Building an app that connects likeminded students who need a roommate

We designed and built both an iOS and Android app from scratch leveraging React Native and meeting tight launch deadlines.

Defining the user stories that would best support students

Testing and iteration are always part of the process early on, but for this engagement we needed to account for a system that could be scalable as it grew. The team at Den Social had a robust roadmap, integrating complex user profile matching to support students in a variety of verticals, including social events, dating, and roommate finding. We knew we needed a solution that could be both sticky yet flexible, so we wanted to provide multiple options for the client to test and validate to set up the foundation to be as strong as possible.

This initial design testing phase included:

  1. In-app navigation and information architecture
  2. Search functions and user group definition

  3. Dashboard experiences and breakout experiences

We started off by whiteboarding these flows and quickly transitioned to a higher fidelity after getting client buy-in. The client was then able to take these high fidelity design prototypes to test with real users - the students - to produce a clear path forward for the app, both in the near-term and in the longer product strategy.

Whiteboarding enables the team to vet ideas and assumptions, while learning quickly.

Solving the problems that matter

Finding roommates is one of the most important parts of a new college student’s life - it affects their entire school year and sets a precedent for creating friend groups in a new environment. We designed a platform that enabled students to find their perfect roommate quickly and reliably, using specific lifestyle indicators as a baseline for roommate matching.

Through robust research and user testing, we came up with a set of critical filters to organize the potential roommates into. Through a fun and engaging onboarding process, each user’s personality indicators trickle down into filterable tags that mean the most when figuring out who will - and won’t - work.

Profile Building

Create a custom profile reflecting your personality and preferences.


Browse curated profiles and match with potential new roommates.


Start chatting to figure out if the roommate match is right for you.

Developing a style based on key audiences

Developing a style is always fun, but being able to do it for a Gen Z audience that truly holds a high standard for technological experiences makes it a challenge as well. This required us to build a system that puts the spotlight on what matters while also standing out from the crowd. This was achieved through pairing grotesk and monospace typography, employing bright and accessible colors, and integrating the use of emojis throughout the experience.

A note from BL3NDlabs Head of Engineering

With Den, we had the exciting opportunity to work with a team of innovative entrepreneurs in building a cutting edge consumer focused mobile app. We opted to go with a React Native Javascript application to give Den a versatile go-to-market strategy while still providing a premier mobile experience. Some key parts of the mobile experience revolved around optimizing for an image heavy user experience, real time chat and multi tenants. On the backend, one of the key components was a robust API to help capture user meta data for our connection making matching engine.

BL3NDlabs' project management approach was top notch. We eventually implemented many of their principles within our internal design and development processes. BL3NDlabs strived to fully understand the core problems our consumer faced, and produced design that efficiently delivered a solution to their needs.
Charlie Wiggs, Co-Founder & CEO at Den Inc.
Charlie Wiggs
Co-Founder & CEO at Den Inc.



  • A/B Testing
  • Product Strategy


  • User Research
  • Information Architecture
  • Wireframes
  • Brand Identity Direction
  • Product Design
  • Creative Direction
  • Motion Design


  • Technical Strategy
  • Prototyping
  • React Native Development

Get It

We build best-in-class user experiences on solid, scalable tech stacks.

Den Web App