Place has a great business model--market a wide range of apartments in cool areas, jack up the rent a little, and keep the difference. It's free, but they will pressure you into signing something that day. Use Craigslist or call the actual management company for a building you like--they can usually cut you a deal on the first month's rent, waive the application/credit check fee, etc,
I came in last Saturday and was promptly attended to. My agent was friendly, upbeat, and I felt very comfortable with her from the start. I had had pretty dismal luck looking for a new apartment on my own, and I was quite relieved to be assisted by a person who was knowledgeable and interested in my satisfaction.
We visited five or six potential apartments that day, and throughout the experience, my agent was easy to talk to, positive and friendly. We discussed the pros and cons of each location, and she was helpful, but not pushy, in aiding me in making a decision.
I have submitted an application to the apartment I liked best. Finally, I feel like I've made real progress in my search.
I will definitely be recommending Chicago Apartment Finders and my agent in the future.
PROS: Free, Knowledgeable Agents, Great Service, Professional
I went with a friend on Saturday to see what they could locate for me in my price range. Their service is free. They were very nice, and there was no waiting. When we entered, we were immediately impressed by their professionalism and friendliness. After talking with us, they offered to drive us around the city to show us the available apartments. My friend was not pleased at any of them, as she said they were either in a bad area or the apartment buildings themselves were just gross. Although I do not live in the area, I am giving this business three stars because I think maybe that was just what was available then. Maybe another day it would have been different. Good luck!
I visited this apartment finder service to find a small studio or one bedroom priced under $800 and they showed me the biggest dumps I've ever seen, I couldn't believe this was the best available in my price range. They did drive me around to see them and my agent was nice but I felt the selection was extremely poor and since I was going to be living there that is what mattered most. I went on a saturday morning and they were ready to go as soon as I got there with no wait but the agent was a little too anxious to get me into a unit that day when I made it clear I wanted to look around more.
PROS: no waiting, friendly people
CONS: poor selection to choose from
I used these guys when I first moved into the city and they are very helpful in understanding your priorities and showing you properties that meet your criteria. They are professional and trustworthy. You don't pay anything for the service; the agents make their money when they provide a qualified tenant to a landlord so it's in their best interest to make everyone happy.
If you have a laptop and a cell phone, you can do what these guys do. The guy who helped me had only been living in Chicago for 3 months, knew next to NOTHING about the places he was showing me, and told me that I wouldn't find anything under $1300/mo (I have since found a gorgeous blvd apartment for $1150 - and I didn't have to pay a fee to a guy for driving me around)
I can see how this service would be helpful for people who don't want to do the legwork on their own, but I found it frustrating and was consistently being shown places that I knew I wouldn't like (again - because I knew the area better than he did). At the third place we looked at there was actually a squatter living in the unit!!!!!!!!! And they wanted to charge me $1400/mo for that? Crazy.
Bottom line: overpriced and uninformative. I did much better walking around the neighborhoods I liked and taking fliers or surfing Craigs List.. and then scheduling the showings myself.
I feel badly for the people who had a bad experience with Chicago Apartment Finders. They must not have had Steve Davis!!! WOW from the moment we began talking to him (my Dad and I) he was intent on finding us the PERFECT apartment and was willing to put up with my severe OCDness. After the first apartment it felt as if he knew exactly what we were looking for. Our application process was complicated by the fact that two roommates were out of state but he made it work so smoothly. I know Steve will be the first person I go to for ANY real-estate needs. Hands down, he is phenomenal.
I was moving from Kalamazoo MI to Chicago and found this apartment finder site through google. I made an appointment with my roommate and drove down to Chicago from MI, we had an appointment at 11am and came in the lobby area was very nice and clean. The receptionist was friendly and offered us cookies and beverages, we waited for our agent to come and get us. Within 4 minutes our agent came out and brought us back to his desk, introduced himself and his name was Jon Plous. Very friendly and upfront with all the details of how the service worked as well as what our price range would get us and we explained what we were looking for in an apartment as well as in a neighborhood. He drove us around to five apartments and didn't B.S. around or show us crappy apartments, he was so friendly and so upfront and honest about what we would get and what we were in for, when we move to a big city. The third apartment we looked at was THE ONE! It was on Clark street and in the middle of Wrigleyville/ Lakeview- There were people out and about always doing something, there were great restaurants, great nightlife and close to the Red/Brown line stop at Belmont. We decided to look at two more places to make sure we weren't jumping into the wrong apartment. We knew that THE ONE was THE ONE and wanted some time to think on it and discuss between my roommate and I , Jon Plous let us go to lunch and discuss what we wanted to do and how we wanted to make a decision. We went to lunch at Big City Tap which was recommended by Jon Plous so we went to lunch and decided this was the one and we wanted to sign the lease right then with Jon Plous. He never pressured us or got frustrated with all of our questions and comments on each apartment, he gave us GREAT advice and really helped us out, two girls from MI in a big city, we loved interacting and having Jon Plous as our guide for finding an apartment. We went to sign our lease and it happened that the management company DLG lowered our rent by 50$ !!!! We also had a difficult issue of having 2 cats and one dog, so when we came in and let Jon Plous know this, we were afraid that we were going to have a large pet deposit or not be able to have all three pets, Jon Plous assured us that we would find something in our price range and we would be able to move in a place that would be cute and nice and in a good neighborhood. Jon Plous was so friendly and so informed and the best person that I could have ever had to help us find an apartment. I would recommend Jon Plous to ANYONE who needs an apartment or needs to start looking for a new place to live. He was AMAZING!!!! I am so lucky that I was paired with Jon Plous to find an apartment because it was a great experience and it could have been horrible if I had went to a different apartment search business. GO TO JON PLOUS if you need a new apartment in the City of Chicago!!! I recommend him to anyone, even friends from Mi that are moving to Chicago I give out his business card to my co workers and let everyone I know that Jon Plous was an amazing agent and so helpful and knowledgeable, I couldn't have dreamed of a better experience.
