Smaller cities embrace rental brokers

February 23, 2014 02:00PM

 As the rental market becomes more competitive across the country, more middle city citizens are hiring brokers to help them hunt down a lease.

While rental brokers are a mainstay of big cities like New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, brokers told the Los Angeles Times that throughout the country, apartment hunters are increasingly looking for professional help.

“The main reason to use any real estate professional is to save time and utilize an expert’s knowledge of the market that can take decades to build,” Lee Lin, co-founder and chief executive of RentHop.com, an apartment listing sight, told the Los Angeles Times. “The best deals change daily, and market trends can be highly localized to specific neighborhoods or even streets within the same city. And every case still requires a scheduled physical inspection of the premises.”

And as the rental market continues to tighten, brokers said that landlords prefer to deal with a professional, rather than a would-be tenant, in order to streamline the paperwork and screening process. [LAT]Christopher Cameron