Guide to Searching for Housing on Craigslist

Image: Sardaka / CC BY 3.0

Craigslist is the most popular website in the United States for finding housing. On this website, landlords can advertise their apartments for free and people can search for ads when they need housing. Users then contact each other by email or phone. This is the best site for people to use to find private landlords and/or cheap units. However, when using Craigslist, it is very important to avoid scams, but these are easy to avoid as long as you know a few basic rules. See our “How to Avoid Scams When Searching for Housing post.

To find housing on Craigslist:

  1. Get to a computer with the internet and go to www.madison.craigslist.org
  2. Locate the header that says “Housing” and click on the link underneath that’s called “apts/housing”. This will take you to a list of apartments that are available to rent,
  3. In the search bar at the top, you can search for what you are looking for. For example, you could search “1-bedroom-apartment” to find what is available in your area.
  4. On the left side of the screen, there are more options for you to make sure you are only seeing the apartments that are appropriate for you. You can choose what zip code you would like to live in, a price range that you can afford, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms you need, the date you are available to move in, whether or not you have pets, and whether or not you want a furnished apartment. You do not have to fill this whole section out, but it might help you narrow down your search.
  5. Click on the place you want to see and it will take you to a page with a description of the apartment and hopefully some photos of the place
  6. On this page, you can click the “reply” button to find the email of the poster or find the phone number by clicking on “show contact info”.
  7. You can also use the map on the right to find out the area where the apartment is located. The circle represents the location of the apartment.

Please be aware:
If you are not sure if a housing listing is a scam or are concerned of housing legitimacy, please contact Housing Navigation Staff at HousingNavigation@ccmadison.org

Comment (1)

  • Alexander Malchow| October 9, 2019

    Thank you Housing Navigation! Where can I learn more?

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