A recent WSJ survey found that online property valuation site Zillow is accurate within 7.8% of the actual sales price.
The Journal looked at transaction prices recorded for 1,000 recent home sales in seven states, using data from First American Real Estate Solutions, a data provider in Santa Ana, Calif., and compared those prices with Zillow estimates, which didn’t yet reflect the sales. The median difference between the Zillow estimate and the actual price was 7.8%
However, when Zillow is off, it is damn off, by 25% on one in 10 homes, and in one instance, by $2 million.
For this reason, experts recommend using ZIllow as a starting point. Consider it among a suite of tools, like consulting local experts, checking out neighborhoods yourself, and asking around for sale prices. — BEN POPKEN