In an industry first, rental search site Rent.com.au has added NBN status to its full listings, making it much easier to find a property with access to super-fast broadband. With a click of a button, prospective renters can see whether a house or apartment currently has access to the NBN - as well as the type of technology being used. The number of connected homes is higher than you might think.
Rent.com.au's latest feature allows customers to filter their results based on NBN availability - much like the similar 'Walk Score' tool, which shows the property's proximity to local amenities. Crucially, all rental listings also show the type of NBN technology that is being used in each property.
The site presents the data in two levels of detail. First, a summary of basic NBN information is listed when a renter searches for properties in their chosen suburb ('available', 'scheduled' or 'unknown').
A second level of detail is then displayed when the customer clicks on an individual property listing, including the broad technology type (Fixed Line, Wireless or Satellite) or the scheduled completion date if the NBN isn't up and running yet.
All information is based on publicly available data from NBN Co. The main benefit is having all the information in one place without having to visit the cumbersome NBN website.
Rent.com.au's CEO Greg Bader said the feature was added is in response to demand from users and will help to make the rental search and application process easier for renters.
"Currently some agents and landlords show NBN information but there was a lack of consistency across the industry and hence our listings," Bader explained. "This solves that problem and makes things easier for renters, agents and landlords."
According to Rent.com.au's own figures, more than 80,000 properties on its site have the NBN available right now. This works out to approximately one-third of active listings. This number is expected to hit around half of all listings by the end of 2017.
There are many things to consider when choosing a home to rent. But for many of us, fast and reliable internet access is near the top of the list. We fully expect other rental property sites - both large and small - to follow in Rent.com.au's footsteps very soon.