Zillow has always been a resource for people in every stage of the home ownership process, whether they’re buyers, sellers, or homeowners.
In late 2009, we added renters to that mix when we launched rental listings on Zillow. And today, we’re delving even further into the world of renters and landlords as we launch Rent Zestimates – estimated rent prices for more than 90 million homes.
Renters make up 70% of all people who move in a given year, but up until now there hasn’t been a way for them to figure out how much they should be paying for rent. I’ve experienced this firsthand, both as a landlord and a tenant. In fact, according to a survey we recently fielded with Ipsos, nearly two-thirds of current renters didn’t do ANY research into fair rent prices before signing their lease.
Enter Rent Zestimates. Computed using a proprietary algorithm that takes public record information, as well as information from hundreds of thousands of rental listings on Zillow, they are starting points in determining a home or apartment’s fair rent price. Combine this with information on comparable homes and apartments for rent on Zillow, and a prospective renter will have many more data points to figure out how much they should pay for a rental. And with Rent Zestimates now on Zillow’s mobile apps as well as on Zillow.com, it’s also easy for renters to arm themselves with data on the go, while they’re out looking at apartments or when walking into a lease negotiation.
It’s not just renters who will benefit, though. Landlords – especially “accidental landlords,” who want or need to move out of their homes, but don’t want to sell in a down market – can use their home’s Rent Zestimate as a starting point to figure out how much they should ask for rent.