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Long-term rental property investors (and property managers who manage rental portfolios) usually understand the importance of keeping expenses low to maximize cash flow and profits.
It’s fairly easy to shop around for the cheapest loan providers, insurance carriers, and maintenance materials—every dollar you save on your monthly costs will be an extra dollar of profit you’ll keep from your properties.
In most cases, though, investors and property managers forget the importance of maximizing their gross rents to improve their long-term profits. A property rented for $250 below market can potentially cost you $3,000 in yearly income.
Gone are the days when you had to guess or ask around to find out how much a property could or should rent for or where your local rental market is headed. Modern platforms can give you access to actionable, real-time rental data and empower you to make smarter (and more profitable) decisions.
And that’s precisely where RentCast comes in.
What Is RentCast?
RentCast is an online platform designed to help investors and property managers maximize the rents they collect from their tenants, keep their lease-up and vacancy periods low, and track their properties and local markets in one place.
You can use it for free online; the basic features don’t require creating an account. Although you’ll probably want to so you can take advantage of everything RentCast offers.
It works just as well for single-family homes, condos, small 2-4 unit multi-family properties and apartment units in larger commercial buildings, with data available nationwide in all 50 U.S. states.
If you’re a landlord or property management company that manages long-term rental properties, you’re exactly who RentCast was intended for.
Look Up Rents for Any Property
One of the core features of RentCast is to help you figure out how much you can rent a specific property for.
For an investor or landlord, this is a critical piece of information—when you’re analyzing new properties before purchasing and leasing existing rentals, you already own.
While you don’t want to leave money on the table and price your rentals well below market, minimizing your vacancy periods’s also a good idea by not being overly aggressive.
By simply typing in an address and selecting a few basic home features, RentCast will give you an accurate rent estimate for that property, all in just a few seconds:
Even better, you’ll see a list of the most similar rental comps in the surrounding area (which RentCast uses to calculate the estimated rent), so you can check what similar properties are renting nearby.
No automated estimate will be perfect 100% of the time, but the developers of RentCast have used years of rental data, trial and error, and tons of user feedback to refine their estimation algorithm and make it as accurate as possible.
View Local Market Trends
It’s often helpful to look at individual properties and their rents and the general market trends for the local neighborhood or zip code.
For example, if you’re on the fence about buying property on the east or west side of town, comparing how the rents have increased (or decreased) over time in each area can help you pick a more favorable place to invest in. In addition, analyzing historical rent fluctuations as a landlord can help you spot strengthening or softening market conditions and change how you approach your next vacancy or lease renewal.
While the free version of RentCast allows you to look up unlimited rent estimates for individual properties, the RentCast Pro upgrade (just $12/month with an annual plan) will also give you access to detailed rental market reports for any zip code:
These reports will not only show you average rents for the entire market and different property types but also how those rents have changed and fluctuated over time.
Plus, you’ll see a market composition analysis, which is great for checking which property types are more common in the area. It can also help identify which properties are easier to lease.
Generate Reports With One Click
Looking up all of this rental data in your browser is great, but RentCast also makes it easy to share property and market reports with your clients, partners, or property owners.
These reports can be an excellent value-add for your clients, lead generation or prospecting, or even as a way to present information to your investment partners.
Track Your Rental Portfolio
RentCast ties all of its rental data together with its portfolio tracking tools, designed to help landlords and property managers maximize their rents over the long term.
With a few clicks, you can add your rental properties and their existing leases to RentCast and enable these useful portfolio tracking features:
- Rent alerts: Set a specific rent target (either as a dollar amount or as a percentage increase), and you’ll get an instant notification when the estimated property rent reaches that level.
- Market updates: Get regular market update emails straight to your inbox with the estimated property rent and recently listed properties nearby.
- Potential rent increases: See potential rent increases for each property and your entire portfolio to understand how much you can increase your cash flow.
- Historical trends: Once you’ve added your properties and leases, you’ll see a time graph with how your actual and estimated rents have changed over time.
You’ll notice that RentCast wasn’t designed to help you track your rental expenses, manage maintenance, or collect rent. Instead, it focuses specifically on helping you maximize your rental income and cash flow, which other property management and accounting platforms often neglect.
RentCast vs. Rentometer
RentCast is often compared to Rentometer, another platform that offers some of the same features as RentCast.
While Rentometer has been around for a while, here is why we think RentCast is a much better choice in today’s market:
- RentCast has no daily or monthly limits on how many property rent estimates you can look up, even on the free plan.
- RentCast rent estimates and comps tend to be more accurate, and you can fine-tune them based on the property type, layout, and size.
- With RentCast, you can view historical market trends and performance for any zip code in the U.S.
- RentCast has a suite of tools to help you track and optimize your rental portfolio, including rent alerts, market updates, and historical rent tracking.
- RentCast has a nationwide property and rental data API, which you can use to power your real estate applications, CRMs, and workflows (more on this later).
Overall, RentCast gives you more bang for your buck (and more accurate data) on their free plan and offers much more value with the RentCast Pro upgrade as well.
Access Property Data With the RentCast API
If you’re a data nerd or somebody who likes to build your own automations, systems, or workflows—you’re in luck. RentCast comes with a public REST API that you can use to access all of its rental data programmatically:
Whether you want to look up rent estimates for thousands of properties in bulk, connect RentCast data to your CRMs or applications, or build custom Zapier automations with real-time property data, the RentCast API is a perfect solution.
As with any API development, it will require some coding and integration skills, but the RentCast API docs make it easy to learn and start using the different API endpoints in minutes.
Also, a note about API pricing—if you compare the RentCast API to other property data providers like DataTree, ATTOM, or CoreLogic, you’ll notice that it offers the same data sets for a fraction of their cost.
Combine that with flexible licensing terms that allow you to use RentCast data for pretty much any legal use case without attribution or long-term contracts, and you’ve got yourself a perfect solution for your property data needs.
Wrapping Up: Is RentCast Right For You?
Overall, RentCast delivers a ton of value and actionable data that is especially useful to investors and property managers looking to grow their rental portfolios with new acquisitions or maximize the cash flow of their existing investments.
It focuses on helping you understand how much your properties can rent for and what’s going on with your local rental market—both important for maximizing your rental income and minimizing vacancies.
Plus, its comprehensive property and rental data API are perfect for individuals and companies looking to power their apps, operations, and workflows with nationwide property data.
If you’re only focused on land investing, flipping, or wholesaling, this platform is probably not for you. But if you’re a rental investor or PM who wants to ensure you’re not leaving money on the table, RentCast will be an invaluable addition to your real estate toolbox.
Get 20% off RentCast Pro with the RETIPSTER promo code. Get started today.
About the Author
Anton Ivanov is a US Navy veteran, real estate investor, and entrepreneur with a 40-unit rental portfolio across three states. He founded two popular real estate software platforms—RentCast and DealCheck—and is passionate about helping others achieve lasting wealth through real estate investing.