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In our previous post, we talked about how the sharing economy fits perfectly for the Millennial generation. To quickly recap: Millennials grew up during a unique age of technological innovation and rapid changes in the US economy. With substantial amounts of student debt and a job market more competitive than ever, it’s only natural that Millennials view purchases and ownership of luxury goods as unessential commitments. Correspondingly, it seems safe to say that Millennials will continue to drive the sharing economy as our society moves towards decentralization.

Sharing Economy placard with urban background

Why Pay Full Price?

So how did the sharing economy get so huge over just the past couple of years? The logic that drives this collaborative consumption is simple: Why pay for something at full price when you can simply rent it more cheaply from a stranger? It’s no coincidence that so many sharing economy startups were created between 2008 and 2010 in the aftermath of the global financial crisis where many people started shifting away from traditional forms of ownership and overconsumption.

Driving Forces of the Sharing Economy

You may not know it yet, but you may in fact already be a part of the sharing economy in some form or way. Tech giants like Uber and Airbnb are notably the most powerful forces driving this phenomenon. According to a study by eMarketer, a leading market research company, the usage rates of these two sharing economy services are astonishing. This year, approximately 21 percent of US adult internet users, or 44 million people, are expected to have booked at least one Uber ride. Similarly, around 17 percent of internet users, or 37 million people, are expected to have used Airbnb at least once. Airbnb, founded in San Francisco in 2008, has helped over 200M guests find places to stay and currently holds over 3 million listings worldwide in over 65,000 cities. Through this service, people are able to list anything from a spare bedroom to a treehouse out in the woods, earning some much needed income.

Despite this massive use, there are still many folks who are not excited at the idea of opening up their homes to random strangers on the internet. This sentiment is valid and completely understandable. After all, services like Airbnb require us to be perfectly comfortable with sharing our most valuable possessions with people we’ve never met before. Furthermore, these peer-to-peer rental companies have us engaging in social activities and transactions that would have seemed outlandish just a few years ago. Now, there is an undeniable trend where people actually want to get into some stranger’s car and welcome them into their own bedrooms.

Building Trust is Key 

As awareness and trust in the sharing economy grows slowly by slowly amongst individuals, so too will the number of users. Pillow, a short-term rental program used by property managers to facilitate compliant Airbnb rentals in apartment buildings, relies entirely on this aspect of the sharing economy. The Pillow program provides people with a valuable way to create some extra income as well as offer a cheaper alternative to access otherwise expensive homes. It is our goal to encourage property managers and building owners to trust in Pillow and its transparent platform to readily provide all available information about their buildings’ Airbnb activities, and facilitate compliant home-sharing. Only through trust and education will people begin to fully take advantage of the sharing economy and all the benefits it has to offer. And we intend to do just that by showing people the value and positive impact brought about by the home-sharing economy.

Interested in partnering your building with Pillow? Use this link to get your personalized market report and see how much your building can earn!

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