Naples, Florida Real Estate & Zillow

Real Estate Agent with John R. Wood Properties

There's no mystery that Zillow has had their fair share of challenges when attempting to accurately provide real estate estimates for Naples, Florida real estate.  But before anyone gets too excited, this is not a Zillow bashing post...just an update.  Besides, I'd like to give a special high five to that Zillow representative who admittedly said they had been faced with the challenge down here.  It was quite some time ago and they explained that they were "working on it" so I thought I would double check again to see what has improved especially since I recently wrote an offer with a very tech savvy buyer who tried to use Zillow as a point of reference.  After explaining what I knew she quickly changed direction and successfully put an Old Naples condo under contract....yaeee for her!

So back to the latest comparison.  What I did was pulled 3 closed sales today in our local MLS.  I cross referenced the sales price and then pulled the addresses up on Zillow.  Here's what I found:

8930 Bay Colony Drive #1504 - Salerno at Bay Colony - Listed for $2,295,000 sold by a fellow John R. Wood agent for $2,125,000 It took just under two months to go under contract...not bad market time!  So, I pulled up the address in Zillow where it said there were 26 matching properties for that address and then another link directly under it said 44 matching properties for that address.  When I click the first link a fast list of addresses show up and then disappear.  I tried to open the link in another window and it wouldn't load.  Hmmm.... I tried several times...holding my mouth differently each time...still no dice.  So I clicked on the second link.  Same results. I am happy to report that I did click on the building in the aerial shot and the building with the zestimates pulled up.  Zillow shows #1504 worth $2,511,000.  Was this a fire sale?  No, did the buyer get a great ridiculous deal.  Not in my opinion.  The neighborhood is doing very well and has not been in depreciating mode so I don't know why there's a difference of that magnitude.

Difference between reality and Zillow= $386,000 

2040 Sandpiper St. -  Royal Harbor - Listed for $979,000 Sold for $850,000.  It took just over 3 months for it to sell.  The Zestimate for this home is $1,466,500.  What I find curious is right under the Zestimate it shows $979,000 (what the house was listed for). This neighborhood has done well this year huge difference in market value to point to.

Difference between reality and Zillow = $616,500

 8463 Abbington Circle #1021 - Crescent at Pelican Bay - Listed for $699,000, Sold for $600,000.  It was on the market since last August with two price reductions.  17 days from 2nd price reduction in went under contract....and just as a was listed and sold by John R. Wood Inc. kidding!  Zillow says, $731,000...again, this neighborhood has remained the same in value for the last 24 months.

Difference between reality and Zillow = $131,000....we're getting closer.

From what I understand, Zillow is spot on in areas across the country and there's no doubt in my mind that Zillow Zestimates will get much better here in Naples down the road but as it stands today, your best resource to find out if you're overpaying as a buyer or under-listing as a seller is to contact a Smart Girl to help you know for sure!

Best Regard,  Shannon

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Best Regards!

Naples Real Estate

Shannon Lefevre, PA
Your Naples Smart Girl!

“The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of John R. Wood Realtors.”



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Abiud "Abi" Montes
EWM Realtors - Fort Lauderdale, FL

Hello Shannon

Thanks for the update about Zillow.

May 01, 2008 09:47 AM #1
Kelly Sibilsky
Licensed Through Referral Connection, LTD. - Lake Zurich, IL
Great job pointing out the difference between Zestimates and reality!
May 01, 2008 09:51 AM #2
Kristin Mason
New Market Title Agency - Independence, OH

In Ohio we are having similiar difficulties with Zillow, personal research shows anywhere from 18-35% lower on Zillow then listed sold or appraised.  But with all the attention zillow is getting many buyers and sellers are heading there first.  I teach agents in my CE classes to be fimiliar with zillow and have some comps as you ahve to counter their "zestimates"

Loved your blog!

May 01, 2008 11:23 AM #3
Bob Cumiskey
A1 Connection Realty, Inc. - Sun City Center, FL
US Army Retired, Your Sun City Center, Florida ~ Realtor
Shannon, I noticed the big difference in zillow also.  Same thing with Homegain.  I did notice with homegain that the comps they use are not equal.  In our community, we have an area of small condo's that are within a block of a more upscale neighborhood.  This does make it difficult to use their figures.  I use them and explain the reason for the higher pricing, then show them what it should be without them.
May 01, 2008 11:32 AM #4
Paul Slaybaugh
Realty Executives - Scottsdale, AZ
Scottsdale, AZ Real Estate
Tools such as Zestimates are really just for fun at this point, at least in my area.  There is just too much to throw in the hopper to come back with a reliable value.  Shoot, even after spending a full day on research, I won't quote price until seeing a property physically along with the closest competition.  It can be amusing to play with an online estimate to get a basic idea of a neighborhood, but even if it were a much more accurate source, who would honestly be 100% comfortable with a value spit out by a server thousands of miles away?  Not this cowboy.  I'd let a smart agent handle that.
May 01, 2008 11:45 AM #5
Neal Bloom
eXp Realty - Weston, FL
Realtor CRS-Weston FL Real Estate


I have tried to play around with Zillow zestimates....and from what I see they are not any way close to the figures I pull up in the MLS or even the tax records. I'm not sure how really accurate they are.

May 02, 2008 12:33 AM #6
Shannon Lefevre
John R. Wood Properties - Naples, FL
Shannon Lefevre, PA Your Naples Smart Girl

ABI:  You're welcome! :)

KELLY:  Thank you! :)

KRISTIN:  That's smart thinking.  We can't completely discount something that isn't accurate.  They've spent too much time and money to give up...they're going to get it right someday and we need to pay attention. :)

BOB:  Thanks for the insight on Homegain. I didn't know that. :)

PAUL:  I know exactly what you're talking about!  I think the subjectivity of real estate makes it "near" impossible to automate it.  :)

NEAL:  Wellllll according to my client I guess they are really really right where she lives in CT.  Obviously we don't have any CT agents who have verified this to be true on this post...sigh! :)

May 02, 2008 12:45 AM #7
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