Houston #11 - [Bonus Issue] At work I wish I could choose my own perks? Is splitting bills tedious?

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[Sorry if you received this issue twice. We had some technical issues! 🙃 We added a sixth problem to this issue to make up for that]

Hi there 👋 This is Houston's eleventh issue and here are the five interesting problems that we found this week:

Getting access to cash as a college student is too inconvenient

I am a senior at a pretty good college, and I have a full-time offer to work at a big tech company (think Facebook, Google, Apple, etc.) this fall but I still find it ridiculous that I am broke until I start working in September. Like I know that I will have the money but right now I can’t pay for my graduation stuff and I can’t go on a trip with my friends. Putting it on a credit card just seems irresponsible. Are there any better options out there?

Comparing compensation packages between public companies and startups is too tedious

I was lucky enough to receive two offer letters to join two companies after graduation. One was for a pretty cool startup and the other one is a big public company — both in tech. I had a hard time comparing both offers and ended up going with the big tech company because I felt I understood the compensation package better. For the public company, I can see how much the stock is worth, but for the private company, I don’t know what my options will be worth and how things will pan out if the company has a small, medium or large exit.

Buying a car is still the worst commerce experience of all time 🤬

The title says it all. The main problem seem to be how manual the process is (you need individually call dealerships, ask for quotes, compare prices, etc.) and how inconsistent the experience appears due to the availability of cars across basic characteristics like model, years, color, etc. via Alex Taussig

I wish the startup I work at allowed me to choose my own perks

A lot of the office perks I get at work are kind of useless. I wish that I could choose my own perks like free Spotify and Netflix rather than some obscure “wellness benefit” that I have to remember to expense to get a reimbursement.

Splitting bills with roommates is frustrating especially with all of these subscriptions

I started living with two roommates and splitting utility bills and other recurring payments has been a massive pain because one person has to front the money and then nag the others to get paid back. I wish there were one service that we can all log into and pay independently so that I don't have to chase people down.

[Bonus] Is anyone building easy / mobile-first expense, tax, bookkeeping, business management tools for gig workers?

“Uber driver yesterday showed me a huge pile of receipts he needs to deal with for his taxes. Is anyone building easy / mobile-first expense, tax, bookkeeping, business management tools for gig workers? Like... expensify for 1099s” via Fareed Mosavat


Quick Community Updates:

  1. We got some great feedback for Houston+ so we will keep it going! We also went ahead and release Houston+ for all the previous issues of Houston so if you wanted any more info on any of those problems you now have access

  2. As reminder Houston+ is a weekly addition to Houston where we go more in-depth into the market opportunity, current solutions, and potential challenges of every problem we publish on Houston. It's $5/month and the best way to support this project(:

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