… Zestimate? Zillow’s estimate on your home’s value. Zillow isn’t the only one that does this. Nearly every website will give you an estimate nowadays. But here’s the thing. They are all different. And they are all wrong.
Let us explain what we mean by wrong… But first, we wil explain what a Zestimate is.
This comes up very frequently when meeting with homeowners to discuss selling their homes. There are a lot of people who feel confident that the Zillow estimate is the true value of their home even though it is an estimate.
Zillow’s own website on their Zestimate says: “A Zestimate is not an official appraisal, but is a starting point in determining a home’s value.”
You can also look at other websites like realtor.com, Trulia, and Redfin, and they will all give estimates. And guess what, all the estimates will be different.
The following are the home value estimates from several different well-known websites:
Redfin = $1,046,012
Realtor.com = unable to locate property
Trulia = $1,215,200 (Zillow owns Trulia)
If you owned this home and priced it off your estimate, depending on which website you looked at, it could cost you $150,000.
Here is the reality: They don’t know anything about your home beyond public records. They may know the bedroom count and square footage. But assuming that is all correct, they don’t know if your home has a view, is renovated, or has any other special features.
So if you’re looking for a starting point on your home’s value, check the estimates on 2-3 websites to get a rough idea.
The reality is that there is not a single number to “value” a home. We always share with our clients that there are three different prices for any home.
What an appraiser will say it’s worth. The truth is, if you hired 10 appraisers to appraise your home, they would most likely give you 10 different numbers.
Fair market value for a home. This is not a number, but it’s a reasonable range. This is how we always share the value of a home. The reason for this is we will give options for upgrades or repairs that could be done that would improve the value of the home.
Whatever a buyer is willing to pay. This is the reality of the ‘value’ of the home. You can make a large impact on what you would sell for (value) by making minor changes. Does this impact the value of the home, or is it just affecting the selling price?