Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Selling Buying Renting a Home, Then Zillow is a Fantastic Place to Start Your House Selling or Buying Efforts, I Give Zillow 4 Stars out of 5 Stars

Update on my Zillow Article:

I wrote an article about trying to sell my house on Zillow and now I found some very interesting information.
Somehow there are two different versions of my house on Zillow. One has a totally incorrect Zestimate and one has a Zestimate that is $78,000 more. Yes that is correct and the screen shot is below. Please click on the graphic and it will take you to the same house for sale with a totally incorrect Zestimate.
Zillow please fix this.

Original article article is below.

I have been living in the same house for 20+ years and now I feel some stress and also positive excitement about moving. I used to have ten rental properties back in the 1990's.
So things have changed dramatically since I last bought or sold a house. is fantastic for anyone who is in this "real estate process" and I will share some of my experiences below.
I highly recommend Zillow based on the fact they have an outstanding software system and tremendous customer service.
I am just a Zillow customer and I have no other business arrangements with Zillow.

I suggest you consider your marketplace before you make a decision on which options to use on Zillow.
I live in California and it is a unique market compared to the rest of the USA. Zillow understands this concept and shows you a color coded bar chart which tells you if you are in a buyers or sellers real estate market.
In my case I am in an extreme sellers market and I am moving to a buyers market in Idaho. Life is good for me, and I want to try to sell my house myself on Zillow. Time is on my side and I can hire a real estate agent in 3-4 months if my house does not sell. Currently houses are selling in one day with multiple offers, a rare time indeed. It has literally been 30 years since we have had such a strong sellers market in the coastal areas of California.

I will update this article as I progress in the process on the Zillow system trying to sell my house.

I noticed one small problem that hopefully Zillow will fix.
For some unknown reason Zestimate (I smile when I type that word) is showing the value of my home about $180,000 too low. I do not know if this is because of something I changed or why it happened. Yesterday Zestimate was showing a price much closer to my asking price.
Please see screen shot below:

So I found this other house on Zillow that I am going to help sell, because it is a nice thing to do and it will also help me.
Plus it makes my point about the Zestimate above for my house not being correct.
This house has less square feet then mine so clearly the Zestimate for my house is not correct. Furthermore this house has a higher square foot price than mine. This house is $351 per sq ft and my house is $321 per sq ft. 

I just signed up to  their service for MLS is deceptive, because only in fine print do they tell you that it costs $99, plus 2-3% in commissions for a listing and to be put in the Thousand Oaks MLS. 
They should explain the reasons for this. Not just seek it in on you.

It took me a few days to figure out how this mls and work. Then I signed up for a flat fee mls listing in California.
This was an excellent service, and very useful. However I decided I needed a full service broker, so I hired
His fees are between .5% and 3% depending on if you need a buyers agent.
I sold my house to a buyer that did not have an agent. They just came to an open house I was having and then bought. I know this is very rare and only happens about 3% of the time, I was lucky.
So I only had to pay .5% for the total real estate agent commissions.

More Notes below... what I learned

The bad part for me which is not Zillow's fault is that 20+ real estate companies phone me per day trying to make a listing agreement with me even though they see I have my house for sale by owner on Zillow. I just put my phone on DND and most do not leave a voice mail.
Then I found a good flat fee mls listing in California and that was very useful and I can recommend it. Once I was in the mls on it stopped most of the unwanted phone calls.
Another good resource is how to sell your house quick.

Berkshire Hathaway Real Estate seems to have the most technologically advanced system in this regard. A real human phones you and if they receive your voice mail they click on their computer display and you hear a canned sales pitch.
It is a good sales pitch, Please listen below.