How Zillow Has Reached Beyond Listings and Zestimates

by Shilpi Paul

How Zillow Has Reached Beyond Listings and Zestimates: Figure 1
Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff with President Obama. Courtesy of The White House.

How has Zillow’s multi-pronged marketing strategy disrupted the real estate industry?

Yesterday, the Washington Post’s Lydia DePillis analyzed the real estate listing website’s myriad methods of establishing themselves as a major player in the real estate world.

Aside from hosting a website populated with current listings, Zillow throws housing conferences with big-name speakers, publishes a Home Value Index, calculates values via a Zestimate, and publishes a blog. They host Google Hangouts with high-ups in the Administration, and have even interviewed President Obama.

Their interviews and panel discussions are often available via video, making them a resource of housing market and mortgage-related topics.

In the process, noted DePillis, Zillow is “taking on traditional real estate agents, media companies and publishers of housing data — and it’s threatening all of them in the process.”

From the Post:

“Zillow saw this opportunity, about five years ago, to fill what we perceived to be a massive void in academia, government and in the media,” says Spencer Rascoff, the company’s 37-year-old chief executive. “Nobody was providing objective, unbiased data and analysis about what was happening in the real estate and mortgage industries. The people that were providing it represented trade associations with agendas and were advancing particular policy prescriptions for their constituents.”

While Zillow has been growing, earning $47 million in revenue last quarter, some parties are frustrated with what they see as inaccuracies in the listing information and Zestimates.

Zillow defends their metrics. Unlike other actors who have a stake in encouraging buyers to buy, Zillow claims to aim for pure accuracy: “our business only works if people trust us to be telling them the unbaised truth,” stated a Zillow representative in the Post article.

For the full story, check out the Post.

Similar Posts:

See other articles related to: zillow

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/how_zillow_has_reached_beyond_listings_and_zestimates/7758


  1. Surbiton said at 3:09 am on Thursday October 31, 2013:
    Zillow behaves like a cyber bully the way it imposes its nonsense Zestimates on 110 million homes and refuses to correct or delete erroneous valuations when requested to do so by the homeowner despite 17% of these Zestimates being more than 25% inaccurate. Such arrogance by a $3Bn Nasdaq company is totally unacceptable and it is time that Zillow was subjected to some form of Regulation by our elected officials to stop this nonsense.
  1. Scott Pomeroy said at 10:26 pm on Wednesday October 30, 2013:
    I personally have no faith in Zillow as they have not addressed a concern I identified regarding their neighborhood boundaries and why they made the changes they did related to U Street, NW in their last revisions. The changes they made resulted in placing buildings that are part of Dupont, west of 14th in the Shaw neighborhood, artificially raising the median and average cost,. There was absolutely no discernible reason as to why they altered the previous boundaries which were historically accurate. One can only assume it was to sell more real estate at a higher rate. I only noticed the change because the walk score for U Street dropped from 98 to 94 while more activity was occurring. Upon examination I realized they had redrawn the boundary line right down U Street all the way to 16th . So that the buildings between 16th & 9 from S to U became part of Shaw, and not a part of U Street.
  1. Kevin said at 1:32 pm on Thursday October 31, 2013:
    Welp back to RedFin it is then lol.
  1. Scott Pomeroy said at 10:31 pm on Thursday October 31, 2013:
    T Street The area from 14th to 16th, and S to U has been part of the Dupont ANC since 2002 and realtors have been calling that East Dupont since I moved to the area in 88. However, if you read what I was complaining about it was the re- designation of that area as Shaw from its previous designation as U Street. U Street is the historic designation and what I will alway refer to the area as, not Shaw or Dupont. Wouldn't you agree that it doesn't make sense to put the southern half of U Street in Shaw when a U Street area exists and it is already part of that area?
  1. T Street said at 7:25 pm on Thursday October 31, 2013:
    @Scott -- Please explain how the neighborhood that you have described is "Dupont." It isn't now, and never has been. Everything from the east side of 16th going east is Shaw.

DC Real Estate Guides

Short guides to navigating the DC-area real estate market

We've collected all our helpful guides for buying, selling and renting in and around Washington, DC in one place. Visit guides.urbanturf.com or start browsing below!

