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other than gumtree ...
haven't rented through an agent in my last 6 or so houses, gumtree has always been the answer apart from two of them where I just happened to see a sign in a house window.
I think I'm just avoiding the fact that there isn't many nice places to rent newcastle/gateshead at the moment
More of a short term/holiday option though https://www.airbnb.co.uk/
but are Spareroom.com and easyroommate.com still going? They were always pretty decent.