Can I trust Zillow estimates?

Can I rely on Zillow to figure out the market value of my home in Winchester?

Zillow is a billion-dollar website that provides automated estimates that purport to calculate the sales value of every property in the United States. Zillow tries to reach this goal this task by using a fancy algorithm that crossreferences factors which impact home values, but here's a story I have heard from property 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 research the Internet for the phrase "Can I trust Zillow?" or "Can I trust Z-Estimates" you'll discover countless testimonials by angry homeowners and skeptical real estate shoppers who have discovered the hard way just out inaccurate Zillow's pricing can be. Many people in Winchester say 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 ideal price. If the margin of error is an improbable 5% that means that a z-estimate is only within $25,000 of the asking price.

Yet Zillow still remains popular with some people. Property owners and home buyers should know that there is not a single neighborhood in Winchester where either a mortgage lender or tax collector uses Zillow for tax assessment or appraisals. Our professional advice is to take estimates from any website at arm’s length. Putting too much reliance into a website can cause a lot of confusion.

Talk to Nesbitt Realty today for a free comparative market analysis of your property's worth. We promise that a computer won't set the ideal price. Rather, your friendly neighborhood Nesbitt Realty expert 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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