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Defend Your Startup: Zumper

 San Francisco is full of startups, so what makes Zumper worth the investment?

Apartment hunting is the pits: all that spam, fake enthusiasm, and clicking back and forth on Craigslist.

Enter Zumper, a new rental site that aims to supplant Craigslist with significantly better data and what it calls a much more efficient ecosystem. But is it really better than the site we know and loathe? Ask CEO Anthemos Georgiades.

How do you compete with Craigslist’s zillion new posts a day?

Renters know that anything they see on our site will be accurate and available because we vet the vast majority of our landlords. Also, Zumper is incredibly easy to navigate. All the information comes up on one page, so you don’t have to keep opening new pages like you do on Craigslist.

What’s in it for landlords, since they have to go through an approval process to list on your site?

Renters have the option to share a few financial details, like salary and credit score, which means that the landlord knows ahead of time that applicants can afford the rent.

How are your listings, which are overlaid on a map, different from PadMapper’s?

You’re only as good as the data you put in, and PadMapper uses Craigslist data. Where are all the adjectives— cozy, bright, gorgeous? We strip out the short descriptions because we found that renters don’t believe them.

What’s with the crazy name?

It’s from a British real estate word. It’s a niche thing.

Originally published in the June 2013 issue of San Francisco.

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