I really need to ask this. Why is Zillow so far off on the values of the homes? You need local info!

The Zestimates are really off. They need to be more localized and closer to the real values of the homes. RPR is out and so much closer to our Real Values on our homes. Home owners are not liking this. 

Why are Zestimates so far off?

Joelle
  • January 25 2012 - Reading
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Answers (10)

Thank you Zillow Mod for finally deleting the offensive comment.  [you're welcome.  ZM]
  • January 26 2012
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[off topic.  Deleted by Zillow moderator]
  • January 26 2012
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Values are not 'why' off in my area.
  • January 26 2012
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[off topic removed by Zillow moderator]
  • January 26 2012
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Profile picture for Caveat Emptor
it depends on where you are. when you are in an area with actual sales data, home data and tax data, the zestiment is usually quite accurate.

there are places though that are poorly run or are run by sour pusses [deleted]. zillow is not all that accurate in these places and its not really zillow's fault
  • January 25 2012
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Profile picture for docsign
Joelle, I'm hearing the exact opposite of what you are saying. The Zillow estimates are inline or slightly higher than the actual values. Perhaps your clients and friends are still thinking values are stabilizing... they're actually dropping. Reality is difficult for most to accept.
  • January 25 2012
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
Here's a link to a definition of the Zestimate.  From comments from Zillow employees, one of the factors in the algorithm is the actual last sold price of the house as well as other local trends. 

One of the things that is very important to take into consideration when looking at Zestimates is the Value Range (unfortunately now further down the home details page).   Is Zillow's value range not inclusive of the owners' and agents' perception of value?


  • January 25 2012
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Profile picture for Caveat Emptor
I've created an AVM (or MVM since its not exactly automatic) that could be, perhaps, more accurate than zillow's.

take what you bought the home for
multiply it by 3% for every year you owned the home
reduce the price by 12% to 18% to 30% (for homes purchased 10+ years ago or since 2009, reduce to 2%, 8%, and 20%)


(eg 300k in 2004)
NTestimate 302,548
NT value range 258,273 to 324,686

(eg 300k in 2008)
NTestimate 268,810
NT value range 229,472 to 288,479

(eg 300k in 1988)
NTestimate 544,709
NT value range 473,660 to 580,233

the NTestimate is for diversion purposes only, it is not meant to be used as evidence in financial transactions, to obtain financing or ... fill in the blank
  • January 25 2012
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This is a common complaint we here as Realtor's from home owners and fellow agents.

 If Zestimates were done by taking the actual Sold Price and in relation to the areas it might be closer. We like to use local information and not national. When we as agents have to do a CMA we need to compare apples to apples. In most cases it is off on Zillow thousands of dollars. Good for buyers but sellers are furious.

I think Zillow is user friendly, we just need the estimates to be closer to what locally they are selling for. There are too many variables to use such general information to figure out the local value of a home. 
  • January 25 2012
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
Do you have some numbers for definition of "far off"?   Do they line up with Zillow's evaluation in their document on "Data Coverage and Zestimate Accuracy?"
  • January 25 2012
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