So here we are with our first post on our brand new website, the Renters Guide.
At the time of writing this site is still in development. But we thought we would write the odd post during this period, just to record the development of the site and what we did.
How it started
Harriet and I first discussed the idea of a site for tenants in the summer of 2020. We wanted to do something that was essentially free – so hard up tenants could afford to use it, but which would also give us at least a minimal income so we could afford to keep it going.
We wanted something different from the current tenant sites (for example the excellent Shelter site) and eventually came up with the idea of a site based on answering questions.
Answering your questions
Because most tenants don’t want to know what the law is generally relating to, say, deposits – they want to know what the answer is to THEIR problem! For example how to find out if their deposit is protected and what they should do if it is not.
So the free part of the site consists of (or will consist of when we have done them) hundreds of short pages answering a question which you can find via a big search box.
The answers to the questions will always be free – so if we have your question on the site, it won’t cost you anything to read the answer.
The answers to the questions (we decided) would always be short and snappy. But if people wanted to know more, we would provide a series of articles and guides – some free (if you sign up to our free membership) and others paid for.
Hopefully, the paid-for articles will eventually generate enough income to allow us to keep the site online and cover things like hosting and plugin costs.
And maybe even one day give us an income!
Making it real
So after the planning comes action! We set up a company, The Renters Guide Limited, set up a bank account and put some seed funding in it, and commissioned Gill Bishop to start creating the site.
Gill has worked with Tessa for years and created all Tessa’s Landlord Law websites. It was fun to do a totally different type of site.
The website was created in January since when we have all been working on it. Gill to finish the site (there is still a lot to do) and myself and Harriet writing the content. Which is probably going to take some time!
After all we all have our ‘day jobs’. At the moment we have about half a dozen articles written and about 20 questions (some of which need amending). So quite a way to go.
I’d better get back to it! I’ll report back later …