CHICAGO, Nov. 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The majority of renters consult consumer reviews during their apartment search to help make informed decisions before committing to a lease. In fact, 80 percent of renters said they use reviews during their apartment search process, and more than three quarters described reviews and recommendations as extremely or very helpful when finding a new place to live.1
In response to this need, Apartments.com—the number one renter destination for more than a year—becomes the first major apartment Internet Listing Service (ILS), to launch reviews on its website.2
"Product reviews have become a part of our purchasing behavior and it's not going away," said Chris Brown, vice president of product management at Apartments.com. "Similar to the way we shop for many of our goods, renters want to know where their peers are choosing to live and what they are saying about their experience. As the apartment rentals category leader, we do our best to listen to what renters are telling us and answer those needs with innovative products and technology to simplify the process of finding a place to live."
Whereas renters typically had to leave rental websites to find relevant apartment community reviews in the past, they can now conveniently search from one central location. Both apartment hunters and dwellers can easily read and write reviews directly from the Apartments.com home page or by visiting www.Apartments.com/Reviews. Apartments.com visitors are able to review a wide variety of aspects of individual apartments and communities that choose to offer reviews. In addition to giving an overall rating on the apartment, Apartments.com visitors can drill down into more detail by reviewing apartment location/neighborhood, quality of amenities, noise level, overall value and the leasing office and maintenance staff.
"It's empowering," continued Chris Brown. "Today, consumers feel entitled to unlimited access to information and want to engage with the brands and the services they use. Renters are no exception. They want to be educated, so they can feel confident about their decision. We believe access to reviews from other users and current residents will help reinforce that they've made the right choice based on the wealth of information available on our website."
Unlike other websites with apartment community reviews, property managers, owners and leasing staff are not required to pay to respond. As a result, apartment hunters have a more authentic view of the relationship between the property and interested renters and current residents.
1 The Five Star Community: The Importance of Online Reviews, based on Apartments.com commissioned third-party research with Slack and Company and the Blackstone Group, 2012.
2 These rankings are based on monthly reported numbers by comScore Media Metrix. The apartment rentals category, as custom-defined by Apartments.com, ranks the top 10 websites as Apartments.com, ApartmentGuide.com, Rent.com, ApartmentFinder.com, Rentals.com, ForRent.com , MyNewPlace.com, ApartmentHomeLiving.com, RentalHomesPlus.com, RentalHouses.com.
Apartments.com (http://www.apartments.com) is a leading national apartment Internet listing subscription service with more than 50,000 unique addresses representing millions of rental units from managed properties, newspaper classifieds and for-rent-by-owner properties. By incorporating the most relevant products to reach renters, including personalized searches and highly-visual ads featuring live chat, real-time rent, online video walk-through demonstrations, professional photography, a mobile website and iPhone and Android apps, Apartments.com creates easy access to its listings. Providing unmatched exposure to its advertisers through an intuitive name, strategic search engine placements and featured partnerships and more than 120 newspaper websites and innovative emerging media, Apartments.com reaches millions of renters nationwide, driving both qualified traffic and highly-engaged renters to leasing offices across the country. Apartments.com is a division of Chicago-based Classified Ventures, LLC. The Apartments.com network of apartment rental websites includes Apartment Home Living (http://www.apartmenthomeliving.com), a leading social media apartment website distinguished by a "live for fun" community experience, proprietary lifestyle matching and local living guides to help renters find their perfect place to live; Rental Homes Plus (http://www.rentalhomesplus.com), an online destination where house hunters who prefer to rent can choose from a robust inventory of houses, condos, town houses, duplexes and apartments from around the country; and Rentfish (http://www.rentfish.com), a national apartment website offering customizable searches by neighborhood, favorite coffee spot, sports arena, famous landmark and more.