Day 1 of "Zillow Group"

Services for Real Estate Pros with Zillow

Yesterday was a big day for Zillow and Trulia as we announced the completed acquisition of Trulia and formed Zillow Group, which houses a portfolio of the largest and most vibrant U.S. real estate and home-related brands on mobile and Web.

Trulia joins Zillow, HotPads and StreetEasy in Zillow Group’s consumer portfolio. Probably of immediate interest to many of you are our business brands; Diverse Solutions, Mortech, Postlets, Retsly, Market Leader and of course, ActiveRain.

I have a special fondness for the ActiveRain community as in the past (before it was purchased by MarketLeader/Trulia), I frequently posted here and learned much from engaging with this important community. From its entrepreneurial beginnings under its fearless founder Jonathan to ownership by Market Leader, Trulia and now Zillow Group, the true stewards of this content have always been all of you.

I know many of you are curious of what’s next as I know loyal members have witnessed a fair amount changes through multiple owners in a relatively short amount of time.  It’s the very early days of the Zillow Group and honestly, we are just starting to figure out the road ahead.  But it’s been quite clear to me for a long time that ActiveRain is an energetic and influential community of real estate professionals. It is a special place, and it deserves stewardship and investment. 


In advance, thanks for your support.  Your comments and suggestions here are always appreciated and you can bet I’ll read each and everyone. Also please feel free to email me at spencer at zillow dot com.

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Comments (168)

Sharon Alters
Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty - 904-673-2308 - Fleming Island, FL
Realtor - Homes for Sale Fleming Island FL

Spencer, welcome back to the Rain. We also have ventured into other social media but always come back to the Mother ship, the beginning of our blogging and social media endeavors. I hope that your return will be the same for you, and that the Zillow Group will do its part to preserve and improve this unique platorm that has given so much to the real estate community.  Zillow certainly doesn't need ActiveRain as an authority site, but it is a great place to check the pulse of the real estate community and for cutting edge information. We wish you the best in your new endeavor. Change is inevitable - we're glad the new owner is one of our own!

Feb 22, 2015 10:45 AM
Jeanne Dufort
Coldwell Banker Lake Country - Madison, GA
Madison and Lake Oconee GA

Spencer Rascoff  welcome back, and good luck with your ever-expanding SOI. Stay focused on providing a great consumer experience - on behalf of my sellers, I will always want to be aligned with the marketing venues that attract the most eyeballs!

Feb 22, 2015 01:09 PM
Cheryl Ritchie
RE/MAX Leading Edge - Huntingtown, MD
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566

Thanks for the explanation on these different brands. I did not realize some of these changes.

Feb 22, 2015 03:31 PM
Rose Mary Justice
Synergy Realty Pros - Dandridge, TN
Synergy Realty Pros

Awaiting the new and the changed.  Eager to see how this impacts us as realtors the most.

Feb 23, 2015 12:11 AM
Cynthia Larsen
Cotati, CA
Independent Broker In Sonoma County, CA

Welcome Spencer Rascoff I hope you value AR as much as we do. Looking forward to positive changes!

Feb 23, 2015 03:13 AM
Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
Charlemagne International Properties - Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

It will interesting to see how the AR and Zillow Group relationship impacts us a group and individuals.

Feb 23, 2015 05:18 AM
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Realty - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

IMO - Over the years, no matter what the industry, buyouts don't seem to help the customer. In the banking industry, buyouts caused services to be cut and fees increased.  In the airline industry, more of the same. There are less airlines and fees for everything.  Soon the airlines will have pay toilets on their jets!

The customer never wins.     

So don't wonder why some of us are skeptical. 

Please show me that my blogs are ranking again and that I am getting traffic like I did before the first buy out.  Then I will be a believer.




Feb 23, 2015 08:02 AM
Odaly Victorio
Team Victorious at Keller Williams Realty - Jupiter, FL
Marketing Expert

Welcome back Spencer Rascoff !  Thanks for initiating spirited conversation!


Feb 23, 2015 10:12 AM
Susan Isaacs, Realtor "The Momagent"
1313 14th St NW DC 20005 - Washington, DC
Compass | Partnering with DOMO

Michael Blue you make good points about where the benefits of our efforts go when we utilize the tools of one monopoly. Which idx are you using now, after dropping Diverse Solutions? Inman has a good article today on a new tool that tracks IDX results:

Feb 23, 2015 09:53 PM
Bob Publicover
Publicover Realty Group, inc - Stuart, FL
Thinking outside the box

Zillow, the digital "dartboard" for home estimates. Unfortunately, many prospective clients (sellers) rely on Zillow's site to plan the next chapter of their lives with the inaccurate value of a property. Many times it is far from a realistic value , too high or too low.

When I'm on a listing presentation and the seller has a printout from the web of the value, I then have to spend time justifying my suggested selling price.