BEST EXPERIENCE EVER!!!!! JON PLOUS IS AWESOME!!! CAF WAS GREAT TO WORK WITH AND JON PLOUS IS THE BEST AGENT AT THE LAKEVIEW OFFICE!!!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS PLACE!!!!!!!!!!
I LOVE Chicago Apartment Finders. They have placed me in two different apartments and both apartment agents were helpful and sincere. I would use Chicago Apartment Finders again and would reccomend them to anyone who was moving or relocating in Chicago. My roommate and I went to Chicago Apartment Finders and told them we wanted a very detailed list with a specific price range. We saw 5 amazing apartments that met all of our requests (High rise, doorman, pool, workout facility, allows dogs, parking, new carpet, two bedrooms, etc.)I have used other apartment companies in the past and they do not compare to Chicago Apartment Finders. They are the best.
KATIE was fantastic! one of my friends is moving here from out of state, and came to look at apartments. i brought my friend, along with two others, and we all crammed into her jeep while she took us around the neighboorhoods and showed us about 6-7 apartments. she was so helpful, fun, and full of information. she was also extremely accomadating.
I am extremely happ in my new place, and will reccomend Chicago Apartment Finder to everyone and Steve!
Steve Davis at the Belmont office is an incredible asset to Chicago Apartment Finders and the best resource you will ever find while apartment searching in Chicago.Steve always kept my qualifications in mind while selecting places for me to check out. He never showed my anything out of my price range or that didn't meet my specifications (including amenities, location, size). I also got a little picky about what I wanted, but he never lost patience and took me out on 3 different occasions to show me places. I was already more than happy with the service Steve showed me...but on the day of my move in, problems arose, and that's when he really stepped up and proved that he is the best around.When I was getting jerked around by my new landlord, I immediately called CAF, and they got a hold of Steve for me. He rushed over (on a Saturday morning) and made phone call after phone call until we got the situation resolved. After that, he even stayed to help my family and I move my stuff into the apartment.
I had a great experience with Chicago Apartment Finders, but more specifically with one of the leasing agents, Neal Gallagher. It all started with my inquiry about an apartment listed on Craig's List on a Thursday. On Friday morn, Neal called me back to schedule a viewing. He offered to change around his schedule to take me to a viewing 1.5 hours from the time we spoke. He definitely understood putting the client first and he the urgency of the situation. We visited five apartments during one "viewing sesh." At each apartment, he gave me all the facts without leaving anything out: whether or not heating was included; security deposit or move-in/admin fee; rental incentives; proximity to public transport; abundance or lack of street parking, etc. As you can see, he was incredibly thorough and repeated the process like second nature at every single apartment, never leaving anything out. Neal's very good about making the apartment hunt as pleasant as possible. He is great with people, knows how to engage in interesting conversation, and is genuinely interested in helping people either with the apartment search or just offering general advice about things in general. He is incredibly genuine and dedicated and a great communicator. He's a good communicator in the normal sense of the word, but also, what I mean is that he kept me apprised of everything that went on with the rental and approval process. I never really had to wonder what the underwriting and closing departments were doing because he told me how the whole process would work! If I had a question and had to call him, he'd answer the phone just as if we were old friends by saying, "Hi J'nai." Those personal touches did wonders for the apartment search experience. Although I think I liked an apartment in Hyde Park better than one of the ones I saw with Neal, I decided to go with Neal because of all the aforementioned attributes he possesses and professionalism he has. After the closing on my apartment, he even took me out to a celebratory dinner (his dime) to congratulate me on the apartment and to just shoot the best! What a wonderful experience! After dealing with him, I feel that I wanna go and look at apartments everyday (well, not really, because it's hella tiring)! But I feel that I could do it again because the process was so seamless and hassle free with Neal. I think of the process as akin to a bride planning a wedding (me) and Neal as my wedding planner who says, "I've got it under control. You just sit back and enjoy while I handle it. You're on vacation from this day forward." That's what it felt like. Amazing!! All in all, he was amazingly wonderful, and I feel that I've found and met a new friend and hang out buddy because he is sooo down to earth. And heads up ladies--he's super cute! You're going to want to rent an apartment from him even if you don't find one that you really like!!
