Landlordology & Cozy – A Dream Team to Revolutionize Renting

Written on January 15, 2014 by , updated on October 15, 2017


A year ago, I set out to create the best free landlording resource on the planet.

Armed with only my personal landlording experience, background in website design, and love for process improvement, emerged.

Over the last year, I’ve written, created, or researched dozens of educational articles, useful tips, resources, and state laws.

I did so while asking for nothing in return.

Rental Laws,

Rental Laws,

My overarching goal was simply to help raise the quality of landlord throughout the US, even if just a little.

Quite frankly, I was tired of seeing landlords struggle through the rental process, and I wanted to help.  I believe that as landlords, we will all succeed if we stick together.

As such, 2013 was a blast and I made a lot of friends in the rental industry, many of whom are also trying to improve a very ancient and relatively unchanged rental process.

An Unexpected Journey

In my adventures, I came across a company called Cozy (@CozyCo).  At their core, Cozy is a financial services company that is simplifying the landlord-tenant relationship in a variety of unique and profound ways.


A Renter Profile

Cozy is different

In addition to being a fantastic and elegant tool for landlords to collect rent and screen tenants, it has revolutionary features for tenants.

One of the most notable differentiators is that Cozy gives the tenant control over who is allowed to view a credit report, without actually giving away a Social Security number – which is the basis for most cases of digital identity theft.

Two birds of a feather, flock together

After a random phone call from CEO Gino Zahnd, I quickly realized that Cozy and Landlordology were trying accomplish the same goal.

While I set out to educate landlords and tenants, Cozy was developing the tangible tools and software needed to help small asset landlords implement the very same best practices that I was preaching.

On January 7, 2014, Cozy announced the acquisition of Landlordology.  It’s official. Cozy and Landlordology are one, forevermore.  Together, we will continue to support small landlords and property managers in successfully managing their rental properties, building wealth, and keeping their tenants happy.

Passion AND Employment


Cozy's Office

Cozy’s Portland Office

I was asked to join Team Cozy full-time as the Community Manager and Chief Landlordologist, whose main purpose is to continue pouring into the landlord-tenant community, and to take landlord education to the next level.

Last week, I flew from D.C. to Portland to spend 14 days emerged into the vision, culture, and personality of Team Cozy.  It’s been amazing.

A fun and talented group

For those who follow Cozy’s twitter account, you already know that it’s a fun bunch.  Gino and John have worked hard to hire the absolute best people to help change the rental landscape.

As an added bonus, everyone seems to truly care about the rental industry. After all, everyone has been either a landlord or tenant before.


Ben Diggles, Head of Growth and Marketing

Not only is Team Cozy some of the most talented developers and designers I’ve ever met, but they go out of their way to treat each other like family, which included one of the funniest white elephant holiday parties that I’ve ever attended.

In the office, they post past-time photos of each other, and host competitions on twitter to name conference rooms after Pop Divas from the 70’s and 80’s.   By the way, the winners were Tina Turner, Cyndi Lauper, and  Joan Jett, and no, Cyndi’s walls aren’t pink.

Here’s to 2014!

To my new family at Cozy, here’s to the future!

  • We’re going to simplify the lives of landlords and tenants alike.
  • We are going to encourage landlords to run a better, more streamlined, profitable, and transparent business.
  • We are going to revolutionize the way renters apply for properties,
  • and we’re going to have fun doing it!

2014 is going to be one heck of ride!

About Cozy

cozy-fire-orangeCozy makes renting easy for both landlords and renters. With elegant products for rent payments, rental applications and tenant screening, Cozy is the best way for small landlords and renters to get things done.

Founded in March 2012 and based in Portland and San Francisco, Cozy’s mission is to radically change the rental real estate experience with a focus on beautifully designed products, transparency, privacy, and total control of one’s personal information.

Cozy is backed by General Catalyst Partners,  The Social+Capital Partnership, Google Ventures, and noted angel investors Tim Ferriss, Jason Calacanis, and Gary Vaynerchuck. Our founders are former lead designers and engineers from Flickr, Kosmix (now @Walmartlabs), Splunk, and Capital One.

