Zillow’s Zestimates can be deeply flawed when it comes to determining your home’s value. Here’s what you should do instead.

I get a lot of questions from people asking me if they should trust the value that Zillow gave their home.

To answer that, let me share a few facts with you about Zillow. As a company, they started in 2006. Prior to that, they weren’t involved in the real estate market. Last time I checked, they haven’t sold any homes, either.

Zillow is basically a company that collects whatever data they can find and then puts it into their website to determine home values. The one thing Zillow can’t account for is the upgrades or special features of your home. Think of it this way: has Zillow been in your home? Of course not.

Zillow’s estimates, called Zestimates, are determined by an algorithm based on comparable homes sales. In the greater Milwaukee metro area, Zestimates can be off by as much as 10% or more. Zillow even admitted that 46% of the time their Zestimates were off by at least 5% or more.


As you might’ve heard by now, a homeowner in Illinois actually filed a lawsuit against Zillow because they claimed their Zestimate harmed their home sale. This may yet turn into a class action lawsuit. Zillow knows they have a problem, and they’ve gone as far as offering a $1 million prize to anyone who can fix their algorithm.

In the 11 years since Zillow has been around, whenever I get calls from prospective buyers about homes they’ve found on Zillow, I’ve found that 35% of the time their information is inaccurate. Our website’s information, on the other hand, is 98% accurate.

Taking all of this into account, I wouldn’t put much credo into Zillow’s Zestimate. If you really want to know the value of your home, call a professional Realtor. We can physically look at your home and all of its upgrades and features to provide an accurate valuation.

If you have any questions about Zillow or you want to know the real value of your home, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’d love to help you.