Mortage and Homes
Mortgage and Homes

It's hard to imagine that Zillow may be stabbing the average home buyer in the back. What started as a great platform to get information into the hands of buyers could be hurting your chances of buying a home and causing you to spend a lot of time chasing down dead-end leads. Today, we're going to highlight just how Zillow may be stabbing you as a home buyer in the back.

I have found that many homebuyers believe they're getting the most up-to-date and relevant information, but the data that we see tells us a different story. In one study, they found that 36 out of every 100 homes listed for sale or as active were no longer for sale. This means you're spending a lot of time looking at homes that aren't even for sale, or you're chasing down these dead-end leads.

Second, house hunters may not be getting updated information as fast as they think. Sure, you're probably getting a notification when a listing hits Zillow, but it turns out there's a gap, a delay between when a home is listed and when it's published to Zillow. You have to understand why this happens. It's in Zillow's advantage to keep old listings around. You have to understand how the company makes money. Zillow gets paid by selling advertising space to real estate agents. The more space available, the more leads they can generate for a real estate agent, and the more leads they can generate for a real estate agent, the more money they can charge that agent and the larger Zillow's revenue. By keeping around old listings, they can generate more ad space and, ultimately, higher revenue.

The next time you go to use Zillow, understand that they really are built to help real estate agents succeed, not the house hunter. Instead, if you are looking for ways to get the most up-to-date and relevant information, by the minute, you should learn how to plug directly into the exact system real estate agents use. You can do this by contacting a real estate agent to set you up on an email search that pulls directly from the MLS or by using our website which gets refreshed data every 15 minutes.