Northern Virginia

Profiles of 14 neighborhoods across Northern Virginia

Looking to Give People A Reason to Stay Past 6pm
Happily Straddling the Line Between City and Suburb
Columbia Pike
Arlington’s Neglected Stepchild is Getting a Makeover
Crystal City
Turning Lemons into Lemonade
Lyon Village
Developing An Air of Exclusivity?
Hitting Its Growth Spurt
An Urban Village Hitting Its Stride
Del Ray
Virginia’s Small Town Near the Big City
Eisenhower Avenue
The Vibrancy Might Take a Few Years
The Quiet Neighborhood By the Beltway
Old Town
Mayberry By The Potomac
132 Commerical-Free Acres
Downtown Falls Church
Staying the Same in the Midst of Change
Tysons Corner
Radical Change Could Be On The Way

See more Northern Virginia »


Profiles of 14 neighborhoods in suburban Maryland

Small-Town Living in the State Capital
Bedroom Community Gets Buzzing Cache
Cabin John
In With The New While Maintaining the Old
Chevy Chase
Affluence, Green Lawns and Pricey Homes
Downtown Silver Spring
Experiencing a Resurgence After a Bumpy History
A Suburb on Steroids
Rockville Town Square
Despite the Dynamism, Still Somewhat Generic
Takoma Park
More Than a Little Bit Quirky
A Foodie Magnet on the Verge of Change
Capitol Heights
Kudzu, Front Porches and Crime
Glass Half Full or Half Empty?
Mount Rainier
Artists, Affordable Homes and A Silo Full of Corn
National Harbor
A Development Rises Next to the Potomac
Riverdale Park
A Town Looking For Its Identity

See more Maryland »

Northwest DC

30+ neighborhood profiles for the city's biggest quadrant

16th Street Heights
DC's Sleeper Neighborhood
Where (Almost) Everyone Knows Your Name
AU Park
One of DC’s Last Frontiers Before the Suburbs
DC’s Northern Neighborhood on the Cusp
DC’s 535 House Neighborhood
Cathedral Heights
Do You Know Where That Is?
Chevy Chase DC
Not to Be Confused With the Other Chevy Chase
Cleveland Park
Coming Back After A Rough Year
Columbia Heights
DC’s Most Diverse Neighborhood, But For How Long?
An Island of Serenity East of the Park
Dupont Circle
The Best of DC (For a Price)
Foggy Bottom & West End
Where the Institutional Meets the International
Forest Hills
Ambassadors and Adventurous Architecture
Foxhall Village
350 Homes Just West of Georgetown
Friendship Heights
A Shopping Mecca With a Few Places to Live
History, Hoyas and H&M
Glover Park
One of DC’s Preppier and More Family-Friendly Neighborhoods
A Posh View From Embassy Row
LeDroit Park
A Quiet Enclave in the Middle of the City
Logan Circle
Trendy Now, But Not By Accident
Mount Pleasant
Sought-After Homes Surround Main Street in Transition
Mount Vernon Triangle
From Seedy to Sought-After
The Long, Skinny Neighborhood at the City’s Northwest Edge
Park View
It’s Not Petworth
Penn Quarter/Chinatown
DC’s Go-Go-Go Neighborhood
Getting a Vibrancy of Its Own
The Duke’s Former Stomping Ground
Shepherd Park
DC’s Garden of Diversity
Spring Valley
A Suburb With a DC Zip Code
Not To Be Confused With Takoma Park
Not Quite Like Its Neighbors
U Street Corridor
The Difference a Decade Makes
Woodley Park
Deceptively Residential
Adams Morgan
No Longer DC’s Hippest Neighborhood, But Still Loved by Residents

See more Northwest DC »

Southwest DC

The little quadrant that could

Southwest Waterfront
A Neighborhood Where A Change Is Gonna Come

See more Southwest DC »

Northeast DC

Profiles of 10 neighborhoods in NE

New Development Could Shake Up Pastoral Peace
A Little Bit of Country Just Inside the District’s Borders
Not to Be Confused With Bloomingdale
Fort Totten
Five Years Could Make a Big Difference
H Street
A Place To Party, and To Settle Down
The Northeast Neighborhood That Few Know About
Michigan Park
A Newsletter-On-Your-Doorstep Community
Evolving from a Brand to a Neighborhood
Ripe for Investment Right About Now
The Difference 5 Years Makes
Big Houses, A Dusty Commercial Strip and Potential

See more Northeast DC »

Southeast DC

6 neighborhoods from Capitol Hill to East of the River

Capitol Riverfront
Still Growing
Hill East
Capitol Hill’s Lesser Known Neighbor
Congress Heights
Gradually Rising
Notable for Its Neighborliness
Historic Anacostia
Future Promise Breeds Cautious Optimism
Eastern Market
A More European Way of Living

See more Southeast DC »