It’s springtime and, in addition to tulips, baseball, and short sleeves, that means apartment-hunting time for many people. Traditionally, that meant looking through an impenetrable set of tiny little listings in the Sunday paper. But now, just as companies like Zillow, Trulia, and Estately have revolutionized the market for real estate sales, there are now a strong crop of tools that can be used to find apartments using your smartphone, whether iPhone or Android.
And, of course, the old standby Craigslist also has thousands of great places to live; there are a bunch of apps built by third parties that provide a layer of convenience and speed over the basic CL listings.
Below are some of the top-rated apartment-search and Craigslist apps as collected by AppStoreHQ, a Seattle startup that helps users find high-quality, relevant apps for their smartphones.
Apartments.com has brought its vast of available rentals to the iPhone. The simple and feature-rich search experience makes it easy to find the right apartment. Use the GPS feature to search for available apartments nearby.. Call to set up an appointment or browse photos, floorplans and walk though videos. Integrated with Google Maps. Allows you to save properties and searches for reference. Detailed search filters let you focus on what’s important to you.
Search on the go with this free app from Apartment Guide. Primarily focuses on larger properties with many units. Contains photos, floor plans, community information, GPS integration, and driving directions. Flexible search by price, distance, and apartment features. Save your favorite places for comparison as you work through your search.
Search over six million apartments and rental homes anywhere in the US for free. Find the perfect place with the award-winning search tool and mapping capabilities, explore photo galleries, and add your own photos and notes to your favorite properties. Features include: advanced searching by location, bedrooms, baths, price, amenities, and even pet-friendliness; detailed property information including pictures and pricing; sharing on Facebook so you can get feedback from friends.
The list of features goes on and on; pretty much anything you could imagine is possible with this app, including: multi-city search, search results include photos and listing details, bookmarking favorite ads, search opions tailored to each Craigslist category, emailing listings, maps integration, detection of expired postings, and saved searches. Supports all CL cities and states. About the only thing missing are notifications when new. matching listings are posted; if you want those, you can try CraigsPro+ ($0.99 plus in-app purchase for notifications).
This is a simpler client than CraigsPro, but still extremely functional. Gizmodo called it “impressively full-featured” and it was an iTunes “Staff Favorite.” It loacks the depth of category-specific search features, but focuses on simplicity, a usable mobile UI, one-click phone numbers, and nearby postings.
Get anytime/anywhere access to ALL of Rent.com’s millions of apartment and home rentals nationwide. View property details, photos, floor plans, maps & more. Call properties with the touch of a button. Stay organized with notes & photos. Claim your $100 Visa reward card.
Take your housing search on the road with HotPads map based housing search. Use GPS location or address. Search apartments, rental houses, real estate, vacation rentals, and hotels. Detailed listings with photos. Driving directions. Save searches and keep track of properties that you’ve already viewed.
Very similar to the iPhone version listed above. Quick, free access to the same huge listings database. Strong search and filtering capabilities. Results show listing details and pictures on the front pages making it easy to know whether or not your need to look more closely at a specific property.
Whether you’re looking to find homes, apartments, condos, townhouses, or other properties to rent, this is a great place to start. Unlike most of the other options, Rentals covers more than just apartments, which gives you a lot more options if you are looking for something more distinct.
Craigslist is a great source for some very cool apartments, townhouses, and houses for rent; the problem is, they’re surrounded by stuff you’re not interested in and they tend to appear and disappear very quickly. This app focuses on, you guessed it, sending notifications when listings matching your saved searches are uploaded to Craigslist. You can also create templates to respond to matching ads. It supports multiple region search and notification, as well as filters for notifications so you don’t get overwhelmed.
– Scott Blanksteen, AppStoreHQ, @sib1013