Casalova is Canada’s first real estate rental app that allows you to search, book and pay for rentals all online.

Ray Taaeb and Curtis Layne co-founded Casalova in May 2015. The impetus for this development was the ubiquitously challenging rental process here in Toronto, for both landlords and tenants. In 2017, most services are digitized — Uber, food delivery, online payment applications, to name a few. Taaeb and Layne address the pain of renting by streamlining the rental process through a digital application. Casalova is removing the arduous task of researching, applying and traipsing around the city trying to find a rental fitting to one’s needs by allowing users to complete a simplified version of this process on their phones. Since their launch, Casalova has gained more than 250,00 users across Canada. They are incubated at Zone Learning’s DMZ.

Born in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and raised across Canada, Ray Taaeb had a transient childhood. Having had moved often in his life, in a Canadian Business article, Taaeb shared that he’d always been interested in real estate, to the extent that he pursued work with a Toronto real estate practice. However, when it came to finding his own rental in 2013, researching buy-and-sell websites like Kijiji or, completing tedious paperwork, scanning documents and going to meet-and-greets with landlords became a full-time project. The sentiments Taaeb experienced led him to the realization that our current rental system has become antiquated in a digital age, and he set out to create a positive solution for society.

Taaeb soon after met Curtis Layne, a software engineer keen on the unique solution Taaeb was looking for. Together they created Casalova, an application that breaks down the steps involved in finding rentals, or sharing rentals online. As stated on the DMZ’s website, the Casalova user is “using today’s technology to find and book a unit with a few simple clicks. Tenants and landlords no longer have to endure a renting process that is outdated, unsafe and inconvenient. Furthermore, Casalova’s rent income guarantee protects landlords from delinquent tenants and removes the risk of renting out your property.”  Improving the process on both ends of a rental transaction is a much needed outcome for all parties involved in city renting.

More on rent guarantee through Casalova:

Do you have a well-researched prototype that is generating demand, but you need to scale and further develop your start-up? If yes then checkout The DMZ at Ryerson University, Zone Learning.