One side effect of a busier rental market: lots of new apartment search tools for renters. Last month we checked out InsideDigs, and now there's a new rental search engine in town: SeriousRenters. The site, which launched last week, earned a Crain's profile today, and we were thereby inspired to take it for a spin.
Renters can use the site to create a "resume," or a wishlist of preferred apartment locations, number of occupants, types of apartments, building amenities, and maximum rent. Renters can share the wishlist with friends for free, and with a database of 10,000 landlords and brokers for $50-$100. (Landlords and brokers can pay to search for information on multiple renters.) There's no list of apartments to search.
The lack of searchable listings strikes us as something of a downside, even if there are other sites that will give renters a general sense of what's out there in a particular neighborhood and price range. Another potential issue: the fact that renters might pay a fee to connect with a broker who might then charge them another fee. On the plus side, though, creating a specific wishlist and inviting friends and brokers to respond could save renters much time and angst?assuming landlords and brokers respond only with what renters are asking for.
· Official website: SeriousRenters [seriousrenters.com]
· Two new websites offer hand to apt. seekers [Crain's]
· Launches & Releases coverage [Curbed]