What is a Rent Zestimate

A Rent Zestimate® (pronounced Zest-ti-met, rhymes with estimate) is Zillow's estimated monthly rent price, computed using a proprietary formula. It is a starting point in determining the monthly rental price for a specific property. The Rent Zestimate is pulled from public property data and similar local properties listed for rent; there may be special features, location, and market conditions our algorithms have not taken into account. Variations in rental price can also occur because of negotiation factors, special incentives, and length of lease. We encourage renters and landlords to supplement Zillow's information by doing additional research such as: 

- Talk to a local real estate agent, or property manager that specializes in rentals
- Compare rental to other nearby apartment and homes for rent on Zillow
- Visit the rental (whenever possible)

What's the Rent Range?

The Rent Range, which is related to the Rent Zestimate, shows the high and low estimates an apartment or home could rent for (e.g. Rent Zestimate is $2,600, Rent Range is $2,000-$3,200). The Rent Range can vary in magnitude depending upon our historic ability to estimate our similar homes. A wider range indicates less data or more volatility in the data. A smaller range means we have lots of information to help compute the Rent Zestimate and Rent Range.

I am a landlord and my Rent Zestimate is too low - or too high. What gives?

As we said Rent Zestimate is a starting point in figuring the estimated price of a rental. For one thing, the amount of information and data we have affects the Rent Zestimate accuracy. If your home facts are incorrect, this will affect your Rent Zestimate. However, you can update your home facts, which may affext your Rent Zestimate.

How does the amount of data affect it?

It affects it a great deal. For example, the number of rental listings in a geographic area affects how much we know about prevailing rental prices in that area for apartments and homes. The more rental listings we have, the more data we have to work with and the more accurate the Rent Zestimate will be. Also, we use public data for house attributes, and some areas report more data than others. The more attributes we know about homes and apartments in an area (including yours), the better the Rent Zestimate. Remember that homeowners can also update their home facts if they feel they are incorrect, and that could affect the Rent Zestimate.

How is the Rent Zestimate computed?

Our statisticians compute this figure by taking public data and rental listing data and entering them into a formula, creating a "proprietary algorithm" -- big words for "secret formula."  Currently, Zillow has data on 100 million homes and we calculate a Rent Zestimate on 90 million of those homes. 

What's in this formula?

When our statisticians developed the model to determine rent prices, they explored how apartments and homes in certain areas were similar (i.e., number of bedrooms and baths, and a myriad of other details) and then looked at the relationships between actual rent prices and those home details. These relationships form a pattern, and they used that pattern to develop a model to estimate rental prices.

Why do I see Rent Zestimate prices for the past?

We not only have Rent Zestimates for apartments and homes that are now for rent, but we have gone back in time to generate historic Rent Zestimates as well. This allows you to see how an apartment or home's Rent Zestimate has changed in a chart that looks just like a stock table.&

How accurate is the Rent Zestimate overall?

Our accuracy depends on the home data we receive; see our Data Coverage and Rent Zestimate Accuracy table to see how accurate we are in your area. (You can refine the Rent Zestimate by updating the home facts for the apartment or home if they are outdated).

Who calculates the Rent Zestimate and how do they do it?

We have a team of statisticians who work all day - and some nights - with a huge amount of data to produce the Rent Zestimate. They live and breathe pricing models and tweak algorithms to get us as close as possible to the actual rent price.

Where does all the information come from? How can you know all this stuff?

It all comes from public data and similar local properties that are listed for rent. Zillow has done the legwork to gather all of this data from many sources and has created something unique - a Rent Zestimate of an apartment, home, condo or townhome.
 
 
 
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