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    Homeowners: Why You Should Claim Your Home on Zillow Today


    Zillow.com is not just a tool for homebuyers. It’s a tool for homeowners. Take ownership of your home on Zillow today!

    Whether you’re thinking of selling your home soon or you’re planning to stay there long-term, claiming your home on Zillow is a good idea. Here’s why: When you claim your home on Zillow, you can edit the property details for your home. You may find that the number of bedrooms or bathrooms or the square footage is listed incorrectly or that some of the features of your home – like the fact that you have hardwood floors, a fireplace, a security system, or other upgrades – have not been included.

    Zillow says, “The Zestimate (pronounced ZEST-ti-met, rhymes with estimate) home valuation is Zillow’s estimated market value, computed using a proprietary formula. It is not an appraisal. It is a starting point in determining a home’s value.”

    Zillow can only pull the information about your home from public records; you can provide the rest and confirm the accuracy of the information that Zillow has obtained. Additionally, when you are ready to list your home, your home information will be more accurate, as will your Zestimate, which buyers will definitely be reviewing.

    “The Zestimate is calculated from public and user submitted data; your real estate agent or appraiser physically inspects the home and takes special features, location, and market conditions into account.”

    Waiting until you are starting to think about selling your home means you will be waiting weeks (or maybe longer!) for your Zestimate to readjust and correct itself, rather than knowing that the information is correct from the beginning. A Zestimate history on a home claimed by its owner will be more indicative of the market over the long-term, rather than showing a sharp increase when you or your REALTOR® correct your information at the time of listing, which might cause buyers to question your home’s value.

    Finally, claiming your home on Zillow means that you can have a positive influence on the values in your neighborhood. When buyers look for homes available to purchase, they are also looking for the values in the neighborhood, and Zillow, without a doubt, the most popular tool for today’s buyers during their home search.

    Of course, even Zillow warns that their tool is not perfect – not a substitute for an opinion of value by a licensed real estate appraiser or a market analysis by a REALTOR®. They also warn that there is a distinct margin of error in their formula, which varies by state and market area. For example, the Metro Atlanta area only receives 2 of 4 stars for accuracy from Zillow with a 9.2% Median Error in Zestimates. If you are thinking of selling your home or just want a professional market analysis to compare your home to others in your neighborhood and area, please contact me – I can provide you with up-to-date comparable sales and help you view your home through a buyer’s eyes in this, at times, confusing real estate market.

    zillow_zestimate
    Your Zestimate history will be more consistent with the market when you claim your home and correct any inaccuracies.

     

    ARE YOU READY TO CLAIM YOUR HOME? HERE’S HOW:

    STEP 1

    1. Go to Zillow.com and search for your home address in using the search box.

    zillow_1

    STEP 2

    Unless Zillow has difficulty locating your home based upon the address you entered, you should automatically land on your home’s page. If not, double-check the address you entered and make sure that you entered the street address in its entirety, as well as the city and state (Zillow can be a little sensitive and finicky sometimes).

    STEP 3

    Use the “More” drop-down menu at the top of the page (right-hand side) and select “Claim Your Home” from the menu.

    STEP 4

    Zillow will ask you to certify that you are the true owner of the home. One of the names displayed on the page should be yours. Click the box next to your name and then click the agreement box at the bottom to continue. If you don’t see your name listed, there is an option to verify your identity with a phone number.

    STEP 5

    Refresh the page (this is important!), and then go back to the Edit drop-down menu and begin editing your home by choosing Edit Home Facts, Edit Home Description, or Add/Edit Photos.

    Your Zestimate may change (increase OR decrease) as you correct the information. Every time your Zestimate adjusts, you will get an email.

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    11 Responses to “Homeowners: Why You Should Claim Your Home on Zillow Today”

    • Jay Thompson

      Written on

      Hey Maura, Jay T from Zillow here!

      Thanks for writing a terrific piece. You’re spot on in advising your readers to claim and edit their properties on Zillow now, as opposed to waiting until their home is listed for sale. With 100 million + homes in the database, Zestimate adjustments can take some time to show up.

      Data accuracy is important to us. As you mentioned, our primary source for property information on a home is public records, and as a real estate professional you are well aware that those public records are not always accurate nor complete. You’ve provided super advice to homeowners to make sure the data we have on their home is both accurate and complete. Thanks!!

      Reply
      • Maura

        Written on

        Hi, Jay!

        I just realized I didn’t respond to you here (just on Facebook)! Thank you for your input from the Zillow point of view. I appreciate you taking the time to read my post and add your perspective, and I appreciate that data accuracy is important to Zillow, but it’s a team effort! Zillow, real estate agents and homeowners need to work together to get it right.

        Thank you, Jay! 🙂

        Reply
    • Stacie Staub

      Written on

      This is really great info, and something that I hadn’t really thought about recently. I would love to use the info in a post on my blog…would you want a guest spot linking back to this original post? (pretty please?)

      Thanks!
      Stacie

      Reply
    • Matt & Nicole

      Written on

      As a new client of Maura’s we took her advice and within less than 2 months, our townhouse’s Zestimate went up $20,000. With improvement in the market and customizing our homes details, with minor & major details, we noticed an immediate jump of a few thousand dollars within a week. Then it went up another $1-3k almost weekly, until now, less than 2 months later we’re $20k above our original, pre-claimed Zillow estimate. It also improves your monthly rent estimate if that’s the route you choose. Had we not claimed our property the Zestimate wouldn’t have adjusted like it did, as we look at comps within our neighborhood barely adjusting. It does take time to adjust so do it as soon as possible. Thanks for the tip Maura! We look forward working with you once we make our next steps.

      Reply
    • Mike

      Written on

      Hey Maura!

      Thanks for the info and heads-up about taking ownership on Zillow. Just popped in to Zillow and updated our listing on our new home!

      Reply
    • Alan Sponberg

      Written on

      What can I do if Zillow doesn’t recognize my address? I can’t clam my home nor can I update My Home information or use Fidelity’s Full View to automatically track the Zestimate value of my house. I tried submitting this question on the Zillow website back in July and again more recently, but have received no responses.
      Thanks for any help you can provide.

      Reply
      • Maura

        Written on

        Hi, Alan! While I do not work for Zillow, nor am I a Zillow expert, my experience has been that you can actually enter your address and force Zillow to recognize/add it. If you contact me via the Contact Maura tab and send me your address, I’d be happy to try it for you and report back. 🙂

        Reply
    • James Thatcher

      Written on

      Thanks for sharing this post! I always wondered if this was something I should so as a homeowner. I’ve never heard anyone explain it as clear as concise as you have. Doing this right away! 🙂

      Reply

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