This journal entry was written by me, Brandon Nolet. I’ll be writing about the things that most annoy me when it comes to apartment hunting, specifically online.
Point of Contact
I’m not exactly an anti-social person, but I dislike speaking over the phone. Whether it’s because I have a hard time understanding the person on the other end of the call, for various reasons, or because I usually end up getting voicemails when calling on the weekend. Suffice to say I prefer textual conversations, especially with strangers.
Some of these ads, however, list either only a phone number, or require you to contact them over a phone call. If you’re going to not check your email, you should at least offer a text message opportunity.
This is more a gripe about posters specifically on Kijiji, the Canadian classifieds ad listing website, but I’m sure other sites have this. Instead of removing the ad when the poster doesn’t want to accept requests for visit for a while will keep the ad up, but modify the title. They’ll put in the title something like \*PAUSED\* or, worse, put that in the description of the ad.
If you don’t want to receive requests for a visit for a while, it’d be much preferable to take the ad down and re-post it if the current visitors are not satisfactory; otherwise you’re just doing the lazy thing and taking up space in the list of ads returned to the user.
I understand all the valid reasons for not allowing pets. That’s not what this gripe is about. There are some posters that say that they allow no pets but are okay with cats. I’ll look into the description and it’ll say “no dogs, cats allowed” or something like that and that poses a simple issue.
When performing a search, I like to use the filters so I can remove posts that I would never be interested in anyway. One of the requirements is that the ad says “yes” or “limited” to pets. It’s nice that Kijiji has “limited” but it’s unfortunate to have listings that would allow cats, but simply choose “no” because they don’t want questions about dogs.
This is probably the biggest gripe I have relating to apartment searching online.
The first part of this gripe is shitty quality photos. I understand that not everyone has a DSLR camera and that not everyone is a pro when it comes to photography. However, it’s not an excuse when photos are super blurry because you were super quick to take the photos or when the photos are a picture of an ad you posted on another website. Take your time to take the pics and to post them.
The second part is when the pictures might be of good quality, but don’t show the whole apartment. I’m not talking about taking pictures of every closet. I’m talking about when a room in the apartment doesn’t have a photo of it. Even worse though is when the only pictures are that of the outside of the building, or other places within the building like a pool or a lobby.
The last part is when there’s absolutely no photos. Unless you have the building’s address listed and we can see that the outside is a nice place, you probably won’t get very many requests for information or visit. Maybe that’s your point of not putting pictures, but if the apartment ends up looking like shit upon visit, you’re not doing yourself any favours.
The apartment hunt isn’t going as well as I had hoped. I wish that we had a few more options but that’s what you get when your lease is up at the end of August instead of the end of June. Such is life. I’m thankful for the options I do have, however; I’m aware that there are others less fortunate.