MiCasa — an app for tenants – UX Planet
I began brainstorming various solutions for the above focus areas.
To save time and money spent during the move-in process.
- Provide a 24 hours link for taking orientation online.
- A choice to select from videos or written documents for online orientations.
- Questionnaires at the end of each online session.
- Provide keys the very next day a tenant finishes with online orientations.
- Calendar view with available dates for in-person orientations.
- Rescheduling option in for in-person orientation.
- Suggest users move to online orientations by explaining their benefits while the tenant is waiting for the in-person orientation sessions.
- Reimbursements of the travel charges in terms of points that can be used to pay the monthly rent.
- Provide customer care number on the waiting screen for in-person orientations.
To save time and money spent during the payment process.
To allow multiple payment options for the monthly rent.
- Provide a payment portal through an app or from the rental office’s website.
- Allow payment through third-party companies like Google Pay, Apple Pay, Zelle, etc.
- Provide payment reminders.
- Provide a grace period based on payment history.
- Facility for a one-time payment for some months.
- Recurring payment options.
To avoid visiting management office to raise maintenance requests
To provide the best quality services at cheap prices to the customer
- Online maintenance requests through a mobile application
- Let management do the negotiation to ensure better quality and cheaper rates.
- Default categories of maintenance to be addressed quickly like plumbing, electricals, carpentry, lawn-moving, etc.
- Let tenants schedule the maintenance activity according to their availability.
- Explicitly provide ETAs for the requests.
- Address requests with respect to the priority of work.
- Option to increase the priority of the activity.
To design an easy process to raise guest pass request.
To avoid visiting security office every time a guest arrives
- Raise guest pass requests via an app.
- Upload ID proof to verify the guest.
- Provide QR code to the tenant as well as guests to scan the same at the security office before entry.
- Allow preparation of the guest list.
- Option to modify and delete guest passes.
- Maintenance agents guest pass to be directly reflected in the main area of the app.
With all these ideas in mind, my immediate goal was to design an app as quickly as possible. Thus, some of the above ideas were parked for future releases and my main focus turned to design a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) which could provide online support for the above areas. I designed low fidelity paper prototypes for the chosen ideas and tested with the potential users.
With the feedback received from the users, I began structuring the Information Architecture of the application. All the components on the screens were grouped and arranged in a hierarchical order of their presence. Two new areas were added based on the feedbacks — Emergency services and tenants communication platform (included in home screen).
Screen flow diagrams were designed as a next step to the UX Design process. Wireframes of all the screens were designed and were carefully linked with others based on the flows identified to perform a particular task. The screen flow diagram for payments section is shown below:
It was time to craft a visually pleasing experience for the tenants in the form of a mobile app which could effortlessly solve their daily problems. I used the Material Design System to design the application. It gave me concrete guidelines to follow and at the same time motivated me to be creative by providing various Material case studies.
Lato was selected as a universal typeface of the application to provide uniformity and consistency in the UI components across the application.
The colors used in the application were inspired by the colors of the interiors of modern homes. The turquoise of the furniture provided freshness, the hint of Red from the furniture stood out bold while the faded yellow of the walls provided a warm and welcoming look to the application.
The illustrations were designed in line with the colors used in the application.
While most of the icons were used from Material Design Icons, I created some of the icons by following the guidelines provided by Material Design.
The final design of the prototype was build in Axure RP 9. The link to the prototype is mentioned below.
Link: Mi Casa App
With the help of MiCasa, I was able to provide online support (with the help of an app) to some of the major problems faced by the tenants. The features of the application, even though basic, were able to reduce the time required by the tenants to perform the tasks. In the future, I would like to create another version of the application accommodating the ideas which were parked during the ideation phase and solutions to other problems of the tenants.