UPDATE: JANUARY 2013: Zillow's median price for Sarasota County for 2012 is wildly inaccurate compared to MLS statistics. See
Did you know that Zillow is not a licensed real estate broker? Zillow does not have one single employee, or licensed real estate
professional, in any local market in the US or Canada. Zillow has no knowledge of local neighborhood boundaries. Their real estate
values are calculated from an algorithm applied to publicly available tax values, which have nothing to do with market values. There is
not one single mortgage lender that uses Zillow "zestimates" for property values in a loan appraisal, nor do local municipalities use
Zillow data for tax assessments.
Zillow is irrelevant, if not downright misleading. Their sole purpose as a business is to sell advertising, not real estate. Zillow exists to
attract a large number of potential home buyers and sellers, displaying properties that are not available, and sell these "leads" to real
estate agents and related industries like mortgage lenders, home improvement, and financial institutions. Why? Because prospective
home buyers are more likely to be credit worthy and affluent, which is the type of customer companies want to reach with advertising.
As a buyer, using Zillow data will result in a false impression of our local real estate market, costing you time and money traveling to
view area properties and making unrealistic offers.
As a seller, when you hire me to list your home for sale, I am fully prepared to combat false Zillow data from the day your home hits the
market, resulting in a realistic sale price and a quicker sale to educated home buyers.
I was recently working with a buyer who told me that they would make an
offer on a short sale "based on market conditions". The buyer was from
When I asked where he got his "market conditions" from, of course, it was
To the left is a screen shot of their website statistics for Sarasota for 2011
and 2012. Can you trust data that shows a falsely declining real estate
market in 2011, and a real estate market that then turned around and
posted a 72% increase in median sales price the very next year in 2012?
Sarasota's real estate market bottomed in 2010, was flat in 2011, and
experienced sustainable growth in 2012.
Sarasota County Median Home Sale Price Zillow vs MLS
2010: Zillow $153,600 Local MLS $135,000
2011: Zillow $130,000 Local MLS $134,900
2012: Zillow $220,900 Local MLS $155,000
Want to see the MLS data I used? Here are the links to the PDF documents:
2010 Sold Data
2011 Sold Data
2012 Sold Data