I recently moved out of Long Island and into Manhattan. Saying that finding an apartment in New York City is easy would be an understatement. With barely a 1% vacancy rate, the NYC rental market is popping. I think I went through ten real estate agents until I found one that I liked and trusted to find me something worth while.
The one thing I learned is that most real estate websites who offer listings pretty much suck when it comes to the New York market. Some of the sites I would recommend to a friend are Naked Apartments, Street Easy, and Apartable. All have their benefits over the standard Realtor.com, Trulia, or Zillow mega listing sites of the world. Realtor.com is my go to listings site if wanting to purchase outside of New York City.
New York is a unique market, it is unlike any other in the world and the multiple listings service only truly exists inside the heads of the really great brokers. While browsing I realized that most of the neighborhood maps for New York were largely imaged based or inefficient. I decided it would be worth an hour or so of my time to look into how real estate listings should be presented in New York City over the internet.
Naked Apartments does it best, they allow you to pick the areas you like and only show you the listings in your preferred areas with any additional filters/amenities. At the end of the day, it comes down to location, location, location right? Google Maps offers an amazing API to show visual GEOJSON data on top of their map which really compliments an awesome dataset from PediaCities I found. The code is published on my GitHub account:
Maybe real estate websites can use this technology in the future to make quick and efficient neighborhood selectors for real estate listing search!