If you're looking for an apartment to rent, then you might want to take advantage of a search engine that is dedicated to locating your ideal rental in real time. PadMapper is the engine that was developed with apartment listers and searchers in mind. It's easy to use and it has helped thousand identify potential rental apartments in record time. If you haven't heard about the search engine yet, then here are twenty things that you didn't know about PadMapper that might be of interest to you.
1. PadMapper makes apartment searching very easy and here's how
The user interface is designed to be super easy to use. It begins with an introduction that tells you that their engine makes "Apartment Hunting Suck Less." It's a novel enough statement but it happens to be true. There is a big blue search bar at the top and it simply prompts you to enter the name of the city and state where you want to live. You type the information in and it brings up the listings for apartments in the area that you indicate. There is a list of popular cities below you can choose from as well, if you're interested in any of the larger ones.
2. PadMapper searches apartments in the US and Canada
One aspect of PadMapper that is appreciated by the residents of both the US and Canada is that they research information in their databases for the United States as well as Canada. The two countries are very close to each other and there are frequently citizens of both countries that need to find a place to live because they travel back and forth for work. Many US citizens have jobs in Canada and vice versa.
3. PadMapper is keeping up with modern technology
There is a high demand for all online service providers to offer the latest technology that is compatible with smartphones. PadMapper has been very responsive to these needs and has implemented the use of a brand new smartphone app that they call Post a Pad. The app allows people who have apartments or rooms for rent to post them on PadMapper straight from their devices. The app is compatible with all devices with Android or iOS.
4. The search operates via a full-screen map
The visuals used in this search engine are very detailed and helpful for apartment searchers. PadMapper brings up a full-screen map with indications of where apartments are available in its database as the user scrolls around the map of the area. The map includes the area that was first entered in the search criteria. As the user moves around the map, the listings are loaded. You can zoom into the map to more specific areas and the map will load even more listings within that area. If you zoom out, you broaden the search area. This is a time-saving tool that offers listings in real time with specific locations which save a lot of time scanning through ads that contain listings from a variety of different places. PadMapper hones in on the specific areas you want to know about and it couldn't be faster or easier.
5. PadMapper has joined forces with Zumper
PadMapper expanded their services to include even more listing results by collaborating with a similar service called Zumper. Zumper offers an alert system that notifies you when apartments matching your search criteria become available. It offers an easy and convenient tool that people who have apartments for rent can use to list them and gain exposure to thousands of potential renters who are looking for a home to rent. It's also useful for renters to find the ideal home based on a set of specified criteria. It saves a lot of time and effort when looking for an apartment to rent and it provides all the details that you need to narrow down your search instead of wasting time looking at places that don't quite fit your budget, the area you want to live in or your space requirements.
6. PadMapper is safe to use
There are several apps that provide targeted search engines that are so filled with advertisements that they can overwhelm your operating system making them difficult to use. PadMapper has kept its security system up to date by constantly upgrading the security of the app to make it safe and impenetrable to outside sources including viral marketing ads. They use a unique algorithm that purges spammy listings out of the database to ensure that only high-quality and legitimate listings are posted to the site. You are very well-protected when you use the search engine. They also keep an eye out for housing scams and delete this type of posting as soon as it is identified.
7. PadMapper was sued by Craigslist
Craigslist also provides an advertising space for apartments for rent. PadMapper was initially designed to search through the apartment advertisements on all sites like Craigslist to find legitimate and high-quality listings to include in their vast database. Craigslist took exception to what they perceived to be as an intrusion on their privacy and filed a lawsuit against PadMapper for a cease and desist. They don't want to share the advertisements placed on their site with any other listing companies. The controversy that took place in 2012 caused PadMapper to stop including ads that were placed on Craigslist.
8. PadMapper settled with Craigslist for $1 Million
The lawsuit that Craigslist filed against PadMapper went in favor of Craigslist. It resulted in PadMapper paying them a $1 million dollar settlement and agreeing that they would no longer use the ads that were posted on Craigslist for rental apartments in their database. PadMapper did, however, achieve a small victory in getting Craigslist to agree to the terms that included a stipulation on the million dollars. It was to be donated to EFF. PadMapper wasn't the only defendant listed in the suit. 3 Tap was also named and was forced to comply under the same conditions as PadMapper.
9. PadMapper doesn't need Craigslist to be successful
Even without the use of Craigslist data, PadMapper still had more than 700,000 listings available in its database as of 2016. The search engine still had access to well over 100 other sites. It is worth noting that the court ruling did not change any of the rules regarding the posting of rental listings. The information that is contained in these types of listings is not copyrighted nor protected under any special rules. PadMapper violated the rules of Craigslist website but they did not violate any other rules or laws in place. This is on top of the tool that they provide for owners to list their rentals directly into their database. They offer plenty of options that make the PadMapper search engine one of the most useful available.
