If you are in the market to buy a home, you may be wasting your time using Zillow or Trulia for your real estate search. Why you ask? Here are 8 reasons not to use Zillow or Trulia.
- Missing tons of homes for sale – Currently thousands if not millions of verified, legitimate homes for sale are not listed on Zillow or Trulia. Zillow and Trulia are in negotiations to get all Realtor listings back on their website, but this is proving difficult. Thousands of brokers don’t even know there listings are not on Zillow or Trulia. In the past it was automatic. Not anymore. You very well could miss out on that amazing deal that just got listed today.
- Zillow owns Trulia – Didn’t know that? Well it is a fact. Zillow, Trulia, and other real estate search engines are owned by the same company, Zillow Group. All of these sites have the same bad information, so why waste your time checking them all? Many of our customers say they check both sites because they “don’t want to miss anything.” This works well for Zillow Group. They make their money from advertisers on their site. The more searches, the more millions they make.
- Local is Better – Local Broker websites like this site, along with Realtor.com, have direct feeds of all listings for sale by Realtors. If you know what town you want to buy in, just find a local Broker that specializes in that area that has a user friendly website. These sites will have more information about the homes for sale, along with the most current and accurate information possible. Don’t waste your time weeding through the millions of listings on Zillow or Trulia when you can search local.
- Scams – Zillow/Trulia allows anyone to post homes for sale or rent, just like craigslist. This opens the door for con artists to step in and make some money. How do you know the home you are looking at is even owned by the person who posted the listing? Countless times we run into people that have been victims of scams on Zillow or Trulia. Never buy a house you find on there if it is not listed by a Realtor you can verify is a Realtor. Can you go to his office? Call his Broker? Realtors verify ownership. Zillow does not.
- Bad Information – By their own admission, they will advertise anything that is sent their way. They don’t check the information for accuracy. Is that house even for sale? Maybe not. They even told me “Bad information in, bad information out.”
- False Advertising – Daily we receive calls for foreclosures found on Zillow or Trulia that are false. They knowingly continue to advertise these false foreclosures to drive traffic to their site. How would you like it if your house was the next victim of this tactic? Recently I had a home for sale that was also listed as a foreclosure on Zillow and Trulia. I had no way of fixing the false information. I also have no way of knowing how that effected my clients sale price, but I don’t think it helped. Buyers assume that foreclosures are in very bad shape, and yet that was not the case for my seller. How many people bypassed his home because of this false advertising? There is no way to know.
- False Reviews – No site has more false Realtor reviews than Zillow and Trulia. Some reviews are true, mine are, but it is way to easy for Realtors to falsify their reviews on there. The best way to hire a Top Tier Realtor is to ask around. Someone you know has sold their home in your town, right? Call your neighbor that sold, or family and friends that have sold, and ask them about their Realtor. That is a true review.
- Zestimates – When estimating your homes value, Zillow is no better than your tax assessor. Actually, I would trust your tax assessor more, because at least they are local and have access to verified sales data. Zillow say that their Zestimates are within 10% of actual sales prices only 63.6% of the time. In our world, 10% is a huge difference. If you wonder what your home is worth, just talk to a Realtor.