What happened to January? It flew by so quickly, and now we are approaching mid-February, celebrating the day of love, Valentine's Day.
Speaking of love, are you one of the many people who love to check out Zillow? Zillow is the most widely used home search tool, and is helpful in many ways. Zillow love abounds. Homeowners love to check out their home's value on Zillow. Homebuyers love to search for homes on Zillow and check out the Zestimates to see if the homes they are considering are a good deal. Did you know there's some things you probably don't know about Zillow? Let's take a peek.
Zestimates are frequently inaccurate. Wait! They have to be correct! After all, they are on Zillow and I believe in Zillow! In reality, Zestimates are generated by a computer program using public information from tax records. No one from Zillow has ever been in homes to know if a basement is finished, if the kitchen is upgraded, or if a bedroom has been added. Zillow doesn't know if the inside of a house is in great condition or trashed. These factors, among others, greatly influence the real value of homes.
Heck, the CEO of Zillow sold his home one year ago. His home sold for 40 percent less than the Zestimate for his own home! Ouch! Clearly Zestimates are not always accurate.
Another thing you may not know is all homes for sale do not appear on Zillow! What? But that's where most people search for homes! Real estate companies must pay hefty fees to have their listings appear on Zillow and some of the other search sites. If a company chooses not to pay the fees, their homes will not appear on Zillow. So, when buyers search on Zillow, they likely will not find all the homes that are really for sale.
And something elses you might not know about Zillow? Zillow isn’t updated every minute (This can apply to other real estate websites as well). When a home is entered into the multiple list, it can take a day or two to make it’s way to the other various websites. There are times when a buyer sees a home online, then asks their real estate agent if they can see the home. The agent then finds out the home is already under contract. Now the real estate agent must notify their buyer that home is not available, and that buyer loses out. The same thing happens when a home sells. It can take awhile for real estate websites to update the sale. A real estate agent can have a new buyer who found the home on a real estate website. The agent must inform them the house sold already and it wasn’t updated on the website right away.
So what's the best way to find out what a home is worth? Never rely on Zestimates and the various other automated valuations. They are nothing more than a mathematical formula that does not know the fine details of any home. Rely instead on a real person who knows the local market.
And what's the best way to find out all the homes for sale? Rely on a real person who has access to the complete up-to-the-minute list.
FInd out what else you don't know about Zillow here.
Ready to talk to a real person who knows the local market AND has access to the most up-to-date market activity? Melissa is your gal! Contact Melissa today for the real deal.