As soon as you do a search on a Search Engine for "apartments" you are going to come across two types of Website resources; apartment locator sites and apartment database sites. Which is the best for you? Well, that depends on what your needs and circumstances dictate. It also has a great deal to do with your privacy comfort level.
The Apartment Locator Site:
In case you are moving to an area of the country that is completely new for you, somewhere where you don’t know much about the neighborhoods, job centers, transportation, schools, etc., then the apartment locator may be your best pick. These folks answer to your question by making telephone contact with you. You will define your conditions, budget, needs, and other preferences. The apartment locator is typically very conversant about the area and the local rental market.
They will be very useful in finding your rental home that fits your specific needs. In many cases, this will be a fully free service. The apartment locator is normally given a commission or “finder’s fee” from the rental agent or landlord. With respect to your privacy, however, remember that you are required to share your telephone number with the apartment locator and be open to the notion of personal contact. You need to decide if, or how much, that is adequate to your sense of privacy.
The Apartment Database Site:
Not like apartment locators, apartment database sites provide a broad selection of online apartment listings. They give you complex descriptions of apartment complexes comprising, though not limited to, amenities, maps, rent ranges, contact information, etc. Images of the apartment units, inside and out, are usually added. An excellent amount of information helps you choose if any specific rental unit meets your satisfaction and needs. When you are relocating to an apartment that is located within your present living area or when you are relocating to an area that you are totally familiar with, an apartment database site might be the one for you. Most require a simple registration process which usually asks for name and email address. You don’t need to submit your telephone number and you will not be contacted personally by anybody. Like the apartment locator, many apartment database sites are free to use. Sometimes you are even offered a bonus of $100.00 or more if you list their site as your referring source when you sign your apartment lease.
Thus, which is preferred by you, the apartment database site or the apartment locator site? The answer to that question is answered by your own unique needs, desires, situation, and limits of personal privacy.
Good luck with your apartment search and good luck in your new apartment.