Trulia, like some of its competitors (e.g., Zillow), has branched into rental property search, the company announced today. This is a response to changes in the market. According to Trulia CEO Pete Flint approximately 30% of those in the market are equally looking at buying and renting.
Flint told me that the rental data on Trulia are coming directly from brokers/agents, aggregators and a range of other sources. He said that anyone can add a rental listing for free. Flint asserts that Trulia’s rental database is more comprehensive than any other rental property site online. He also said the company’s search functionality and filters allow for a wide range of searches and lookups than competitors’ sites.
Another interesting feature being launched is user ratings for neighborhoods, which will be featured on property listings pages. According to Trulia, users “can rank neighborhood attributes on 12 different traits including parking, cleanliness, safety, public transport and weather, along with many more topics. There will even be details about whether a neighborhood is good for a family vs. singles, etc.”
Listings can also be shared on Facebook.
There will also be an updated mobile website that is optimized for the iPhone and other smartphones featuring the rental search capabilities and listings. Flint told me that he sees the rental market as even more suited to mobile than the for sale market. That’s because “it’s a less considered purchase . . . and the inventory is more perishable,” according to Flint.
He added that roughly 10% of all Trulia’s page views are now coming from mobile devices.