The New York Times' Michelle Higgins examines the growing number of apps meant to match a renter's chief concerns with a specific neighborhood, a sort of Match.com for apartment hunters still homing in on a submarket in which to search.
These apps, such as PlaceILive, PicketFencer, and StreetEasy, factor such considerations as the quality of schools, the proximity of public transportation, even a neighborhood's "vibe," by pairing big data and algorithms guided by a renter's preferences.
PlaceILive, a start-up based in Lithuania, introduced an interactive quiz called Match earlier this year designed to help find your ideal New York City neighborhood. You answer a series of questions — Do you play any sports? Which is your preferred mode of transportation? Do you want quiet, green, residential, diverse, social, hip, artsy, L.G.B.T.-friendly? And then, taking your budget and your office address into account, PlaceILive analyzes and prioritizes 288 neighborhoods, then delivers its top 10 picks.
Results draw on statistics from the Census Bureau, New York Police Department crime maps, and other open data sources. Clicking on “more details” lists these stats along with resident reviews from the website StreetAdvisor, school ratings from Greatschools.org, a map, and pictures of grocery stores, restaurants, bars, and other amenities from Foursquare, a destination for crowd-sourced reviews of businesses like cafes.