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And the Winner is….. Zillow

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additional comments on
"And the Winner is….. Zillow"

  1. Christy. L Knox says:

    Ad to emails please

  2. Kristi Donaldson says:

    What I don’t understand is why as agents we pay to belong to multiple
    MLS’s then the mls gives our leads to zillow and then agents buy back these leads. We are effectively putting ourselves into harms way. Where is our leadership at NAR and in my state MAR??? We need to up our game

  3. Sam Ramey says:

    As a Realtor, if your business plan is buying leads… Start looking for a different career…

  4. Leah Courant says:

    So glad I never bought Zillow leads, almost have a couple of times but it just seemed soooo expensive I couldn’t justify the cost.

  5. REOREALTOR1 says:

    Christy you choose whether or not to add your listing on Realtor.com or Zillow. It’s the IDX feed at the end of the listing. You can opt out or as suggested above leave it off Zillow for the first several weeks or months.

  6. As a professional certified Appraiser, when pulling data for an assignment, I google the address, look at the quotes for Zillow, Trulia, Redfin & Realtor.com, then pull my data for the subject assignment & see where the AVM models estimate compares to the actual most recent data. After doing the 1004MC, Market Conditions analysis spreadsheet, I am consistently seeing Zillow overvalue properties by $50,000, more or less, usually over 10% more then the other AVM’s or the factual data. When researching & analyzing a properties comparables to establish the value of a property, I am seeing the other AVM models coming in closer to my value conclusion after going through the process a Professional Appraiser utilizes when preparing a report, following USPAP considering the sale comps/market approach, the cost approach and/or the income approach if applicable. While not always using each approach, each approach must be considered to be USPAP compliant in an appraisal report. forming a credible conclusion. When the homeowner/borrower gets their copy of the appraisal, mandated by Dodd-Frank Act to receive a copy of the Appraisal report, prior to closing, I hear all too often, “Thats lower then what Zillow quoted me, I think the Appraiser must have done it wrong”, or they ask for a rebuttle, a value reconsideration or get another opinion from another appraiser, because nearly always, the quote Zillows provides is an overvaluation zestimate, the homeowner/borrower believes that to be more accurate then the feet on the ground appraiser going through the procedures mandated to provide the estimate of value opinion. I believe Zillow is providing false hope & expectations to the borrower/owner of the property when doing an artificial valuation based on their mass data and report the overinflated numbers, which is misleading and should be fraudulent. Now seeing they are getting into the lending business, I assume they are using their overinflated numbers to make the loan, bypassing the Professional Appraisal done to standards & guidelines, following the market and utilizing their false value based not on a personal visit, but a google satellite image and massing the numbers of the neighborhood to conclude their value, similar to the county assessor who uses mass appraisal for property tax purposes, not lending? Will the lenders accept this when doing their own AVM, which they do on every loan to compare to the appraiser, when seeing the overinflated numbers that the homeowner puts most belief in, will enough lawsuits and upset homeowners force them to dismantle this antiquated model of valuation. Are they not following USPAP to get an appraisal to match their overinflated zestimate? Are they hurting the neighborhood & cities they are doing business in by overinflating values and wont the lenders wonder why nearly every loan with a Zillow thumbprint has such a high value?, no appraiser could manufacture with false data, based on their logic, will this even fly? They will upset homeowners who relied on them and then find out their properties are worth $50,000 +/- less during the process where they just spent about $500 for the appraisal, that an AMC, Appraisal Management Company takes their $100-175 off the top of the Appraisal fee. So the fee is inflated by the AMC involvement, the Appraiser is not to disclose/expose this bank scam to the borrower who thinks that the Appraiser is getting the whole fee, for a more seasoned appraiser, which increased about $150-200 during the recession. Because of this, while costs and inflation eat up what we bring home in pay, the appraisers are stuck in late 1990’s & early 2000’s accepting fees or not working, then inflation eats a larger piece of the fee due to increased costs without increased pay and ends suddenly dont meet anymore. One appraiser can only do so much each day or week. If you try to raise your price to the AMC, they already treating you like a number, give it to the lowest fee in the area or