5 top agencies to rent an apartment in Beijing ?

Looking for a real estate agency in Beijing, here is a proposal of a small ranking, what are the main actors on the complicated Real Estate Market in China ? This ranking is designed to be a description of the main agencies and on who can you rely if you are looking for an apartment in Beijing, not necessarily an objective ranking according to the number of customers or something that could be measured.

1) Wo ai wo Jia

Definitely one of the main real estate agencies, with a lot of offices all around the city. Beware this is the topical Chinese agency, with its qualities and flaws, you’d better speak a little bit of Chinese to communicate with them, or it could be complicated. The Chinese agancies are usually good at finding apartments but they may have difficulties in understanding the exectations of foreigners and might ake you lose some time visiting apartments that are not suited to your expectations. Another risk is that the agent will leave as soon the contract is signed and will be unreacheable in case of any trouble. The service standard of most agencies is quite poor, in a market that has been booming for years, it was unnecessary to put a stress on what you could do to help the customer. This is slowly changing and some agents can be really efficient.

2) Homelink

This agency has really a lot of offices in Beijing, and this is most likely that you’ll find one close to you. Their service standard is very close to Wo ai wo jia’s. The advantage of these agencies is that they have very precise databases for every city district they are settled in. The risk is that they make you visit the apartments for which the commission if the most interesting for them.

3) Scout Real Estate

For a foreigner, this type of agency in Beijing might be a very good choice. There is some agencies in Beijing specialized in relocation services to foreigners, and Scout REal Estate is one of them. This type of agencies is usually more specialized in expensive rentals, but still, they are interesting to contact because they have a good understanding of foreigners needs and expectations. They can help you understand where you are going to live, where are the schools, the best compounds, the amenities, since discoverinbg a new city might be difficult. Their fees are not more expansive than those of the Chinese agencies and the advantage is that the rent you’ll pay will be the market price. Scout Real Estate is service driven and you’ll have aftersales services available all along the rental period, if something soes wrong with the landlord or the management team, from the most simple ones such as the internet connection to more complicated rent issues.

4) Century XXI China

This establishment of the world agency in China is locally managed, and is quite successful. Their network is expanding all over China and especially in Beijing. The franchisor in China is a company called IFM Investments Ltd. This is a 100% Chinese real estate agency and you’d better know some Chinese language f you are interested in their services. All of these Chinese agencies are adapting themselves to a more complicated real estate market these past months, they are doing more and more sales operations and are less focused on renting.

5) Soufun

This is not a real estate agency, but you have to know the importance of this internet platform on which all the Chinese agancies are resent. This is an open architecture platform which is now the most successful real estate website in China, with ads, companies accounts, up to date information. Some other site exist such as Ganji. Of course, if you are repelled by the Chinese writing (there is no english version) you’ll prefer classified sites such as The Beijinger.

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