of the market price or for conducting real transaction?