10. PadMapper was acquired by Zumper
Zumper actually purchased PadMapper and now serves as the parent company for the search engine. This change took place after the legal battle it endured with Craigslist. Although it was rumored that PadMapper was acquired for an amount that was less than $10 million, the executives will not disclose the exact amount that was paid.
11. Zumper improved PadMapper
PadMapper was doing well prior to its acquisition by Zumper, but there were some great improvements made after the deal was closed. Both of PadMappers Android and iOS apps received an upgrade and the map with PadMapper's logo also received a refresh. There were also enhancements made to the desktop version. This was a great way to start off the new relationship that the two companies shared in the merger.
12. PadMapper remained intact as a business after the acquisition
Zumper made the decision to allow PadMapper to operate on its own but as a subsidiary of the parent company. PadMapper retained its own structure, but there were plans set into motion to bring the two products together with a shared backend. This meant that the same staff was allowed to keep their positions and continue mostly, with business as usual.
13. The company founder likely still owns the lions share of PadMapper
Neither Zumper nor PadMapper is disclosing many of the details about the acquisition or how it will impact either of the companies. What we do know is that PadMapper has never raised any funds from the outside. The founder Eric DeMenthon started it as a student project and it grew of its own accord quite organically. It is believed that DeMenthon still retains the majority of stocks and interest in PadMapper, even though an acquisition deal was struck with Zumper. Both DeMenthon and his CTO Rob Crowell jumped on board with Zumper.
14. The founder developed PadMapper to solve his own problem
Eric Dementhon and a few of his friends were looking for a place to rent in New York City. They were hoping to avoid paying a broker fee in the process. They didn't want to get roped into thee games that brokers tend to play when they give as a faulty description of the places they're managing as rentals. It wastes a lot of time to be taken to a potential rental only to discover that it's not even close to being what it was described as. They grew weary of clicking on a listing that was advertised online and then finds out they were given bogus information. The friends began discussing what an ideal site would look like for finding apartments quickly and easily and getting the full story on them. They wanted the site to have a mechanism for notifying them when a new listing describing their search criteria was added to the database. This is where the inspiration for PadMapper came from.
15. Dementhon was a programmer who developed the site
It took some experimentation and a lot of elbow grease to develop the PadMapper engine. Eric spent his weekends and nights when he wasn't at work experimenting with Google maps and crawling the web. It took a few months and then although he didn't have an elaborate plan in place, he quit his job and began work with a code he had been toying with. He developed a few similar programs, but PadMapper was the one that became popular with people who were searching for an apartment.
16. Google worked with DeMenthon to reduce the costs of operation
DeMenthon thought that his plans for PadMapper were gong by the wayside when Google started charging for Maps. With PadMapper doing 10 million loads every month, the cost would be prohibitive. He contacted the guys at Google who reduced the public pricing at a drastic rate. This helped him to continue forward with the popular site that was gaining in notoriety with the public.
17. Lifehacker launched PadMapper for DeMenthon
Eric shared that he was very pleasantly surprised when Lifehacker took on the task of launching PadMapper for him. He noticed it when he was coding and checking his server activity. He saw that the site was experiencing some profound activity and when he turned on the analytics, he saw that Lifehacker had taken the initiative to launch the site with thousands of people checking it out. There were tens of thousands of hits and he couldn't have been more pleased with the influx of users. There had previously only been up to 200 people using the site on any given day and it exploded within a single day and usage has not gone below 1,500 hits on any given day since.
18. PadMapper has been given a lot of support by outsiders
It's amazing how much support DeMenthon received when he was attempting to launch PadMapper, then keep it going. When the site was still in its infancy, Google helped by cutting their prices on Maps. Lifehacker was right there supporting it with the launch that caused the site to explode with activity. In all likelihood, the people in charge of these companies supported a site that would cut through the nonsense that people looking for a rental have to go through. It's something that most of us have been through and it wastes a lot of time and leads to unnecessary disappointment.
19. PadMapper lumps complaints together then he addresses them
You might not get an immediate reply when you lodge a complaint with PadMapper or if you make a suggestion for improving the site. Eric is the person who handles user requests and criticisms. He reads the messages that he receives but he's not the best at responding immediately. He's happy about the feedback, but he waits until he hears a complaint or suggestion multiple times before he responds or initiates a fix. It's just the way that he does business.
20. Most of PadMappers features are automated
Eric doesn't like to spend a lot of time on maintenance so he implements automated systems. This helps him to save a lot of time so he can focus on more time to develop new innovations than devoting hours to maintain the system. When he's in a developmental mode he switches off all distractions.
Written by Dana Hanson
Read more posts by Dana Hanson