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Why do people use Craigslist to rent out their apartments?

It seems one of the conundrums of the decade - everybody has either had a terrible experience using Craigslist or has heard of someone who has, so why do people persist in using it? Or have you found an alternative that serves your needs? I'd love to hear about it!

Personally I love using craigslist, I'm in a college town and I seem to get a better group of people from craigslist then I do using the local paper. Also since it is free I save 60-75 dollars each time i have to rent an apt.  You do have some bad applicants and tenants like you do from any source but that is what the screening process is for.
Ive had good experience with craigslist too
To me, time is money. I got tired of meeting people interested that became a no-show, showing the unit, and running credit checks. In CA, I use a RE Agency that also has property management. I only use them for finding me a tenant. They do all the advertising, showing and credit checks. When they have a possible tenant, I get a copy of all the info (application, credit check) which I review and accept/reject. The Agency has to use my application, initial inspection sheet, and Lease Agreement/Addendums. The cost to me is ½ months rent. This fee is deductable while my time is not…… As for Craigslist, my daughter uses it all the time when she’s looking for a new place. -----Disclaimer: Since I’ve been answering a lot of questions, I thought I would make the following statement. I’m not affiliated with EZlandlord Forms. I’m just here (not sure how long) to help those that have questions. Having 40+ yrs with Rental Property and done well, it’s my way of “Pay it Forward (check out the movie).” However, it is up to you to become familiar with your State/Local laws. I always like to know if the suggestions I offer are helpful. Feel free to comment anytime. Thanks in Advance.
One thing I started doing last year that has cut my no-shows way way down, is I only set up app. for the same day. When Someone wants to schedule one for the future even just 1 day away I tell them how many people no show and that they have to call me the day of the app. to let me know they are still coming. This has made my life so much easier.
Overall I have had good response from Craigslist.  Until recently I have only advertised on there and had no trouble getting responses.  A friend of mine who has a couple rentals gave me a tip to set up a "Open House" instead of individual showings when possible.  I usually advertise on Craigslist and put a date and time in the ad for when the event is.  This way I only have to take up my time once, anyone interested comes over and can see that place, plus I only interfer with a current tenant once (if there's one in the property at the time).    Recently I started using   It is a military housing referal program.  I have a fairly strong military presence in the area, so it seems to work well.  I have friends who only advertise on AHRN.    My thoughts...
There is a new rental listing website currently under construction, Its called  It is a dedicated rental advertising site that will blow Craigslist and Trulia out of the water.  Right now, tenants have to sift through A LOT of crap to find what they want. Rental Dweeb fixes that, Check it out.
I use Craigslist and only Craigslist on all my rentals.  I also do the "open house" although I have showings on 2 days, not just one, but for 2 hours at a time.  I don't list the address of the property on the ad, either, I ask for people to actually call or email me and I can then determine if its real or not.  I get a lot of applicants that way (around 15 or so) and can then have the pick of the litter -- so to speak, I use first qualified applicant.  (Many don't qualify but that's the way it goes.)
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