Zillow Says My House is in Pre Foreclosure...HELP

Real Estate Agent with Cedaredge Land Company

That was what I heard when I answered my phone last night. The caller wanted to know why Zillow would say that. I honestly don't know. I'm just a real estate broker in a rural area of Colorado. I don't have any control over what Zillow does, but of course I listened to the caller and offered some assistance. 

This caller doesn't even owe anything on the house. The situation is still being looked into, and I hope the caller will follow up with me. The caller didn't even know the Zillow site had listed him as being in pre foreclosure until a neighbor asked him about it. 

What a shock. I know I would be upset if someone told me my house was online as a pre foreclosure, and it wasn't. I did check the Zillow site...and as of the writing of this article, I'm not in pre foreclosure. Whew...what a relief. 

The inaccurate beast we call Zillow reared its ugly head again today. When it rains it pours. This is the second time in less than 24 hours. Strike two for Zillow...even though when playing by my rules, the site is already out. Out of touch and out of control with inaccurate information. 

This time a client reached out to me...Why does Zillow have the wrong sales price on our house? I truly don't know. I checked the MLS sales price. I checked the county records...the correct sales price was recorded. ALL OF THESE SOURCES ARE CORRECT...why can't Zillow seem to get it right.

Don't even get me started on zestimates. Which by the way aren't going to be correct no matter what algorithm is used if the beginning information isn't accurate...like sales prices. It's garbage in and garbage out. I can't even begin to tell you how many buyers and sellers contact me because of what they see on Zillow, and most of the time the site is wrong. 

Is this the type of company you want to work with when you go to buy or sell a house? I sure wouldn't trust that kind of investment and decision making to a company that can't seem to get it right. 

I called my MLS support staff hoping they might have some insight. I was given an email address. Darn straight I used that email address to start asking questions. Let's see what I learn. I'm on a soapbox. Stay tuned for chapter two. 

Comments (37)

Margaret Goss
@Properties - Winnetka, IL
Chicago's North Shore & Winnetka Real Estate

I get regular calls from Zillow sales people telling me about all the great leads they have for my area - sign up quick!  Jokesters.

Aug 28, 2019 07:45 AM
Dorte Engel
RE/MAX Leading Edge - Bowie, MD
ABC - Annapolis, Bowie, Crofton & rest of Maryland

Dear Debbie,

Maybe this means there will be a few consumers, who no longer take this site's information as gospel. They started something interesting, but as with all companies, excecution can be a problem. Especially when the focus changes to making as much money as possible off the people they were originally trying to serve.

Aug 28, 2019 07:59 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Debbie and good to see you in the rain.  I can not believe that zillow does something dumb again.  Figures.

Aug 28, 2019 08:47 AM
Doyle Davison
Hawaiian Beaches Hawaii - 714-968-6767 - Huntington Beach, CA
30 years as your Concierge services listing broker

Not just once in a while are they wrong... Zillow knows knothing about real estate... they are a marketing company that wants to take over real estate and eliminate the realtor. 

Aug 28, 2019 09:49 AM
L. Scott Ferguson
Ask4Ferguson - Your House-SOLD Name in Real Estate - West Palm Beach, FL
Sunny Florida Real Estate Professional

That is just crazy Debbie!  I used to hate Zillow, but now look at them as somewhat of an 'ally'.  I mean they are very often inaccurate and it gives me and my team a way of building trust and repoire with a prospect.


Here's something funny.  The CEO of Zillows (Spenser Rascoff) personal house actually sold for 40% less than the 'zestimate' That just made me laugh.


Thanks for the great content!



Aug 28, 2019 10:05 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

I feel bad for the people that are so influenced by fake news and don't realize that zillow is filled with it.

Aug 28, 2019 10:14 AM
Mike Frazier
Carousel Realty of Dyer County - Dyersburg, TN
Northwest Tennessee Realtor

So many swear on Zillow being great but as a Realtor I believe they are terrible.

Aug 28, 2019 10:28 AM
Neal Bloom
Brokered by eXp Realty LLC - Weston, FL
Realtor CRS-Weston FL Real Estate

Sounds oh so familiar, I won't say anything else as I have a collegue who is on the Zillow war path.

Aug 28, 2019 11:46 AM
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Hi Debbie Laity -  good you see you posting.  This is more "you can't make this stuff up"  from Zillow.

Aug 28, 2019 01:09 PM
Anna "Banana" Kruchten
HomeSmart Real Estate - Phoenix, AZ

Hello Missy Debbie Laity so good to see you! I can see your hard at work in CO. Dealing with this crazy Z stuff is so common these days......just shaking my head.

Aug 28, 2019 03:54 PM
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

Hi, Michael Jacobs ...thanks for stopping by. I wish we could stop zillow, but I believe that beast is here to stay. 

Aug 28, 2019 04:15 PM
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

Hi, Ron and Alexandra Seigel ...the situation is still being looked into. I will stay after zillow. Business is good and strong. Hope you are experiencing the same. 

Aug 28, 2019 04:16 PM
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

Hi, Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR ...thanks for stopping by my post. It is a big coincidence this happened with two people in less than one day. I am doing my best to educate the public about the online property data sites and their inaccuracies. 

Aug 28, 2019 04:18 PM
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

Hi, Michelle Carr Crowe,Altas Just Call...408-252-8900! ...I am doing my best to educate the public, and we all need to do the same. Public education about the misinformation on property data websites will go a long way. 

Aug 28, 2019 04:20 PM
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

No one ever calls me to complain about Zillow. Maybe they realize that our Team, which does over 100 transactions per year, does not control, influence or understand what Zillow does.

We just wonder why so many people take the Z information as gospel.

Aug 28, 2019 06:47 PM
Marney Kirk
Cummings & Co. Realtors - Towson, MD
Towson, Maryland Real Estate

Wow, Debbie, how terrible for that person who has their home listed as pre-forclosure but isn't in it. People check those things, and do believe them - and make judgements on those listed. I hope they fix it - and quickly.

Aug 29, 2019 05:43 AM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

what I truly love is that sellers dont understand that we have NOTHING to do with what goes on Zillow and what it says! 

Aug 29, 2019 06:11 AM
Debb Janes
Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
Put My Love of Nature At Work for You

I just can't believe how many people still believe Zillow and Zestimates - and think the agents who are linked to Zillow are the best in the biz. Frustrating. D

Aug 31, 2019 08:38 AM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
Savvy + Company (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC

Fake News & Z go hand-in-hand, don't they, Debbie?!

SO glad to see you back here posting. Happy Sunday!

Sep 08, 2019 11:52 AM
Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor®
Carmel by the Sea, CA
Rothwell Realty Inc. CA#01968433 Carmel-by-the-Sea

Hi Debbie: What a coincidence that you started to post again here on AR the same day I came back here too.  It's been awhile. As to Zillow, people take it as gospel. And they access it just because it comes up first in search engines all the time. 

Sep 08, 2019 03:52 PM