Why People Love Zillow

I am always amazed about why people love Zillow. As a real estate professional, I understand Zillow appears to have the market cornered. They have a great website that’s easy to use and they seem to have all the answers. That’s what they have going for them.

But at the same time, it’s hard to believe their information is so inaccurate and yet people tend to believe everything they find on Zillow. I hear it day in and day out…

“Zillow says my house is worth $400,000. My natural thought is, “Has Zillow ever been to your house?”

Or the other one…

“How much is the house at 123 Main Street?” My response is “That house sold last year.”

Their natural response is, “No it didn’t, it’s on Zillow.”

And then it starts. When people tell me what they found on Zillow, I know I’m in big trouble trying to prove Zillow is wrong when I already know how much people love Zillow.

What is Zillow?

According to Wikipedia:

“Zillow is the leading real estate and rental marketplace dedicated to empowering consumers with data, inspiration and knowledge around the place they call home and connecting them with the best local professionals who can help.”

Actually, Zillow is a computized database that allows you to search for homes and estimates your home’s value. Neither of those is very accurate. But one thing is for sure, once you give them your information, they will sell it. That’s what they are very good at…getting you to give them your information.

The Zillow Zestimate

One of Zillow’s unique features is the Zillow Zestimate where consumers can see how much homes are worth. Zillow’s algorithms update property values three times a week, which comes from public data and from data submitted by users.

According to Zillow, most Zestimates are “within 10 percent of the selling price of the home.”

10%? On a $300,000 house, their Zestimate could be off $30,000 either way – too high or too low.

A Perfect Example of an Inaccurate Zestimate

In July of 2015, Zillow’s CEO, Spencer Rascoff, sold his house. The Zillow Zestimate said his house was worth $1,750,405. That alone would be a reason why people love Zillow. That’s like hiring an agent to sell your house that tells you they can sell your house for more than any other agent without any data to back it up. Prove it.

However, his house actually sold for $1.05 million which was 19% below his original list price. Does that make you believe the people at Zillow have all the answers?

The day after his house sold, the Zillow Zestimate once again said the house was worth $1,750,405 which is why Zillow should never be used to determine the market value of your home.

The Truth about Zillow

What Zillow is really good at is keeping consumers in their loop, giving you information about a home that might be available or could already be sold. When you give Zillow your name and contact info, they capture it and then sell it back to the agents that provided them with the listing in the first place.

Zillow has agents around the country that pay top dollar for those leads. (We are not those agents). They also pressure some Realtors into entering into costly advertising contracts just to protect and maintain their very own listing information. Buying leads is expensive and that’s why you will hear from an agent as soon as you enter your contact information. That agent just paid big bucks to try to nab you as a client.

The only SOLD information Zillow ever receives is when an agent goes in and updates their own listing. Zillow doesn’t want to have houses that are sold on their site so that’s why they don’t update it when a house sells. SOLD houses don’t attract buyers. Zillow wants every house to be available.

Zillow wants you to inquire about any house you see. Capturing your information is what they want to do so they can sell it back to the agents and any other businesses that want you as their customer as well. Selling your information is not in their Wikipedia description.

What Else Does Zillow Own?

These are other entities Zillow owns:

  1. Buyfolio
  2. Diverse Solutions
  3. dotloop
  4. Hotpads
  5. Mortech
  6. Mortgage Lenders of America
  7. Naked Apartments
  8. Postlets
  9. RentJuice
  10. Retsly
  11. StreetEasy
  12. Trulia

It seems as though, they want to acquire any real estate related company that has a huge database behind it.

Keller Williams had a contract with dotloop which helped them with the storage and signing of real estate documents online. When Zillow bought dotloop, Gary Keller ended that relationship. He didn’t want KW’s customer information to be readily available to Zillow. Good for him!

Want a Better Way to Search for Local Real Estate?

Whether you are looking at houses for the fun of it or for real, you don’t have to go to Zillow to do that. Zillow doesn’t have the most accurate information available. That’s why you’ll see a house that sold a year ago show up on Zillow as an active listing.