fastest turn around time Appraiser, getting a less quality report for the client and banking more of the overinflated appraisal cost, looking good they turned reports in on time, while never leaving their office, taking weekends off and paying the appraiser 30, 45 to 60 days after you turn in the report, reaping the interest from the fees by holding for a month or two. How is the Appraiser now independant, as mandated, coming out of recession, even 8-10 yrs later, broke and underwater, when they cant choose their own clients anymore, cant work with the loyal clients who fed them work, so now the fee for the work is set by who will do the assignment cheapest & fastest, is sometimes broadcasted to all appraisers in the vicinity of the property fishing for the lowest fee & fastest turnover, looking good to their lender client to receive more volume and upping the fee for their middleman status by the suckers who accept the lower fee, usually because they cant get work on their own, probably live with Mom & Dad to lower their overhead costs and are hungry to make any living wage. To the professional, this is downright detrimental to their profession, their livelihood, having the bottom feeders getting the larger share of the work with the least quality reports, taking the least pay while the middleman, not having to take continuing education, not having to fight traffic to get to an assignment, not having to do vehicle repairs and upkeep much more often then necessary using their own vehicle to do the work & risking their lives in traffic daily. So many costs the AMC does not have, yet continue to rob the Appraiser of the now larger standard appraisal fees being perpetrated to the borrowers, who complain when you come to their house as to why the fees jumped $150 and not understanding the Appraiser is not getting that extra amount, because we cant explain it to them that their bank is ripping them off using a middle man to meet mandated new rules. What they dont let in on is now the banks require less underwriting staff, save on processors who would verify the license & E & O insurance, the appraisers eligability to perform the appraisal assignment or the background to see if the Appraiser has been reprimanded by the state for any violations of USPAP, ethics or misrepresentations in reports. They now have the AMC do the preliminary reviews, the checking of Appraiser credentials, the constant statusing of where the report is every step of the way, further wasting the professional time and turning the professional appraiser into a machine that must see the property & deliver a report in lightning fast time, all while verifying the data with a participant in the transaction and not realizing the delays in traffic, phone calls, revisions, consultations, scheduling, typing, running a business and being the appraiser who is paid fees from the past, waiting a month or more to receive the fee, not having the funds to pay an assistant on time, the bank raking in more & more overdraft fees so the bills get paid on time since the cut off overdraft protection during the recession. Now, they wont give it to the businessman because you have had too many overdrafts, which was caused by removing that protection that every business needs to have help & assistance, but cant pay them when the fees on 30 day net are not met by the AMC, who dont care. The cycle has been broke, the appraiser goes broke, the middleman has endless hungry appraisers to choose from, the fastest & cheapest getting the lions share of the work and the professional doing everything right, now is not able to get enought to make ends meet. Is it no wonder, the brightest and best Appraisers have run or contemplating running from this profession as fast as they can. A brain drain from the Appraisal profession has been taking place for years now, early retirement or working for wages that pay better better then having your own business in this field now without all the cost of doing business. When I have to wait for work, instead of seeking work when its slow, Im dependant on other factors beyond my control, that dole out the work to whom make them look good & can scam them and make more off the backs of consumers not always getting the best appraiser to evaluate their biggest investment and the home they live in. So they rely on Zillow, get a false expectation and the cycle continues to perpetuate to overinflate the markets, which the appraisers then get blamed for. How about the Realtors who overprice the property on the owners request, get an offer that is not supported in the market, then the appraiser is the bad guy again being told they dont know what their doing, because Zillow told them the value was higher based on an method not involving humans with feet on the ground doing the inspection, researching and analysing the data & reporting facts, not pie in the sky every homeowner believes that their house is worth, more then all the others because Zillow told them and they believe it. HOW DOES ZILLOW STAY IN BUSINESS? Are they not violating USPAP? Are they