Answer: it’s a secret.  And it’s their secret.  But they have more website visitors looking up homes and addresses than any other website.  Many, many, many times over.  In today’s tech-driven world, that has SIGNIFICANT value.  It’s why they ran so many years without turning a profit.  Now, they are beginning to reap what they have sowed.  Yes, even I look up info on Zillow…it’s a cool tool.

What does that mean for you?  Well, if you don’t understand how Zillow works, it can be confusing, frustrating and more.

#1 – Zillow does not have the value of your home.

Zillow has their value called the “Zestimate”.  It’s like saying New York doesn’t have pizza because it’s not deep dish like Chicago.  It’s both pizza…it’s a matter of taste.  Zillow created an algorithm to make up a value of an address based on their own information as well as public information.  They collected it, gave it a name and millions of people refer to it.

#2 – Zillow’s property tax, previous sale, square footage and other property information may not be correct.

Maybe it is.  Don’t worry.  Exactly none of Zillow’s information is used in making a lending decision.  Period.

#3 – Zillow is about marketing.

Zillow makes money by selling your click information to realtors and lenders.  Take a look at a home that is for sale and you will see a “Premier Agent”.  This may or may not be the agent that is actually listing the home for sale.  When you click for more information, your data is immediately transferred to the “Premier Agent”.  If you do not UNCHECK the box regarding mortgage approvals, you will also be contacted by the lender who is sharing the marketing bill with that agent.

#4 – Zillow has entered the reality and lending business.

Zillow recently acquired a broker and lender and are now offering to buy homes in certain markets with the simple click of a button.  If you agree to the terms of their offer, your home is sold – cash – done.  No matter if you use them for the realtor or lender side of the next deal.  Instant offers.  Yes, you might expect that the offer will be less than listing with a traditional agent and going through the process but on the other hand, click, done, sold sounds rather refreshing…  Regarding the lender side, no one has gone back to check pulse, done, closed…yet.

Bottom Line: if you have questions about Zillow, I’m here.  If you have questions about buying or selling your home, start here with me.  If you have questions about mortgages, of course…TMP.  As a lender, all parties to the transaction have to roll through my office or email or phone…you name it.  If you’re paying cash, I’m happy to help provide feedback on those whom I’ve experienced.  No one is the same but what you as a client deserve is unwavering…  THE BEST!!!

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