I know what you're thinking. 5 stars for this joint? No, not for CAF, but for Ross Gube, who was a Rock Star. He was tireless, honest and professional in his quest to find me an apartment. I really liked his style. He was incredibly patient with me during a time when I was stressed out of my mind and I can't thank him enough. In the end I found my apartment elsewhere, but I would still recommend him as an excellent agent.
Due to something completely beyond my or CAF's control, I didn't actually sign a lease through CF, but their services are top notch. TK is the most hard working, honest and friendly person. She patiently listened to my situation and promptly responded to my concerns and questions. She was really great and provided some much-needed advice and support. I learned a lot about Chicago apartments and tenants' rights from TK, and I truly owe her for her time and commitment. While I ultimately found a better match with a private owner, CAF's did everything and more than what I had hoped for.Garret is also a great agent, and Ryan in closing was awesome. They all answered my numerous questions and acted as mediator between management companies.
I am relocating to Chicago and was in town for the weekend when I just happened to walk past Chicago Apartment Finders on Belmont. It was a busy Saturday afternoon and I had no appointment, but after a 10 or 15 minute wait I was able to meet with an agent. If you choose to use this service, I HIGHLY recommend Angie Fucigna. She was very warm, professional, patient, and did not pressure me at all. I told her what I was looking for and she found a bunch of different apartments for me to choose from. I picked six places that I wanted to see and she pointed out the nearest grocery, el, ect. for each place that she drove me to. She kept telling me that she was here to help me and wanted me to find the perfect place. She said that if I didn't find anything I loved on the first trip, we could just return to her office and start over on our search. I feel very confident with my Lincoln Park apartment that Angie helped me find. I would recommend her to anyone in a heartbeat
I have used Chicago Apartment Finders twice now. Both times were great experiences. I had two different people show me apartments and they were both very knowledgeable in what they showed me.
This last time I used them I needed an apartment to move into ASAP (long story). I applied for my apartment and was approved within 2 days. I signed my lease and got my keys on the third day!
I recommend Chicago Apartment Finders to everyone I know!!
I used Chicago Apartment Finders to rent out an apartment in a building I own. The agent found a good tenant and the office worked out a longer lease so that I did not end up with a lease expiring during the winter.
I would go back to Chicago Apartment Finders again next time I need to get an apartment rented. My experience was positive.
My appointment with the chicago apartment finders was a nightmare. I made an appointment four days in advance but when I got there no one had been assigned to help me, I ended up waiting for about 25 minutes in the lobby. The receptionist was a complete airhead who had terrible communication skills, but the agent Margaret was even worse! We spent two and a half hours looking at two apartments that didn't even fit my criteria. She was unorganized and unprofessional. She was apparently having a disagreement with someone she worked with because she kept getting cell-phone calls, in which she would curse the person on the line and then leave the room. Meeting with her was a complete waste of my time, I will never even think of going back there. I ended up finding a place through the Apartment People. My experience there was a million times better and I suggest that service to anyone relocating who is not familiar with Chicago neighborhoods.
Pros: nice, expensive looking office
Cons: terrible customer service, agents dont actually listen to what you want
Our landlord has our apartment listed with Chicago Apartment Finders. On Sunday afternoon, they showed up at my door with a prospective tenant. After knocking and not getting an answer (my husband and I were both sick and were sleeping), they guy opened our door, which just happened to be unlocked, and walked in. I told him we're not showing today and slammed the door in his face. I called their office and complained. The manager said he'd be "disciplined." Our landlord did not give them to key to come and go as they please, so I don't understand why the guy felt he could just try turning the doorknob and let himself in. Nice way to run a sales business......
Cons: Disrepectful agents
I would stay away from this place. There are many other service that are much better and much more friendly. In the process of looking for an apartment, we looked at many of these services. This one was the worst. Chicago Apartment Finders did not return my calls for an appointment and then accused me of lying when we stopped in to look for an apartment. They would not accept us as a walk-in, even after their mistake. The manager who spoke to me was rude, and had no customer service skills. We ultimately rented from Apartment People because of their courteous service and knowledge.
If you would like to be accused of lying, treated poorly, and then turned away as a walk-in, this is your place. If not, try another apartment locating service.
Pros: location, none
Cons: Hmm.... so many.
I just felt I was very rushed and was also pressured after seeing three places because my agent had another client he wanted to go work with again. The apartments were very creepy and felt that I was being duped (I've seen a lot of apartments in chicago after living here for several years) so just had a very bad experience.