not violating the trust of the American Public by over-inflating their home prices? This is what needs to be investigated on this platform and exposed!! Blatent violations of the rules of engagement, the proper methods of valuation and the Public Trust when needing to get a loan! Sorry for the long rant, but at 4:30am, after working on an assignment due yesterday, but behind due to traffic, revisions, working up new orders, eating, etc, there must be more then 24 hrs in a day to perform the functions properly to be an appraiser and the demands for faster turn times with lower fees that rob one of their family lives and social engagement working 18-20 hours to produce just enough to get by, but not have any savings nor even think about retirement. The way its going, after 25 yrs in the business, being over 60 yrs old, I cant even imaging the day I can retire as the recession with no work for 6 yrs ate up all my retirement savings, with no savings, im just a few days from going under, every month. THis profession that I loved so much hs become a burden to my health, my finances, my home life & my ability to even pay taxes, put gas in the car, get my teeth cleaned etc. I went 12 yrs between cars, 6 yrs between glasses, 19 yrs without Heath insurance, etc. This is the result of now Governor of New York, previously Attorney General of New York, Andrew Cuomo taking one instance in Florida of pressuring appraisers to hit numbers and ruining a profession along the way for the majority with ethics doing the job correctly, upsetting their business model in a negative way, that we are unable to recover and have to move on to other professions, leaving a shortage and drain on this profession. HEy, there is no one in the schools learning this profession now, it does not pay enough to make ends meet, you dont have control of your ability to earn a respectable income or manage yoru finances to save for a rainy day or retirement, you become a puppet to the puppet masters, a hen to the foxes in the hen house who destroy your livelihood, who rob you of your career and the scam perpetuates with the bank providing a wink and a nod. Like the one shoe bomber who now has everyone taking off their shoes at the TSA to board a plane, delaying the process, causing many to miss flights due to errors in checking for weapons, drugs or illegal things getting on a plane. Has there been even one bomb found?
    Is the AMC appraisal management company method actually good for the economy? I used to employ 8 people, was able to have a nice office for them to work in and now work alone, cant pay an assistant because I am always waiting for late fees to arrive, here the lies that checks in the mail, only to receive it 2 weeks later. What happened to collecting COD at the door? Taking the proper proceedures to verify data, to do the proper research on a homeowners biggest investment, to do the job right the first time without the burden of 48 hr turn times, to pay bills on time to preserve credit ratings? I have no control of these things now and the environment of AMC’s stopping sending assignments and getting anwsers like, our lender does not want us to send you work because ABC, 123 company does it faster, cheaper etc. So, is Zillow a good thing? NO, it hurts the industry, gives false hope and causes more grief then anyone really needs. The industry will never be the same, but the future does not look so bright with the changes it has caused. I could never recommend the Appraisal Industry even to my worst enemies now. And I would never recommend Zillow to anyone. If enough professionals let their clients know of the scam, maybe they will stop using them too. Redfin, Trulia, Realtor.com, etc provide a much more accurate estimate. Start recommending them and help alleviate the false perception that ones biggest investment that Zillow lies to them about.

  7. And the loser, is the hard working Professional who only wants to help people, make a decent living and be relevant in society.

  8. Ken Bradley says:

    Logical Simple Solution: Create a National MLS and Data Fields (RPR is a good start). Eliminate Local MLSs. NOTE: I said Eliminate Local MLSs. I did not say eliminate local Realtor Associations. Create an EZ to use Consumer Facing National Realtor Site comparable or better than Zillow. (Unfortunately Realtor.com pales in comparison at this time). Anti-Trust? If agents and brokers want to send their hard won listing data to the Zillow (Advertising Site) that is becoming the 800 pound gorilla in the room, so be it, however, the Agent/Broker should have to proactively click a box in the listing input for each listing to choose the “Advertising” site(s) they want to send their data to. Remember, I said there is a Simple Solution, I did not say it will be easy. Zillow would then be relegated to nothing more than a FSBO Site if the agents are smart. Zillow offers, Zillow Mortgages. No Professional Licensed Representation, a Joke, but the Joke is on us if we continue down the same path.

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