Looking for a new apartment is always exciting — until you realize that there’s loads of competition out there, where people are literally bringing blank checks and rental agreements to showings in hope of becoming the first to submit one. Why make it looking for an apartment so stressful on yourself, though?
For many, there’s nothing more excruciating than the apartment hunt. It’s hard not to feel jaded after touring a studio that’s essentially a closet with a toilet! Or checking out a “quiet” neighborhood that’s home to the world’s most amateur DJ. Thankfully, there are more apartment search resources available to us than ever before as well as roommate pairing sites that can help you buddy up to find the best place possible.
That’s why we’re giving you some of the best apartment hunt sites to try out. Our guide will surely take the pain out of finding for your next place to live. Get into the habit of checking all of these apartment sites during your search. You’ll find the dream spot in no time — without having to fight a crowd just to see it in real life.
Zillow Ranks Best To Find The Place Of Your Dreams
Beloved by prospective homebuyers, Zillow is also one of the best apartment finding sites because it’s so interactive. You’ll be able to draw around the area that you want to search in, giving you complete control over the options that you see. These map based features will enable you to find the perfect rental unit. You can also sign up to receive alerts when a new home becomes available that fits your price range and size requirements.
Zillow offers price estimation called the Zestimate tool. By typing in a neighborhood’s zip code, you’ll be able to find an estimate on the cost of rent (or mortgages) in your chosen area. Use this tool to determine whether the property you’re eyeing is significantly overpriced or being offered for a steal. You and your friends can get lost in the Zestimate tool looking up properties in your price range or looking up your friends and family’s real estate values! The map view makes this one of the best rental websites because it includes updated prices in real time.
There are built in features to help you understand how far away your commute distance is from where you’re interested in renting. Other features help you understand parts of the neighborhood. For instance, you can find out how walkable the area is using Walk Score. There are also easy tools to help you see how elementary, middle and high schools rank using GreatSchools data.
Hotpads To Seek Your New Pad
Hotpads was acquired by Zillow in 2012, so it has a familiar feel when it comes to functionality. Renters can use Hotpads to tailor their search by the basics (such as price range and apartment type), as well as keywords like “pool” or “hardwood.”
One of the best features on Hotpads is a user-friendly map that highlights transit options by letting you toggle a bicycle or transit overlay. You can also type in the address of your workplace or school to see what your commute will be like — which is super helpful for all those people out there going green to help save ol’ Mother Nature.
Apartments.com Is The Best for Spanish Speakers
if you’re looking to find a place in suburbia or in the Big Apple. Apartments.com is a great solution for all American zip codes.
Not sure whether you’re looking to rent an apartment, home or condo — no worries, you can use this site to see what’s available in your desired budget. In 2023, Apartments.com boasts it has over one million properties available for rent!
A unique feature provided by Apartments.com is the “Plan Your Commute” feature. Since the average commute to work is about a half an hour, it allows you to narrow your search to rentals within an acceptable commuting distance!
Other unique features provided by the Apartments.com team is its “Listing of the Future.” This feature simplifies the renting process by supplying the most important information for each and every listing. All listings included specific detailed floorplans and rental availability. This is particularly useful when you are evaluating living in a high rise or property managed by large management companies.
To better understand your new community, every listing comes with walk score. The walk score helps you understand how easy a neighborhood is to navigate on foot. You’ll know if you need to own a car to get around to run your errands.
Attention bilingual speakers: the entire website is available in Spanish if you toggle your preferences when you arrive on the homepage.
Zumper Provides Hyperlocal Approach
Looking for a popular apartment search website that has deep knowledge of local rental markets? Zumper is a great resource for rental market reports and diving deep into the neighborhoods you have your eye on. After typing in your desired zip code, you’ll have access to information like culture spots, weather and rent trends in your neighborhood. If you’re not familiar with the area, you’ll also have access to information on neighborhoods that fit your interests.
Need a bit more help with your search? The Zumper Select feature connects apartment searchers with rental experts that will help you schedule and confirm rental tours. How’s that for being convenient?
RentHop Is The Best for Big Cities
RentHop surfaces apartments in big cities and offers renters its services in several major US cities including: Atlanta; Boston; Chicago; Dallas; Houston; Los Angeles; Miami; Philadelphia; New York; & Washington D.C.. The best feature of the app is by far the filtering as it allows users to dive into the details of neighborhood level searches with many options for price ranges and special add-ons which matter to housing markets in New York such as filtering out Fee based apartments.
These add-ons can help a renter save thousands of dollars when moving as Fee based apartments can be between one or more months rent when signing a lease.
Craigslist Is Still An Option For Rental Classified Ads
Hear me out. Craigslist can be a sketchy place, but, still today, it remains one of the best apartment search sites. Plus, when looking to score a low-cost apartment, this is pretty much the most reliable — especially when on the hunt for a sublet. Ignore the listings for big apartment complexes, instead focusing on homes and apartments being leased out by the owner. If you know which neighborhood you want to live in, use the map feature to zero in on specific properties in your desired area.
Also, remember to always be safe, and never go alone to see an apartment that you find on Craigslist. Always bring a friend along, and make sure you actually tour the place. You should never put a deposit down on a rental that you have never personally seen. This is an easy way to get scammed. Another tip? If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is.
Lead image via Getty