Not everyone can afford to buy a home and not everyone wants to buy a home. If you’re not going to be living in the city you currently call home forever, then you probably want to rent rather than spend money on a house.
But where do you start? There are dozens of great places to rent online but there are also hundreds of sites with bad reputations. We’ve curated all of the very best websites for rentals and you will surely find your perfect non-forever home on one of them!
18 best websites for rentals that offer a wide variety of tools
1. Facebook Groups
Most people get on Facebook and immediately go to Facebook Marketplace. This is great for standard, everyday items. But when it comes to things like houses and pets, you’ll want to branch out a little on Facebook.
That’s why you join groups on Facebook. Look for groups that are in your area selling houses, renting apartments, and so on. Just go to the search bar and type in your city. Just be careful when using groups because there are no guarantees.
Zillow is the number one best website for rentals in the United States. Every new homeowner and renter has visited Zillow in search of a new place and most of them have had success. Most homes are listed on Zillow.
Zillow makes it easy for real estate agents and landlords alike, so both sides can use Zillow and refer prospective buyers. Their app is also a winner and is available on both iPhone and Android, downloading it as a great place to start.
Since 2014, Trulia has been owned by Zillow, so many of the places you’ll see on Trulia will be on Zillow as well. They have dozens of guides to assist you in renting or buying a home, so even if you don’t rent from there, you can use their resources.
One unique thing about Trulia is that it has maps that let you know the crime rate in the neighborhood you’re interested in. They even have a special tool for those in the LGBTQ+ community that allows them to find the safest places for them!
4. Air BnB
Most people think Air BnB is for vacations only, but some people actually list their place on Air BnB when they are looking for long-term renters. You can sort by the type of abode you’re looking for and you won’t find a more unique rental than on Air BnB.
If you are looking for short term renting, Air BnB is your best bet as they don’t have a contract locking you into paying for months worth of rent. Most places charge per night and you’d be surprised at the low cost you can find.
5. Street Easy
While most rental websites can be useful for people all over the United States, Street Easy is made specifically for New York City, the most populated city in the country. So of course the city has its own rental site.
When using other sites it can get overwhelming. But on Street Easy, you can search by neighborhood so you always know what you’re getting. New Yorkers love Street Easy as it encompasses New Jersey, Staten Island, and more.
Rentals doesn’t list houses for sale, only those for rent. So if you’re tired of scrolling through houses that are only for sale, then Rentals may be a great place to get away from that. The site is simple and easy-to-use.
Rentals offers multiple services and sources for renters. You can hire movers, and check for internet and other services as the company has partnered with TV and internet providers to make sure you get the best they have to offer.
Not many people have heard of Zumper, as most people opt for the more popular sites like Zillow or Realtor. But Zumper is not to be thrown by the wayside as it is still a reputable and legit website for rentals.
Zumper has been recommended by renters who don’t live in the area they are going to rent in. Because Zumper offers info about each neighborhood you look for rentals in, letting you know what is best for you.
You shouldn’t knock Craigslist before you try it. Hundreds of landlords put their listings on Craigslist every day. You can sort by price, number of bedrooms, and even by amenities. So you can weed out unwanted results.
You can also checkmark things like cat-friendly and wheelchair access. That way, you don’t have to call every landlord to find out if the home will work for your family or not. This makes shopping much faster and more efficient.
Realtor is another popular site that millions of renters and buyers use every year. They have everything from news to mortgage calculators. A lot of people use Realtor for the tools they offer rather than looking for a rental.
Realtor is also great for sellers and landlords as they have calculators that will let you know how much your home is worth and keep info regarding it. The site has been around since 1995, making it one of the oldest sites for rentals.
10. Rent Cafe
Rent Cafe is a fan favorite because of its real-time interactions. The site is updated multiple times a day so you always know which properties are available and which ones aren’t, saving you valuable time.
You also don’t have to worry about inauthentic landlords or getting scammed because Rent Cafe only allows reputable property managers who are screened before listing their apartments. Another time-saver that lets you rest easy.
11. Pad Mapper
People on Pad Mapper don’t upload their listings directly to the site. Rather, the site aggregates and curates listings from other sites, letting you view them all at once. This is something that can be a good thing.
Because it curates listings from other sites, you don’t have to go to each site yourself and view which listings are available. You won’t see doubles on Pad Mapper, which has an interactive map, canceling out duplicates.
Adobo makes it easy to get started looking for a rental. They have dropdown menus that let you want to live near a college campus, the big city, or somewhere else. And that’s just the beginning of their search process.
Adobo is a favorite among college students because of its focus on college campuses. They have hundreds of thousands of apartments listed specifically for college kids. You just have to pick your college and get started!
13. Rent Jungle
Rent Jungle is a lesser-known site for rentals. It looks like your run of the mill rental site. But it does have one key aspect that makes it so appealing, especially to those on a strict budget who aren’t experienced in looking for rentals.
Rent Jungle has a tool that lets you compare rentals before you even contact the property manager. That way, you know you’re getting the best deal and that the manager isn’t overcharging for his apartment.
Hotpads is another site that was acquired by Zillow and is now a sister site of the best rental site in the world. It offers recommended rentals according to where you are located if you give it permission.
Or, you can search by city/zip code. Because it is owned by Zillow, the search process is the same otherwise. This is great because you don’t have to learn a new process if you’ve used Zillow and Trulia before.
When looking for rentals, you’ll probably happen upon Rent. It is a safe site to use with millions of listings. One of their best features, which makes them one of the best websites for rentals, is their filtering tools.
You can search for homes near military bases, homes for seniors, and many more different categories that other sites just haven’t thought of. Rent things of everything and it’s what makes them so special.
At Apartments, you can choose an apartment to look at and be notified of what’s going on in that area. You can find out what schools are there, if anything noteworthy is happening, and any market trends to be aware of.
Like other websites, such as Zillow, Apartments allows you to draw borders on a map, filtering locations. This is a handy tool if you don’t know exactly where you want to live or if you are very specific.
17. Rent Hop
Renthop is a great place to shop for rentals if you are unsure about reptuations, value, etc. Each listing has a special score called a HopScore that rates it according to such things. This makes it easier to trust your choice.
The site lets you search by city or state, much like Craigslist. You can check the availabliity of the listing you’re interested by clicking “Check Availibility” which lets you send a message to the manager.
18. Naked Apartments
Don’t let the name fool you. Naked Apartments takes you, and their business, seriously. You can review brokers and anonymously write reviews so that you won’t have to be afraid of being harassed for leaving a bad one.
The only catch is that Naked Apartments is for New Yorkers only. Yes, another rental site for New Yorkers. But to be fair, getting a rental in New York City is harder than it looks. With a city so grand, you’ll need all the help you can get!