Can I trust Zillow estimates?

Can I trust Zillow to figure out the market value of my property in Riverwood?

Zillow is a billion-dollar website that provides computerized estimates which purport to calculate the value of every home in the United States. Zillow tries to achieve this this task by using a complicated program that compares factors which alter home values, but here's a story I have heard from home sellers in Northern Virginia:

Is Zillow accurate?
Many consumers have serious doubts about the accuracy of Zillow home value estimates.

Our home was recently appraised for 650K. Zillow estimates the value at 521K. The estimate makes us one of the lowest priced homes in the subdivision. We have all upgrades in our home and it is the largest of the homes that were originally built in this subdivision. It was appraised at 750K before 2009. Our home has a basement. Neighbors do not have basement on one side and you appraised higher. Really? -- James E. - Fort Hunt

If you Google the web for the phrase "Can I trust Zillow?" or "Can I trust Z-Estimates" you'll discover many testimonials by upset homeowners and leery home shoppers who have discovered the hard way just out inaccurate Zillow's pricing can be. Many people in Riverwood say that Zillow's valuations have a margin of error of around 20%. Even if we assume the margin of error is only 10%, in Northern Virginia that means a "z-estimate" is only within $50,000 of the actual value. If the margin of error is an impressive 5% that means that a z-estimate is only within $25,000 of the asking price.

Yet Zillow (for now) remains popular with some real estate shoppers. Home sellers and property purchasers should know that there is not a single community in Riverwood where either a bank or tax collector uses Internet for tax assessment or appraisals. Our professional advice is to take estimates from any website at arm’s length. Putting too much trust into a website can cause a lot of disappointment.

Contact Nesbitt Realty today for a free comparative market analysis of your property's worth. We promise that a computer won't set the market value. Instead, your friendly neighborhood Nesbitt Realty real estate agent will take into account the unique variables which make up your property's market value.

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7 Reasons Why Zillow Estimates Are Inaccurate

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