The Best Real Estate Apps for Renting & Buying

There once was a time when buying and renting property was strictly between the client and a real estate agent. These days, however, people have the advantage of access to the variety of online tools and websites dedicated to house hunting. The increasing ubiquity of mobile devices such as smartphones and the consequent explosion of apps has gifted house hunters with an even greater treasure trove of tools. Here are some of the best apps available for those in the market for renting and buying.

Zillow Apps

One of the best real estate packs for both Android and iOS users is Zillow. First: the grandfather of all real estate search apps, Zillow Real Estate, which was first released in 2009, offers info on over 100 million homes and apartments for sale and rent. Included are properties that are nearing or have already been foreclosed on. It utilizes the GPS location services of the device and users can also save filters, get estimates on properties, and calculate mortgage/rental rates. For those wishing only to look at rental properties, try out Zillow Rentals, which lets you contact the landlord directly through the app. The Mortgage Calculator & Mortgage Rates app is perfect for handling the financial calculations and gives customized quotes.


Trulia is one of the great apps out there for real estate. It offers a smooth and streamlined interface that makes it easy to use whether the user is looking for rentals or to buy. There’s a useful Layers feature that lets you see heat maps, local boundaries, amenities, and schools, giving the browser a virtual tour of the area without having to move. Other useful filters include square footage, price range, rooms, and location. Both iOS and Android users can take advantage of Trulia.

PadMapper Apartment Search

Another app for filter lovers is PadMapper. Those in the renting game will especially find the searches for full-term leases, roomshares, no fee or rental by owner only, and pets options extremely helpful. Accompanied by the online site, this app is great for narrowing the search down to exactly what the user wants. The app, however, isn’t always updated super quickly, and you may have to contact many locations to make up for the lag. PadMapper is compatible with iOS and Android devices.

This app by Move, Inc. is primarily a listing of agents, so for-sale-by-owner properties won’t be found here. However, the app is updated quickly and is extremely accurate. There are options for both renters and buyers as well as a set of standard property search filters. Some of the best features include the ability to specify the area you wish to search in, the constant updates, and the price labels that appear on the map. The app is available for both iOS and Android and works in perfect combination with the website.

If you’re in the market for a new place to live, whether you’re renting or buying, consider doing some hunting on your own using one of these real estate apps. They’ll help you gather information on what’s available, what you’re likely to spend, and more. And if you find that you’re in over your head, you can always go the old fashioned route and call a real estate agent for help. Happy hunting!