Press Coverage

If you are interested in reading more about Cozy’s acquisition of Landlordology, check out these articles:

photo credit: Brandon Christopher Warren via cc
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17 CommentsLeave a Comment

  • Mr. Diggles

    Well said!

    It will be fun in a year to come back to this post. I am thrilled to be a part of a team of heroes. Onward!

  • Jerred Morris

    Congrats Lucas! I’ve never heard of or used Cozy before but I’ll take a look this weekend and see if it makes sense to incorporate into our business.

    • Lucas Hall

      Thanks Jerred. I’ve seen a lot of products like Cozy, but it’s the only one that I would let my non-technical family members use. Now that I’m behind the scenes at Cozy, I can honestly tell you that the new features they are launching are going to change the way tenants and landlords go through the application process.

      There’s a 60-day free trial – no credit card required. Give it a test-run with your next lease turnover. I’m moving all my properties over as the existing leases end.

  • Josh Wardini

    Hey Lucas,
    So glad to have your expertise and Cozy as a tool. Thank you for all your email support and answering my questions. Can’t believe they are located right here in Portland! Gonna stop in and talk with them about open positions.

  • John Bragg

    Hi Josh!
    We’d love to know more about what you’re interested in and what you’re looking to do with Cozy – would it be possible to get you to send us an email at so we can get started talking with you about it?

    Thanks for your interest in us, and thanks so much for supporting Lucas and his efforts!

    CTO & Cofounder – Cozy

  • Jerred Morris - I Buy Houses


    I reviewed the Cozy website and I’m pretty impressed. It would be great if I could jump on a call with you and talk about the features and benefits. If that doesn’t work can you put me in touch with someone from cozy?

    Thanks again for the heads up on Cozy!

  • Jerred Morris

    Is it a flat $9 per door? Is there a transaction fee to process the rent payment?

    What method of payments does Cozy accept?

    • Lucas Hall

      Hey Jerred,

      Yes, it’s $9 per unit – regardless of the # of tenants in each unit. There are no transaction fees. I love it because I have 2 houses with 5 tenants each. Using other rent software, I was charged monthly and then again for every transfer (10 times a month for those two units).

      Not so with Cozy. And the real beauty of it is that if I have an inactive unit with no tenants for a short period of time, I don’t get charged at all by Cozy. With Cozy, you only pay for what you use. Paid accounts are only units that are accepting rent or applications through Cozy. If I have a vacancy, then I don’t have to pay for that unit while it’s empty.

      Right now, tenants make their recurring rent payments through an automated bank transfer – which is super easy. Planned features involve the ability to pay rent with a credit card. With other systems that I’ve used, I had to create a business entity, and open a business bank account (not just a separate account), in order to apply for the online rent payment feature – which was a surprise after you sign up. With Cozy, small asset landlords don’t need to have a separate entity to accept rent electronically. The essence of easy.

    • Lucas Hall

      P.S. there’s a 60-day free trial – with no credit card needed – so it’s really free.

  • Jerred Morris

    That’s what I thought but then it was to good to be true.

    I’ll start with one property and test it out. I still have the too good to be true mindset right now.

    If it works just like the website states then I’ll migrate all of my rentals to the platform.

    BTW – I have a small group of investors that I work with on a regular basis. Does Cozy have a referral program. It won’t keep me from referring but if a program exists then I want to take advantage of it.


    • Lucas Hall

      Hey Jerred,

      That’s great. It’s pretty self explanatory, but check out the Help section if there’s any confusion with you or the tenant(s) who are signing up:

      The email support is super quick to respond too.

      There’s no referral program currently, but I’ll pass along the feature request.

      Thanks for considering telling your investor group about Cozy. That’s how Cozy has spread so quickly – no one seems shy about telling their friends when they really like something.

  • Kathy

    I have 2 rental properties in New Hampshire. Can I still use this tool?

  • Michael

    I noticed that the tenants are free to pay by credit card, debit card, or bank account. Credit card payments are at risk of chargebacks for several months after the transaction. What is the risk to landlords? Can credit card payments be disallowed by the landlord?

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