I KNOW Because I am SMARTER than Zillow!

Property Manager with Gibson Management Group, Ltd.

Rental prospects who have become familar with Zillow are now advising me that the rental rates on my homes for lease are TOO HIGH (NEVER that they are too low).


Although they should know that these Zestimates are rarely indicative of the actual RENTAL value of the property, they want to use it as an argument for me lowering the rent.

Unfortunately, Zillow does not have one thing that I have - I KNOW what the property is worth on the rental market * TODAY...at this time of the rental season to the # of rental prospects in the prospect pool.


Additionally, I KNOW what the last 2 (3, 4, 5) residents have actually PAID in RENT for the property so LOWERING the rent because of an artificially created rental guestimate is not going to work......and they don't get points for even trying.


Posted by

Wallace S. Gibson is a Certified Property Manager with over 50 years of property management experience and expertise.  She maintains a specialized property management business in Central Virginia serving Albemarle, Greene, Fluvanna and Louisa counties  


View our available Charlottesville, Albemarle and Lake Monticello rental homes online with photos and floor plans

"...to be a Virginian, either by Birth, Marriage, Adoption, or even on one's Mother's side, is an Introduction to any State in the Union, a Passport to any Foreign Country, and a Benediction from the Almighty God...." Anonymous



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Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

That's the same answer I give both buyers and sellers who want a price moved one way or another because of that zestimate.  I tell them it's basically a guess with no actual knowledge of the area to back it up.

Jul 21, 2014 05:54 AM #1
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA

I actually have the KNOWLEDGE and the PRIOR lease agreements to back up my rental price....

Jul 21, 2014 05:57 AM #2
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Wallace, experience usually trumps theory! We will use your numbers. Enjoy your day!

Jul 21, 2014 07:05 AM #3
Rob Thomas
Prestige Homes of The Tri Cities, Inc. CALL....423-341-6954 - Bristol, TN
Bristol TN-VA & Tri Cities Agent, ABR, GRI, e-Pro

I agree... Zillow is not the last word!

have a great day


Jul 21, 2014 07:53 AM #4
MichelleCherie Carr Crowe Just Call...408-252-8900
Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty - San Jose, CA
Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years

I always check Zillow's own "accuracy ratio" for the given market and share it with the prospect. For example, their perception of Zillow's Zestimates changes dramatically once they learn Zillow is only 20% accurate (meaning 20 percent too high or too low), in my Silicon Valley market.

Jul 21, 2014 02:35 PM #5
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA

I've actually had rental prospects send me the rental zestimate with their offer BEFORE they ever see the home or visit the area 

Jul 21, 2014 07:19 PM #6
Conrad Allen
Re/Max Professional Associates - Webster, MA
Webster, Ma, Realtor

HI Wallace.  Zillow is a joke.  I think Zillow itself claims to be wrong 6% of the time.

Jul 21, 2014 08:55 PM #7
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA

Conrad...I think your comment had a typo and should have been 96% of the time....I have added checking for a rental zestimate prior to preparing my property persentation just so I know what to market AGAINST!

Jul 21, 2014 08:58 PM #8
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Wallace, the rental and the sales numbers here are all over the map, but not at all on the target. 

Jul 22, 2014 12:45 AM #9
Claude Labbe
Real Living | At Home - Washington, DC
Realty for Your Busy Life

As everyone here has agreed,  and yes, buyers & sellers will argue with me as well, as they use Zillow to defend their arguments.

This past summer, I had an out of state owner argue that I was renting her place much too low, Zillow was telling her I should go much higher.  I had to work to gingerly tell her that Zillow didn't realize that the home in question hadn't been updated since the late 1950's and she was lucky she'd had the tenants she did paying her what she thought was too low.

Aug 23, 2014 03:15 PM #10
Charles Stallions Property Manager
Charles Stallions Real Estate Services - Pace, FL
Pensacola, Pace & Gulf Breeze Property Management

What ever happened to truth in advertising LOL go get em Wallace 

Aug 24, 2014 11:45 AM #11
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