Zillow to Start Buying and Selling Homes
– Crystal Vagnier – Select Group – Writer/Editor
This month Zillow announced it would start buying properties directly from homeowners and reselling them, beginning with Las Vegas and Phoenix. This experiment is set to begin this spring and Zillow is still intending on including real estate agents within the transaction process.
Zillow has confirmed that their property purchases and sales will be represented by a local agent allowing for real estate professionals to still earn a commission. Before listing a home, Zillow will complete all needed repairs, renovations, and updates ASAP. Sellers will be able to compare offers from investors, Zillow, and an agent’s CMA.
In the case of Zillow’s Instant Offers program, Zillow confirmed that in their initial testing they found that a majority of sellers ended up using an agent to sell their property. Not everyone is pleased with this news as Ron Hoy, Executive Vice President of Select Group, says, “This is clearly a strategy for Zillow to sell more leads and to profit off of the hard work our Realtors do day in and day out.” While Zillow’s expansion into the real estate market can be worrisome, their participation within the industry can potentially be a plentiful source of new leads for agents. Providing consumers and homeowners with more opportunities, information, and choices, Zillow may be providing brokerage partners and agents with more business with homeowners who are ready to sell.
Dan Jacuzzi’s Comments:
We are tracking this new Zillow initiative with both interest and concern. At this point, they are not operating in any of our markets and are therefore not current competition.
They are competing with Open Door and Offer Pod in Las Vegas and Phoenix who are both buying and reselling homes and not including agents. It is too early to tell if this new Zillow activity will ultimately be positive or negative for our industry. You can be assured we will keep an eye on Zillow and keep you in the loop.
Well, Zillow Zestimates are still only about 38% accurate, so they will need the help of competent Realtors to make this thing work! No matter how hard they try, technology cannot replace the expertise and personal service of a real estate professional!