Is Zillow Posting Your Old Listings?

By
Real Estate Agent with KW Bay Area Estates CA BRE# 00993009

Is Zillow Posting Your Old Listings?

Is Zillow Posting Your Old Listings?

 

I received a call from an agent yesterday saying if I had a listing on Bottle Brush Street that he saw on Zillow.  Now I am getting calls from buyers.  This was a listing I sold a year ago!  Is this what Zillow is doing now?  I am not a big fan of them to begin with because they have old listings.  If we agents did that, we could get fined by our board or it can be an issue with our state laws.  When they switch and bait consumers, it is apparently OK. 

Upset faceIs Zillow Posting your old listings?  Apparently.  Now I have received a couple calls from buyers, agents, and now the actual seller apparently found out about this and is calling me.  Amazing, and now I have to do something, waste my time, and clean up the mess. 

We need to do something about the re-posts and switch and bait techniques.  Is this a desperate action to get more leads in a inventory starved market like Silicon Valley?  New marketing strategy to market what has been sold in today's "sellers market?"  the average consumer has no clue what is happening and of course we know what is posted in cyberspace is true, right?  I am frustrated so I thought I'd at least post this and vent.    I know Zillow is doing well, probably at our expense.  And, Zillow is not the only site doing this.

So what do I want to accomplish here?  Vent, start some creative solutions, not ready to be the poster child.  Not allow Zillow or other companies to do this is first issue.  Likely the switch and bait tactics are a bigger fish to fry.  I am willing to communicate my experiences here for the good of the all. and I suspect I am not the only one.   Thanks for letting me vent.

Is Zillow Posting Your Old Listings?  Just saying...  I would appreciate your suggestions or comments.   

 

 

 

Posted by

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James K. Endo, CDRE# 00993009

Broker, ABR, CDPE, CPRES, CRS, IMSD, SRES

Keller Williams Los Gatos Estates

16185 Los Gatos Blvd, Los Gatos, CA  95032

Email:  james@jamesendo.com     Direct:  408-560-9021

www.JamesEndo.com     www.homesearchvalues.com 

 

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Comments (42)

Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

James, maybe it is time for agents to stop purchasing ads and leads on these sites. Without financial support, they won't last long. Sometimes we are our own worse enemy.

Apr 25, 2013 10:19 PM
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

We all use multiple syndication companies and our MLS systems syndicate also. In fact our MLS goes to about 400 different places at last count, but it is controlled by the brokers that allows opt out. So if I create multimedia on listingstoleads.com, and a couple of others I use, unless I delete aftyer the listing has been sold, expired, or whatever, it will show up in a lot of places for a long time. I am not disagreeing that this is a mess but as agents we do have some responsibility for our own marketing casuing this. 

Apr 25, 2013 10:21 PM
Doug Rogers
Bayou Properties - Alexandria, LA
Your Alexandria Louisiana Agent

Echoing comments from above...Try reaching out to Brad from Zillow. In the past he has chimed in and made a good faith effort to fix problems.

Apr 25, 2013 10:42 PM
Brian Schulman
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Lancaster PA - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster County PA RealEstate Expert 717-951-5552

We all have to make sure that we notify these agglomerator websites when our listings have been sold.  Sometimes they don't pick up the information.

Apr 25, 2013 10:55 PM
Fernando Herboso - Broker for Maxus Realty Group
Maxus Realty Group - Broker 301-246-0001 - Gaithersburg, MD
301-246-0001 Serving Maryland, DC and Northern VA

Automatic content for them. .

lets put ALL the listings out there and let the public figure out. .as long as we are #1 on Google

Apr 25, 2013 11:22 PM
Mark Geis
Coldwell Banker, Mulleady, Inc. Realtors - Eagle River, WI

I honestly think this is their way of getting more link-backs, thus higher rankings in the search engines.  

If this could be proven, I think a serious class-action lawsuit could be developed against them.  They are costing us millions of hours in labor (combined) for their own malicious gain.  

Another thing we could do is stop offering them the feeds.  

Apr 25, 2013 11:42 PM
Charita Cadenhead
eXp Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)

It's an ongoing saga. It's bad enough our MLS's are rife with inaccurate data, we have to worry about sites like Trulia and Zillow or TruLo as I like to call them.

Apr 25, 2013 11:57 PM
Julie Brown
Steffes Group, Inc. - Mount Pleasant, IA
Broker-Associate, Mt. Pleasant, Iowa

James, I am in a small market and we have a limited number of homes available for sale at any given point of time.  Often times buyers will call and say "I saw a new house for sale on Zillow"  it is always one that has closed and is no longer available.  I suggest they search our local MLS, company website, or Realtor.com.

Apr 26, 2013 12:01 AM
Helen and Larry Prier- Re-Max Gateway - Residential Real Estate
RE-MAX Gateway- Residential Real Estate Sales - Anacortes, WA
Anacortes & surrounding Skagit & Island Counties

I can't imagine how their search engines could be this bad. What does the word "SOLD" mean to them. I don't see any benefit they would derive from this behaviour either. A mystery and a pain if it happens to you.

