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I recently completed a review of a service called ParkAtMyHouse, which helps people in the U.K. find parking spaces and also lets people rent out or "let" their spots to make money and help others. I think it really is a great idea and could have excellent potential to help people with one of the most stressful parts of life; that is the commute. To find out more I chatted with founder Anthony Eskinazi. Our chat transcript is below.
Allen: Can you provide a brief background about yourself?
Allen: Where did the idea for ParkAtMyHouse come from and how does the service work?
Anthony: I was in San Francisco, going to a Giants game (the one where Barry Bonds broke Babe Ruth's record!). My friend was driving and I noticed loads of unutilized space in peoples driveways and thought… Wouldn't it be much easier to park there, pay them a bit of money and stop stressing about circling the block 30 times.
Allen: Can you share some information about your users? Any good stories so far? Maybe a romance?
Anthony: No romance so far, but one user let out his space for £5,500 and then sent the buyer a Christmas card!
Allen: What's the team and environment like at ParkAtMyHouse?
Anthony: At the moment there are just two of us but we are looking to take people on soon. Katie and I have been friends for around 7 years.
Allen: How do you monetize ParkAtMyHouse?
Anthony: We have a commission system and we also have some subtle Google Ads to keep things ticking along…
Allen: Any plans to expand the service to the U.S. or other countries in Europe?
Anthony: Eventually… you'll have to be patient for the moment. We are currently trying to make it work here first and then we'll be looking to expand.
Allen: What's next for ParkAtMyHouse?
Anthony: That would be telling, keep checking back to see new and exciting features!
Allen: What has been the biggest lesson learned since starting ParkAtMyHouse?
Anthony: I can't believe how many people feel the same way we do about parking. Make sure you offer something different, be friendly, warm, inviting. Make your site something people can enjoy and allow them to find relevant information as quickly as possible.
Allen: What are the top 1-2 things you have learned since starting ParkAtMyHouse?
Anthony: No advice is pointless. Everyone's opinion should be acknowledged and thought about. After all, everybody is a potential customer.
Allen: What are the most important things that a startup must have to be successful?
Anthony: Initially a Unique selling point, but ultimately, ease of use, brand recognition and a motivated and ambitious team behind it.
Allen: Which Web apps besides ParkAtMyHouse do you believe is a star?
Anthony: Good question. I visit over 100 different pages a day normally, however none of them are 'Web Apps'. Out of all the ones I've come across recently, NetVibes and Facebook are the two I use most often.
Parkatmyhouse.com launched in late 2006 and is a great way to save money on your parking needs in the UK. I like this service because it offers you the ability to use online to help you offline. The idea is pretty simple. You might either have a car park space you would like to rent out or you need a car park space. Their search engine works on location keywords or post codes. So why not earn a few extra pounds a month by renting out the space in your driveway while you are away at work?
I think this service could work in other major cities in the U.S. as well. Check out my video review of Parkatmyhouse.com below.