If the Zillow estimate was very high, the clients thinks may valuation is too low and I'm trying to lowball the house  for a quick sale. If the Zillow estimate is too low the clients thinks my valuation is too high and the home will never sell. 

I suggest clients would be better off getting a value from the "Long Island Medium".

Sorry Zillow. I'm not here to my everyone feel warm and fuzzy.

Please tell me where I'm off on this.

Feb 24, 2015 12:08 AM
Troy Erickson AZ Realtor (602) 295-6807
HomeSmart - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

Spencer - As AR is under new ownership, we are all anxiously awaiting to see if any changes will occur. Hopefully AR will remain a great community where people in the real estate industry can blog, interact, and share ideas and business with each other.

Feb 24, 2015 02:47 AM
Susan Nealey
Coldwell Banker Realty - Annapolis, MD
No Pressure! Ever!

I, too, reserve judgement.  Not impressed with my interaction with Zillow as it stands so lets see what you bring to the table.

Feb 24, 2015 04:27 AM
Craig & Sue Guffin
Coldwell Banker Monsees Realty - Sedalia, MO
Sedalia Mo Real Estate

Thank you for the conversation Spencer Rascoff! We like many others have been in and out with AR all the time keeping our membership. We have just recently came back in with a strong commitment to it. We do hope that you and Zillow have done the same!

Feb 24, 2015 09:59 PM
Jeff Fisher
PureWest Real Estate - Whitefish, MT

Thanks for the note. It should be an interesting journey and I look forward to even more discussions with clients regarding those zestimates/guesstimates.

Feb 24, 2015 10:01 PM
Horace R. Barrow
Westhampton Beach, NY
"My clients are my BIGGEST deals!!"

Hello Spencer.


Welcome back and the update is appreciated.  There will always be change, so we'll just keep a positive mindset and see where things go.


Take care and be well.

Feb 25, 2015 04:47 AM
Steven Pahl
Keller Williams Tampa Properties - Tampa, FL
Real Estate Consultant Tampa, FL 813-319-6423

For your viewing enjoyment, written on April Fool's day 2013, only off by 22 months"

Feb 25, 2015 05:32 AM
Rudy Sedano
San Antonio, TX

 Bob Publicover, when listing a home, it is always a good idea to teach the homebuyer how we came up with the price anyway.  It is very easy to speak with potential clients regarding Zillow explaining the facts:  Zillow is just ONE tool and it is called a Zestimate not a Zappraisal...  

When we list a home, we pull comps and even compare features, etc which is part of what an appraiser does.  Zillow has algorithms etc, but in some states (like Texas), they cannot get the real sales values unless sellers / buyers agree to release the information or owners post it themselves.  Therefore, the Zestimates in our area is right at or near the county appraisal values <-- which is NOT a market value.  When we list a home, we are determining market value at a specific time.  That value changes.  In some areas it changes more than in others.  Therefore, it is pretty simple to explain the concepts to a potential seller.  Thing is, if we explain where our numbers came from to begin with and guide them to truth, then its easy to say "That why you need a Realtor"

Zillow is one tool in an arsenal to use for an agent selling homes and getting leads.  For clients (buyers mostly), it is one of the places they start their home search.  For sellers, they may look because it is cool, but that is where an agents marketing and skills comes into play.

The way a lot of agents think about Zillow is "in the box" thinking.  Stepping outside the box, I get a lot of clients.  I am not a Zillow fan-boy or anything as it is just one avenue of many.  Having the heart of a teacher is part of my business model and one that my clients like and remember.



Feb 25, 2015 11:53 PM
Jay Thompson
Zillow - Seattle, WA

Bob Publicover - Jay T. from Zillow Group here. Rudy Sedano provided good advice above. In addition, I'd suggest utilizing Zillow's own accuracy data in your discussion with sellers. This article explains where to find it and how to use it. It's quite powerful for those stubborn sellers that start a conversation with, "But Zillow says..." Being able to explain what the Zestimate is, and isn't, and how it's derived is also very helpful. That's also explained in the link I posted. 

Feb 26, 2015 08:41 AM
Bruce Hicks
Best Homes Hawaii - Honolulu, HI
Your Best Hawaii Realtor!

Congratulations on your position at Zillow Spencer Rascoff .  Your profile reflects a fine background.  Hopefully this comment does not generate dozens of calls from people representing the Zillow family.  AR has been a great place for me and a great educational experience, hopefully radical restrictions do not come into play.  Zillow needs to make closer friends with the 'average agents on the ground'.  Added up, they make a powerful force.   

Apr 27, 2015 12:01 PM
Diego Johnsom

Thanks for sharing such a good information.It is really knowledgeable info.
Keep sharing.

Dec 17, 2017 08:34 PM