Apr 26, 2013 12:17 AM
Andrew Martin
REMAX Accord - San Ramon, CA

Zillow sends me a note about every six weeks telling me that my listing (which sold in October) is about to expire and if I want to renew it or not. I always hit YES. I do this for two reasons. One - to get free advertising and to continue to get calls from buyers who I can convert over to my website and my MLS search, and Two, to continue to show people how bad and innacurate the data is on Zillow and Trulia. I love to muck up the data because I think it has to get much worse, for the public to get tired of it and decide to abandon their searches there.

Apr 26, 2013 01:30 AM
James Endo
KW Bay Area Estates - Los Gatos, CA
ABR, CPRES, CRS, SRES... Since 1987!

WOW, I guess I struck a nerve!!!  I came back from 1/2 day off to golf and thank you for your comments!!!  I agree with Joe, Bryan and Mark above that we must remove our listings once they sale on other sites and it obviously benefits companies like them.  I hallucinate that the popular sites pick up feeds from many public sites to fatten up their inventory for lead generation at agent's expense.  If you as an agent did this, it would be a penalty.  It wastes buyer, seller and agents time and in my Silicon Valley Super Fast Seller's Market, it can be a price that is no longer available, so it makes it more attractive to desperate buyers wanting to believe anything they see.  It's like that commercial from Farmer's Insurance  "How do you know it's true?  I saw it on the internet!"  http://youtu.be/v_CgPsGY5Mw  Consumers don't realize that the popular site's model is often abusing this apparent inclination.   I have made a complaint to my local and state boards.   I am grateful for all your comments and learning from and hope you are too.

Apr 26, 2013 02:33 AM
Jason Anderson
Mercury Properties - Rio Rancho, NM
Realtor®

The old listings are only the beginning! The "zestimates" are so far off base in most areas it is not even funny. How can they get a true estimate in states that are non-disclosure? Then, Zillow tries to get you to pay big money to be listed "at the top" of their pages. I know a few people who tried advertising on zillow and it did not work for any of them.

Bottom line for zillow and trulia is their "bottom line". It seems that they both want to dominate web searches to generate more advertising dollars.

Apr 26, 2013 02:37 AM
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

You can go to the bottom of the page of any listing and see where the data to them originated.  Recently had the very same thing happen to me and another local agent had actually put the sold listing on their website was how it got to zillow in the first place.  Zillow accepts feeds... they don't post listings.  I contacted zillow, sent them the data from the MLS that I sold the house and the email where my buyer client emailed me to ask why his house was again on zillow and they took it down within 24 hours.  

Apr 26, 2013 03:12 AM
James Endo
KW Bay Area Estates - Los Gatos, CA
ABR, CPRES, CRS, SRES... Since 1987!

Jason, you are right, old listings, "zestimates" some poor and inaccurate services provided by some of these free and popular site... let alone potential negligence to consumers and agents.  I do not see the originating source Tammy but will look again.

Apr 26, 2013 03:23 AM
Tim Maitski
Atlanta Communities Real Estate Brokerage - Atlanta, GA
Truth, Excellence and a Good Deal

James,  It would be great if you made this post open to the public.  I ran into the same situation.  I'd love to link to this post so buyers will see that it's not just a one off problem.

Apr 26, 2013 07:59 AM
James Endo
KW Bay Area Estates - Los Gatos, CA
ABR, CPRES, CRS, SRES... Since 1987!

Tim, I wanted to share with other agents and I can see that this would provide value to the public.  Thanks for your encouragement and glad to share. 

Apr 26, 2013 08:39 AM
Andrew Martin
REMAX Accord - San Ramon, CA

When I get an e-mail from a buyer looking at my listings on trulia I always send something like this to them:

 

The home on xxxxxx is already sold.  Do yourself a big favor and dont look at sites like Trulia or Zillow for homes. The info is out of date and for the most part inaccurate.

If you want a current 100% accurate search of the MLS with all homes for sale on it, give me your real e-mail and Ill set you up with a search of homes on the MLS. 

We dont put our listing on Trulia or Zillow and I dont personally use or like those sites. So, you wont see the true picture. 

Let me know if you want to save time and look for a home the right way.

Andrew

 

Most of the people respond that they want me to add them to my MLS drip.

 

I got tired of fighting the crap on those sites, so now I just keep posting my old listing there and reap the benefits. Again, it has to get worse to get better. People will soon see the realty of sorting through old listings. Waste of time.

 

Apr 26, 2013 12:09 PM
Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty
Bucci Realty, Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Eighteen Years Experience in Brevard County

That is all it comes down to...a third party making money off of someone else's free labor.

Apr 27, 2013 11:13 PM
Pat & Steve Pribisko
Keller Williams Greater Cleveland West - Westlake, OH

James, Zillow does several things that I don't like.  I guess I need to check my sold listings to see if they are still on Zillow.

Apr 27, 2013 11:32 PM
James Endo
KW Bay Area Estates - Los Gatos, CA
ABR, CPRES, CRS, SRES... Since 1987!

Andrew, great message for inquiries or clients.  In fact, this needs to be a part of our presentations with leads, both buyers and sellers, and set the stage. 
Gary, I agree.

 

Apr 29, 2013 01:56 AM