How To Find a Rented Apartment

How To Find a Rented Apartment

Many who have ever looked for rental housing would prefer to forget this experience as a bad dream. Finding a rented apartment is a kind of lottery. You can quickly find suitable housing, or you can literally spend months sorting through offers, but still not find “your” apartment. We have already written about search parameters; we have created a whole guide describing the most significant criteria for searching for rental housing. And today we’ll dwell on the question – where and how to find an apartment?

Information sources:

Online message boards

Zillow, Trulia, Movoto Real Estate – these are the most popular platforms. All of them offer their own mobile applications, more or less convenient filters and a database of thousands of advertisements from both homeowners and agents. The downside is that ads are almost not moderated. You will have to check the correspondence of the pictures and descriptions in the ad with reality, as well as the integrity of the landlord yourself.

Realtors and real estate agencies

If you don’t want to do the search yourself, you can delegate this work to an agent. Don’t expect exceptional offers, “own ad database” is nothing more than an advertising gimmick. For a fee ranging from 20 to 100% of the monthly rental cost, the realtor will conduct an initial selection of advertisements, call landlords and arrange viewings of apartments, and will also act as an intermediary in negotiations on the cost and terms of rent. 

Promises of legal support for a transaction should also be taken critically – often it comes down to filling out a lease agreement template. However, if you value your time very much, this may be the best option. We recommend choosing a trusted agency with a good reputation, describing the housing search criteria as clearly as possible to the realtor, and insisting on legal verification of the documentation.

Specialized services

Combines the functionality of a bulletin board and a real estate agency. For example, The Locals project. For a certain fixed amount you get access to a database of advertisements from the owners, and in addition – a personal assistant, insurance and legal support of the transaction. Such a service can be a successful alternative to both searching on your own (ads are collected from all popular sites and are necessarily moderated) and contacting a realtor (even the most expensive tariff will most likely turn out to be cheaper than the agency’s commission).

Social media

Don’t neglect this affordable tool! Firstly, you can post a post about your search for an apartment on your social media pages. Among your friends and acquaintances there may be a potential landlord. Secondly, visit specialized communities where users post advertisements for searching or renting housing. Some of the most popular are “Flats for friends” on Facebook and “Instagram”. In such groups, people share their experiences, discuss how to avoid scammers, look for neighbors and simply like-minded people. 

Of course, you can find a variety of advertisements there and there is no such convenient navigation system. But there are also advantages. There is less chance of stumbling upon scammers or simply unscrupulous tenants – after all, based on their profile on a social network, you can form an impression about a person in advance. There are exclusive advertisements that you will not find on other sites. And, of course, live communication with community members.

Friends, colleagues, acquaintances

Modern life is concentrated on the Internet – that’s where we turn first on almost any issue. However, sometimes it’s worth going offline. Mention the search for housing in the company of friends, visiting relatives, during a traditional conversation over morning coffee with colleagues, when meeting neighbors. You don’t keep in touch with everyone on social networks, and live communication will help expand your search opportunities.

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Forums and chats

Are you looking for an apartment in a specific residential complex or building? Then it makes sense to contact the homeowners directly. The easiest way to do this is on forums or in “neighborhood” chats – almost all new buildings have them.

Telegram bots

For example, Zillow or Movoto Real Estate_flat_bot will monitor all popular sites with advertisements for housing for rent. Some bots can identify duplicate advertisements, select the most advantageous offers, and filter apartments not only by specified characteristics in the description, but also by photos (they will not show apartments with “grandmother’s” renovations). You will have a link to the ad within literally a couple of minutes after publication – convenient and quick. True, all the subsequent troubles – calling, making an agreement, viewing the apartment, discussing the conditions – will still have to be taken upon yourself.

So, as you can see, there are quite a few options for finding rental housing – from conservative to modern. In any case, we wish you happy hunting! And when the time comes to move, we will be happy to help. After all, moving to a new home certainly shouldn’t take extra effort and time.