Castle is a software that enables landlords to outsource property management, including tenant screening, rent collection, maintenance and inspection coordination, and tenant inquiries.
Tim Dingman, Castle
About Tim Dingman
With an engineering background and a passion for real estate, Tim Dingman co-founded Castle, a full-service property management platform. Tim was a fellow in the inaugural class of Venture for America, an organization that places graduates at startups in economically redeveloping cities. During his two-year VFA tenure, Tim founded Rebirth Realty to purchase and restore an abandoned Detroit home.
Does Castle have any favorite tools?
We really like Firebase, a cloud-based service that offers real-time backend services for apps. It's very simple to set up--you don't have to worry about maintaining a database--and it also it has a web-based graphical user interface. You can look at your database and manipulate the data right from the browser, which is extremely handy.
Do you have advice for other entrepreneurs?
Your team is the most important factor in your success, especially early on. It's far better to have an excellent team and a mediocre idea than a mediocre team and the best idea ever. If you feel any doubt about someone early on, they have to go. The weight of babysitting them and the constant, nagging doubts in the back of your mind are huge.
How much of a factor was cost when you were shopping for tools?
It's hard to quantify, but in my head it's more important to focus on software that impacts our product. For us, that's backend services and CRM. It's more important to have great services in that area and just use email if you can't afford Slack, for instance.