Video listing app Replay Listings and apartment rating service RentCity have jointly announced a partnership.
RentCity ratings will begin rolling out on Replay Listings’ agent-provided video walk-throughs with the intent of providing thoroughly authentic reviews of available New York City apartments.
Mobile app Replay Listings was reviewed in July, earning four stars for its well-organized map search of unedited video tours, provided by agents with strict directions to eschew marketing graphics and even audio narration.
Buyers can see both open and exclusive properties. The exact locations (addresses) can be hidden to prevent competing agents from unethically capitalizing on their colleagues’ exclusive until an in-person showing can be arranged. It prevents buyers from bypassing them, too.
According to a press release on the partnership, the proprietary “RentCity Score” will accompany Replay Listings’ virtual tour listings to provide critical information renters need to know behind every building, including crime rates, violations, noise complaints and more.
RentCity positions itself as “the voice for New York City tenants.” Founded in March 2020, and it claims more than 640,000 buildings have been subject to its scoring system.
“[Replay Listings founder] Rodolfo and I met in early 2020 through a mutual friend who happens to be an NYC broker,” said RentCity co-founder and CEO Brandon Procak in an email to Inman. “We quickly realized we shared similar passions to improve the rental experience for New Yorkers through our respective platforms.”
As with Replay Listings, RentCity’s platform earned significant growth due to the pandemic’s impact on in-person property tours.
“Pre-COVID, prospective tenants could physically visit a unit to perform their own inspection. Now, with many leases signed ‘sight-unseen’ (through virtual means), the tenant is further removed from the truth,” Procak said. “Considering that annualized rent can range from $10,000 to $50,000, average moving fees of $1,250 and broker fees, the financial impact of making a decision based on little to no information can be debilitating.”
Localize is another NYC-apartment search app designed with the same “ensure the truth in renting” mindset.
The company uses a wide swath of curated geographically granular web content, illustrated maps, and a trove of public and private data networks to reveal the character of specific neighborhoods, streets, buildings and even particular floors. It was reviewed in 2019.
The partnership was close to eight months in the making, according to Procak, who also said in the press release that nationwide, two-thirds of renters experience remorse three months after signing a lease.
Replay Listings co-founder and CEO Rodolfo Delgado said the rental industry needs to make honesty as high a priority as possible.
“We’re working hard to give everyone access to reliable data. This time, it takes the form of unedited videos coupled with authentic tenant’s reviews,” he said. “We need companies who care about bringing honesty into the real estate industry.”
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Craig C. Rowe started in commercial real estate at the dawn of the dot-com boom, helping an array of commercial real estate companies fortify their online presence and analyze internal software decisions. He now helps agents with technology decisions and marketing through reviewing software and tech for Inman.