A new search engine site specializes in apartments for rent.
Launched late last year, RentJungle.com pushes traffic to sites with rental listings available online, according to Jon Pastor, its president. Based in Pittsburgh, Pastor said he and Cleveland-based REALTOR® Rick Ferris started Rent Jungle to serve an area that was underserved by search engines like Google.
Rent Jungle works much like other search engines in that it scours the Internet to amass apartment listings from a variety of sites. It employs spidering technology that can detect both when new rentals come on the market and when rents for a particular property change.
REALTORS® who work with rentals can send a feed to Rent Jungle to get the information in the system immediately. Agents can also pay to have their listing appear on the first page.
“Because of the way we collect data, we have an interesting historical prospective on rental properties listed online,” Pastor explained. “We can provide information about what the average rental price is in an area so you can compare what’s available in a neighborhood.”
Over the last six months, Rent Jungle has noted the average rent for an apartment in Pittsburgh has remained flat. Philadelphia average rents have decreased by $59 to an average of $1,089 per month, a decrease of ~5 percent, according to Rent Jungle. Nationwide, average apartment rents decreased by four percent over the same period.
“Despite these decreases, we are seeing some encouraging signs in the rental market,” Pastor said. “Looking at just January this year, rent nationwide is up one percent over December, which is a reversal in the overall six-month trend. Pittsburgh had had a relatively strong rental market through the downturn, whereas Philadelphia tends to mirror New York City.”
Rent Jungle is offering a three-month free trial to list properties to test its services.