Can I trust Zillow estimates?

Can I depend on some Internet company to calculate the value of my property in Springfield?

Zillow is a billion-dollar Internet marketer that provides computerized estimates that purport to calculate the market value of each home in the United States. Zillow tries to reach this goal this feat by using a fancy logarithm that crossreferences factors which impact property values, but here's a typical story I have heard from real estate 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 search the web for the phrase "Can I trust Zillow?" or "Can I trust Z-Estimates" you'll find countless testimonials by angry property owners and skeptical real estate buyers who have discovered the hard way just out inaccurate Zillow's pricing can be. Many people in Springfield claim that Zillow's estimates have a margin of error of approximately 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 market 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 still remains popular with some real estate shoppers. Real estate sellers and home shoppers should understand that there is not a single community in Springfield where either a mortgage lender or tax collector uses Zillow for tax assessment or appraisals. Our professional advice is to take "valuations" from any website at arm’s length. Putting too much stock into a computer logarithm can cause a lot of disappointment.

Connect with Nesbitt Realty today for a free comparative market analysis of your property's worth. We promise that a website won't set the ideal price. Instead, your friendly neighborhood Nesbitt Realty Realtor will take into account the many variables which make up your real estate's value.

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7 Reasons Why Zillow Estimates Are Inaccurate

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