Steve Osmar

Associate Broker

How Good are Zillow.com''s Zestimates?? | Lansing MI Homes For Sale | Steve Osmar

 

Here are the Zillow Zestimates for the Greater Lansing area as of 02/07/17, courtesy of Zillow.com.  Though they have been getting closer and closer to the 'real' market value in some areas, Zestimates should be thought of as 'ball park" figures.  There are some great explanations on the Zillow.com page, just scroll to the bottom and click on Zestimates.

 

    Homes on Homes w/ W/in 5% W/in 10% W/in 20% Median
County Accuracy Zillow Zestimates of Sales Price of Sales Price of Sales Price Error
Eaton Good 42,100 38,100 50.1% 67.9% 81.5% 5.0%
Ingham Good 91,100 87,800 48.3% 70.0% 84.4% 5.1%
Clinton Good 27,600 25,800 48.6% 70.3% 83.2% 5.0%

 

An explanation of the accuracy and margin of error of Zillow Zestimates:

Within 5, 10 or 20% of the Sales Price:  This is the percentage of transactions in a location for which the Zestimate was within X% of the transaction price. For example, in Eaton County, 50.1% of the time the Zestimate was within 5% of the selling price, 67.9% of the time the Zestimate was within 10% of the selling price and 81.5% of the time, the Zestimate was within 20% of the selling price.  The higher the error, the higher the confidence.

Another way to look at it is Median Error:  Half of the Zestimates in an area were closer than the error percentage and half were farther off. For example, in Eaton County, Zestimates for half of the homes are within 5% of the selling price, and half are off by more than 5%. 

 

Example: Our listing in Lansing, Ingham County - April 2013

Zestimate: $67,845

In Ingham County in April 2013, 50% of the time, the Zestimate was within 4.9% of the value. So Zillow said this should sell between $64,521 and $71,169.  REMEMBER: This will happen ONLY 50% of the time - 50% of the time, the value is outside of that range!

List Price: $68,500

Sold Price: $67,000.  So Zillow was right....this time!                                                        

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Example:  Our sale in Dimondale, Eaton County in June 2013.

Zestimate: $216,878

The Zestimate margin of error for Eaton County in June 2013 was 7.8% which puts the market value range at $199,962 to $233,794.

List Price: $269,900

Sold Price: $265,000

Here is an example where Zillow was incorrect, on the low side. 

Remember, 50% of the time, the value will be within that margin of error, 50% of the time, it won't It's a good "ball park" figure or starting point.                                                         

 

 

 

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Another example, our listing in Lansing, Ingham County - Aug 2013

Zestimate: $75,298

In Ingham County in August 2013, the Zestimte was within 8.8% of the market value.  So Zillow said this should sell between $68,672 and $81,924.

List Price: 78,500

Sold Price: $78,000.  Zillow hits the range again. 

If only owners would be happy with this large of a range when listing a property!

 

 Another example, our listing in Lansing.  Ingham County - May 2014

Zestimate: $60,473

In Ingham County in May 2014, the Zestimate was within 6.5% of the market value.  So Zillow said this should sell between $56,473 and $64,404.

List Price: $72,500

Sold Price: $70,000

Zillow was wrong this time, on the low side.  Remember Zestimates are a good starting point, but not always accurate.

You can always ask me for a REAL value range, based on REAL, LOCAL values instead of a formula.

For further information, visit Zillow.