Making Rental Data more accessible

In the city I live in, many apartment buildings rental prices are not on zillow/street easy, but on individual websites. I'm going to be scraping this data, and presenting it in useful dashboards for users, in order to help them have more insights into their rental decisions. I had a personal problem not being able to negotiate rent or determine if they have been raising prices and I felt like this is an idea that would be a fun project.

Currently I am building out the webscraper which isn't too difficult, but now i need to make decisions on where to store the data and how to visualize it in the form of trends. From there I will need to determine how to generate revenue from the data via memberships, as well as building an audience and gaining users.

I am going to print out flyers and drop them off door to door in order to have them access my landing page and get email addresses.


If anyone has any tips/thoughts/comments, i am happy to discuss and appreciate the help!

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    do you have any interest in building this for another market? I'm based in HK where there's a high proportion of rentals and people regularly change apartments so I can see this being useful here. Fancy working together on this?

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      I appreciate you recognizing this idea might be useful!

      I'm not sure its the best use of my time to build for a market I'm not in, but if you wanted to do something similar we could collaborate and build publicly together, which would be helpful in bringing an audience to our product and getting more eyes on it. Let me know if you want to discuss.

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        Yep I'm keen to discuss more. I imagine once you have the dashboard built, it shouldn't be too hard to plug in data from other sources you scrape?

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    People often need these kinds of sites very intensely within a 3 month span, and then never again. I'd imagine that you might not be able to usefully use signups for buyers unless the launch is impending. Who needs this on a perpetual basis? Real estate agents are the most obvious. Maybe reach out to agents in your area. Banks or other institutions that estimate home values might want this kind of data. Sellers or renters want to have competitive pricing data - maybe ask people who run large apartment buildings.

    When you get closer to launch, the flyer idea sounds really good. You could also post in online local hangouts - if there's an /r/denver post it there, nextdoor, etc

    Good luck!

    1. 1

      You make valid points. Renters themselves would only need this during that certain time span each year, where is building owners could use it all the time when making business decisions. Building owners/property maangers are the ones i'm taking the data from, and i'm pretty sure web scraping is in a legal gray area, so I'd really need to figure out how to sell it and whom it benefits most. I wonder what these people would think if they know i am taking selling this data.

      Given i'm still some time away from actually getting a MVP up (need to decide how to present data and get front end/back end of site configured), you think I should wait until that to distribute the flyers?

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        To be honest, you're going to know better than I will :) It may be worth handing out a limited number just to see what happens.

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