Bozeman Business Boom: How a startup housing company tapped into a rising demand

Founder Ashley McCullough (left) and Community Strategist Courtney Fitzpatrick (right) work on their website.

BOZEMAN- With more and more people choosing to move out to “The Last Best Place,” MOBLHOM rental housing company looks to provide short-term places to live for those who need them.

“Through all these years when I moved I kept saying, ‘Somebody needs to like make something that really is geared towards people that are relocating,’” Ashley McCullough, founder of MOBLHOM, said.

McCullough started a new short-term rental housing company after experiencing her own troubles when moving to the fast-growing Gallatin Valley.

“We’d moved here to Bozeman, we were moving into a place that was new, we didn’t build it, but it was being built… we had rented through the end of August, and we figured like even if they’re two weeks late, right? Well we moved in October to our place,” McCullough explained.

A worrisome inconvenience led to the start of MOBLHOM just in time for the booming Bozeman housing market but also the coronavirus pandemic.

“COVID when it first hit, it ruined everybody, all of the reservations got canceled nobody was moving around the country, everybody was staying put so there were a couple months that were a little weird, then once people realized like, ‘Hey I’m not going to go somewhere on a vacation, I’m going to go somewhere and stay for a while,’” McCullough said.

According to McCullough MOBLHOM has doubled in revenue every month since July, and in the month of October alone they saw $50,000 in rental sales thanks to the increase in short-term homes.

“Suddenly people are able to do the whole work-from-home thing and it accelerated that to a level that nobody was expecting even within the next 10 years and because of that a place like Bozeman is just the most desirable,” McCullough added.

MOBLHOM has more than 30 rental homes in the Bozeman area with additional locations in Big Sky, Livingston, Missoula, and have even added rental homes in Boise, Idaho, but are headquartered right in the Gallatin Valley.

“People like to be here in the summer, they like to be here in the winter, right so you already have a number of houses that are designated as rentals that people are able to convert, they’re already furnished, they have utilities on, they’re the kinds of things that people can use for this model,” McCullough said.

As of Nov. 9, 2020, MOBLHOM has over 50 listings and don’t plan on stopping there.

“The plan is to expand and to expand into places that have similar growth but are bigger, the kinds of places that people are moving out of the big cities and moving into with a better quality of life,” McCullough said.

More information on MOBLHOM can be found here.

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