Why isn't Zillow Working For You - Header

We know Zillow is the mecca for property listings. Anyone from anywhere can see properties. But what is the end result of using Zillow? Jim Abbott from Abbott Reality Group says,”We demand … that any marketing plan produce tangible results, not meaningless hits in cyberspace.”

property searches: Number of searches

A report Generated from Summit Sotheby’s

This image is an example of how many views a property receives through Zillow. However, our focus shouldn’t be on the number of views, or meaningless hits in cyberspace. It should be the number of inquiries to view the property, or tangible results.

Here are a couple of questions you might want to ask yourself before using Zillow to sell your property in Park City.

    1. Is it converting potential buyers into actual buyers?
      • Yes, but not for your property.
        zillow agents

        A View of the Agents next to Properties

        Zillow’s Goal is to sell the agent and not the property. When you scroll through properties, there are lists of agents at every turn. They even highlight the premier agent, rather than the listing agent. If you want to know about the property, the listing agent would be the one to call. Not many people know that, and contact the agent that paid to be there. If you are not an agent and used the For Sale By Owner feature, agents are still listed as the ones to be contacted.

    2. How accurate is zestimate?
      • On average 82% of prices shown are within 20% of the actual sales price. Let’s do easy math. Let’s say the sale of my house was $1,000,000. If I would have used the Zestimate. My property would have had an 82% percent chance to be within 20% of the sale price. That means it would be priced at 800,000 or 1,200,000. Per Zillow website, they take a look at the past 5 years of market trends. Well, five years ago, the market was still in a slump. So our 82% chance to be within a 20% becomes a reality. You sell your home for 800,000 rather than the 1,000,000 of what it is truly worth.Now Let’s take a look at what happens when we price high. Let’s say (easy Math is awesome) the sale of my house was $1,000,000 once again. If I would have used the Zestimate, my property would have had an 82% percent chance to be within 20% of the sale price. That would be 1,200,000. Not bad, except when a property is overpriced, it stays longer on the market. If a property is repriced, on average, it will sell at 75% of the original listing price. We listed it at 1,200,000, and the sell price will be 900,000, on average. You might even ask, why wouldn’t we be able to sell it for $1,000,000? The buyer will have more leverage in the negotiation when making an offer because of how many days it has been on the market.
    3. How Accurate is Zillow?
      • The Actual Price. The price tag may or may not be the actual number. There are some properties that are not listed correctly. If the property with the same features is listed near your area, and is listed at the lower incorrect price tag. You are in competition with a property that is listed incorrectly.Closed Listings but yet still for sale on Zillow. It has happened. We have had clients call us to ask about a property from Zillow that was on the market a couple of years back, and it sold. Now you are in competition with properties that are not even for sale.

        Reviews of Real Estate Agents. There are three ways that agents can request reviews. Yes, you heard me correctly. The agent has to request the review. By raise of hands, how many of you ever requested a review from a client that wasn’t happy with you? Neither have I. If you have, you are a lot better then the rest of us.

        Premier Agent. You are in direct competition with Zillow Premier Agents. Like what was mentioned before, Zillow’s goal is to sell the agent and not the property. When agents are called, some of them will try to sell their listed properties. That is Zillow’s ultimate goal so Real Estate Agents will continue to invest.

Conclusion – The Action Plan

Zillow is a resource tool. Even though it is inaccurate most of the time, it can still be used as a tool.

  • Use Zestimate to refinance your home. Using the estimates from Zillow can help by showing the lower value of your home.
  • View Properties that are for sale or have sold in your neighborhood. Take a look at the features of each property. If you have some of those features, make sure they are present on the MLS.
  • If you are thinking about listing your property, look at the sold properties in your city or neighborhood with the same features. Make a list, and contact your local Real Estate Agent to find the price they sold to see if it is a good time to sell.