I want to start by saying when I link to one of my listings I tend to link to either an ActiveRain post, my Garden State Multiple Listing property info, more recently RealBird Single Property Website and once in a while I will link to my listing on Trulia. I've never used Zillow to link to my listings. I never had a reason NOT to link to Zillow until today.
One of my Facebook Local Real Estate Agent friends posted his open house information and with the link to Zillow for the property information. From his Facebook post it looked like a nice house for a good price and I could have opened my GSMLS window to view the property but I clicked on the Zillow link instead. That's when I realized why I don't use Zillow to link to my listings.....
Right under the list price of $430,000 was Zillow's Zestimate of $390,500 which is $39,500 LESS than the list price.
Albeit that $39,500 less isn't as bad or as low as other Zestimates that I've experienced seeing on Zillow. However, the point I am trying to make here is that regardless of many agents' opinions that Zestimates are inaccurate, we also know that buyers listen to everyone else but their buyer's agent (after all what do we know??) but when you direct a potential buyer to your llisting on Zillow, the first thing they see when they click is the For Sale price AND the Zestimate and if the Zestimate is less than the list price.......????
Buyers will automatically assume that the house isn't worth the list price and not onlybecause their parents, neighbors, mailman and hairdresser told them but because YOU directed them to a site which in their eyes proves its not worth the list price. Now I am fully familiar with the term "Zestimate" and its intended meaning from Zillow.com:
The Zestimate (pronounced ZEST-ti-met, rhymes with estimate) home valuation is Zillow's estimated market value, computed using a proprietary formula. It is not an appraisal. It is a starting point in determining a home's value. The Zestimate is pulled from data; your real estate agent or appraiser physically inspects the home and takes special features, location, and market conditions into account. Variations in price also occur because of negotiating factors, closing costs, and timing of closing. We encourage buyers, sellers, and homeowners to supplement Zillow's information by doing other research such as:
* Getting a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) from a real estate agent
* Getting an appraisal from a professional appraiser
* Visiting the house (whenever possible)
* Creating your own estimate using the My Estimator home valuation tool
Many buyers do not read the definition I posted above and do not realize its intent, meaning or purpose but will instead assume the house is overpriced.
So that is my reason why I don't use Zillow to link my listings (I syndicate my listings to Zillow.com but I don't directly link to my listings on Zillow). Do you? What are you thoughts? Do you think the effect is the same (list price vs. Zestimate) whether you directly link to a listing or even if a potential buyer finds your listing themself?