There are better ways to find out what’s for sale locally and discover the real value of your home versus the Zillow Zestimate without having your information sold. You can:

  • Search local homes for sale with our app through Heartland MLS
  • Receive your home’s current value based on recent activity in your neighborhood
  • Call or text (913) 515-3250 for a quick walk through of your house to see how it actually compares to other homes that have sold in your neighborhood
  • Contact us here and we’ll get right back to you! And we won’t hound you because we paid for the lead.:)

See All Overland Park Homes for Sale!

2020 Kansas City Spring Parade of Homes

The 2020 Kansas City Spring Parade of Homes starts Saturday, June 13th and runs through Sunday, June 28th. This year there are over 375 homes on tour throughout 6 different counties.

The parade is designed for home buyers to see the top new homes, learn about premier builders and visit different communities. The houses are open daily from 11:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. and the admission is FREE!

Start your 2020 Kansas City Spring Parade of Homes at any new home subdivision and pick up a guide there. Or you can download their mobile app on Apple or Google.

You DO need a Buyer’s Agent for New Construction

Please have a buyer’s agent represent you when building or buying a new home. The builder pays for you to be represented so it doesn’t cost you to have representation but can really cost you if you don’t. It’s your protection against the “what ifs.” The agents working at the subdivision work for the builders. They are looking out for their best interests. Without your own buyer representation, you don’t have anyone looking out for your best interests during the building or completion process.

COVID -19

Safety measures are in place to protect you while attending the event. Please keep the following guidelines in place:

  • if you are sick, please stay home
  • children are not urged to attend
  • maintain social distancing at all times
  • refrain from touching surfaces and handles in the homes
  • bring your own PPE – some homes will require face masks to enter
  • also bring your own hand sanitizer and use it before and after entering a home

Please adhere to each home’s protocol and posted instructions or it could cause a home to be closed from the public.

After the 2020 Kansas City Spring Parade of Homes

A couple of different things might happen after attending the parade. You may return home and decide you’d like to make some changes to your current home. You might decide you need to do some updating, rearranging or decluttering. Check out different options we offer here.

Or you may be inspired to build your dream home or buy a spec home. If you see a house you absolutely have to have while on the 2020 Kansas City Spring Parade of Homes or want to discuss your options with buying a new construction or spec home, call me at (913) 515-3250 or contact me here. I’m always here to help and answer any questions. Never, ever go down this road alone.

You may need to discuss selling your home. And how home staging helps your home sell faster and for thousands over asking price.

Remember

No matter what you do, always choose to work with an agent you like and is experienced at bringing you the results you want and deserve. The only difference between a great agent and one not so great – is your money.

What’s Your Home Worth?

Start by finding out the latest stats in your neighborhood. Don’t rely on the Zillow Zestimate. Here’s a quick tool that will research your subdivision and provide you with a report within minutes – direct from the local Multiple Listing Service. It’s fast and it’s FREE! Click here and insert your address.

Or you can always call or text (913) 515-3250 or contact us here for a quick, complimentary Market Evaluation and walk through.

Download our new app and tap into our local Heartland MLS system just like the Realtors do. It’s free for you with up to the minute accuracy. You’ll know about a house as soon as it comes on the market! Download the app here.

Search All Overland Park Homes for Sale!

6339 Dearborn Drive

BE IMPRESSED! This picture perfect, traditional 2 story home in desirable Milhaven has awesome curb appeal and gleaming hardwoods throughout. It’s lightly lived in and has been lovingly maintained by current owners. It has a newer updated kitchen, stainless steel appliances, granite countertops, roll-out shelves & 2 pantries for today’s busy cook. The upstairs baths have been updated with quartz countertops, Kohler faucets and fresh white tile. The bedrooms are spacious with lots of natural light. The family room opens up to a large patio and beautifully maintained backyard that’s perfect for entertaining. There are newer 6″ maintenance free gutters, water heater and storm windows. The inground sprinklers will keep your lawn green all summer!

See the virtual tour here!