A new rental marketplace app has launched in Dubai to help residents save on general living expenses via the sharing economy.
The app, Tnerit, founded by Emirati brothers Ali and Hussain Al Abbas, allows users to lend and borrow personal and household items from one another on a daily or monthly basis – earning money and saving in the process.
A spokesperson for the company said users can either borrow items they need or “profit from lending” out their own possessions to the community.
“We live in a time when individuals want to own and experience products that exceed what they can afford,” the spokesperson said, adding that the app's launch is privately funded. “We want Tnerit to be the go-to app used throughout Dubai by people who wish to earn and save.”
The company hopes to strike a chord with residents at a time when many are struggling with the rising cost of living due to higher prices and job uncertainty. According to the quarterly Consumer Confidence Tracker from comparison site yallacompare released last month, almost half of UAE residents are now feeling less confident about their financial health than they were this time last year.
This means residents are looking for any way to save and cut back on their monthly expenditure – something the app founders are hoping to capitalise on.
By sharing possessions, residents can live more sustainable lives and save money as they will not have to pay the full purchase price for items they may only need to use once or twice.
Log onto Tnerit - rent spelt backwards - and listings include a Maxi Cosi car seat available for Dh10 per day, a Jawbone speaker for Dh12 a day or the book Economics: A User's Guide by Ha-Joon Chang for Dh7 per day.
Categories of rental items currently available include electronics, home, garden and DIY items, as well as toys, games, party supplies, sports and fitness, clothes, books and musical instruments. However, the app, which only went live two weeks ago, appears in the early stages of development with only a few listings currently available and some sections of the app listed as "upcoming".
The company also hopes to encourage “an entrepreneurial spark” among its users, who could potentially boost their monthly incomes by renting out personal possessions.
Dubai resident Emma White, a personal trainer and founder of group exercise and Pilates company bactive.me, said the concept has huge potential both for her business and her personal life.
"In the summer months, I install a home gym in my house so I could rent out my dining table to help clear space," she said. "I could also rent out equipment to offer different types of classes or rent out my sand bags or kettle bells for a set period to generate extra income."
Ms White said that when guests come to stay, residents like her could rent an extra bed, garden chairs or bikes for the duration of their stay.
The company hopes residents will soon be sharing items such as children’s Halloween costumes, power drills, barbecues and garden furniture.
The app, currently only available to Dubai users, will be offered to Abu Dhabi and Sharjah residents next year. It can be downloaded for free from the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.