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Why is Zillow not updated more often? Finding houses sold months ago that are still listed.

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September 24 2011 - Redwood City
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Profile picture for sunnyview
Most agents will send you listings from the MLS, this post is not about that. It is about a consumers frustration with old listings. You are right Zillow gets listing from agents. Agents and Zillow work together to make listings available to consumers and agents need to notify Zillow when properties are off the market.

Mistakes happen with as many listings as both agents and Zillow handle. The goal should be more accuracy for the good of everyone.
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September 25 2011
Profile picture for wetdawgs
@Laura:

An agent who is on top of technology learns that MLS is only part of the advertising picture, and learns how to manage listings that range far and beyond MLS.  Zillow gets feeds from thousands of sources, of which postlets is only one.   While an agent is fined if they don't remove from the MLS, if their advertising has gone beyond the MLS (as it should), shouldn't they be responsible outside that arena also?   (As I consumer, I do judge their management of the entire advertising picture, not just the MLS)

I see you've recently become a Premier Agent.   Did they tell you about Zillow Academy?  There are a number of very useful courses.
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September 25 2011
Hi Wetdog,

It's not the Realtors that do not update, nor is is zillow. The problem is where Zillow feeds from. Zillow does not feed from the MLS. The MLS is the one and only single source. Agents have to update their listings or they get fined. Zillow is a great site but since it feeds from postlets.com the information can often be outdated to do an agent or an average joe not updating the postlet. To save yourself from any frustration the best way to go is with a Realtor sending you listings.  Our firm does automated notification emails straight from the MLS for free. You don't even have to talk to us unless you want information on a property. Are you searching in Hampton Roads? Would you like me to set up a notification for you? Send me your information on what you are looking for at [E-mail deleted by Zillow moderator. Please refer to our Good Neighbor Policy for guidelines]

Smiles ...
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September 25 2011
Zillow and other sites offer good content, but to get the most accurate information, ask your agent to link you to the MLS so you have real time updates and the most up to date content.

Regards,

Dave Tapper
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September 25 2011
Profile picture for sunnyview
Realtors handle a lot of different feeds. Their local associations make sure that they take the listing off the MLS/realtor.com, but do not follow up on all the other sites. That responsibility falls back to the Realtor and so sometimes listings on other sites fall through the cracks.
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September 24 2011
@rconnoll Redfin is a brokerage site. Their info comes from the MLS and other sources. Typically an agents site (if it has MLS access) will be able to provide you with real time info.... and it's usually accurate.

My site has the same. Redfin is probably one of the best sites out there for real, usable info. The rest of these (zillow, trulia, homegain) are plagued with bad or untimely info.

Wish you the best of luck!

David
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September 24 2011
Profile picture for rconnoll
Thanks to all for your responses. I agree that one should use numerous search tools when buying a home. Oddly, redfin.com was the way I discovered these houses were already sold. Why would realtors be better about updating one search site over another? It makes me think it is not just the realtor here??
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September 24 2011
Profile picture for wetdawgs
@David:

Thank you for posting.  It is very valuable for consumers to have an opportunity to read an agent's posts to assess their knowledge of the industry, technology, interaction with others and many other aspects, which may contribute to a successful interaction. Thanks

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September 24 2011
As long as your happy WetDawgs. Have a good one!
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September 24 2011
Profile picture for wetdawgs
David: Please don't put words in my mouth.  I don't agree with your statement.

My words: There is no search tools for listings that is perfect.  Many sites together add more power than a single site.

Of course, please note the moderator deleted your link to your site.
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September 24 2011
Well, we can certainly agree on something...

There are much better tools available for conducting research and homes searches than Zillow, whatever the reason you'd like to attribute it to.
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September 24 2011
Profile picture for wetdawgs
Interestingly, not all listings make it to Zillow. 

I do have a strong opinion that agents have a lot of responsibilities and a number are not keeping up with the newer technology.  (Your statements are a good example)  It is a pity.  (Fortunately there are a number of great ones out there on top of the newer technologies also).

I am a strong believer in consumer's rights and empowerment.  Real estate is one of the areas where more if it is needed.
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September 24 2011
Guess I've just had a completely different experience.

You're right, when agents operate extra, independent feeds, they have to maintain them. But very few agents do this because a) they are too lazy or b) they cost money.

Oddly enough, ALL listings manage to make it into Zillow whether an agent posts to an extra listing or not. How do you suppose that happens?

You certainly do have strong opinions for someone un-associated with zillow and no professional involvement in the real estate industry.
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September 24 2011
Profile picture for wetdawgs
Sorry David, but you are not correct. 

Zillow is syndicated with < 1% of the MLSs.   Most agents (or their brokerages) put their listings out on a number of feeds that do syndicate with places like Zillow.   Some use postlets, vflyer, listhub and others.  Some have direct feeds from their brokerage.   It is the agent's responsibility to make sure ALL feeds have had the information removed.   It is not sufficient to just remove it from the MLS.   (That was true 20 years ago, but is no longer true.)

It is agents who do not know how the system works who are contributing to the mess of expired listings littering the internet.  Please study up how feeds work so you can contribute to the solution rather than be part of the problem.

What does Zillow get from public records?  When a property is sold it gets that information as it filters through the system, as well as the data on the house  But, county records saying a house is sold does NOT cancel a listing.  Cancelling the listing requires action from the agent and/or his/her brokerage.
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September 24 2011
Sorry wetdawgs, but that's just not the case.

Zillow is updated by public records feeds. Realtors have absolutely nothing to do with public records or the speed at which they are or aren't updated. The people who work in city and county records offices deal with this, and I imagine they have procedures to go through to validate record changes when they come in.

Realtor ONLY handle whats on the local MLS (which can be piped into other websites). I'm pretty sure that zillow gets MLS feeds too, but this is not where the delay comes from. I know this because the "MLS" is a specific company in each location. This company has very strict information timeliness requirements. If a Realtor were to fail to report a property as closed for more than 2 days, they are fined heavily and sometimes every threatened with termination of MLS services. The MLS being the most critical tool used by a Realtor... you can imagine that we don't want to screw that up too often, right?

Just as with mis-reported sqftage, sales details are often delayed, and the delay occurs after the recording process of a sale. At that point, it's no longer in our tiny Realtor hands. It's up to the public offices to make the correct changes to the public record off of which Zillow feeds.
 
Use my website to get free, real time MLS info if you like at.  [website deleted by Zillow moderator.  Please refer to our Good Neighbor Policy for posting guidelines]
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September 24 2011
some of the agents don,t update their listing in order to get more leads by keeping them Available on MLS. Which is very frustrating for the other agents who follow the rules as well as the buyers. These agents should be reported to the board.
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September 24 2011
Profile picture for wetdawgs
Feeds to Zillow are updated every 24 h, but the problem is some agents don't update all their feeds.  Zillow is only as accurate as the feeds.   So, the question is why are agents letting expired listings hang out on the internet?
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September 24 2011
 
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