Real estate buyers and sellers often refer to Zillow Zestimates to get a first impression of the value of a property they are considering for sale or purchase. Zillow itself advises that Zestimates should not replace professional appraisals, and that they should be taken only as a starting point to consider a properties value. The problem from my perspective is that first impressions are often very strong. And most consumers do not read the fine print. Instead, the Zestimate takes a privileged space in the deliberations that follow.
These two charts compare the actual sold value of properties to their current Zestimates. The first chart covers sales for one month in the Red Hook Central School District. The second chart covers sales for one year in Linden Acres. Both charts show that the Zestimates are generally much higher than the actual sale price. Occasionally, a Zestimate is too high.
The take-away? Expect a Zillow Zestimate to be only an approximation; around Red Hook, probably on the high side. Actual sold prices of comparable properties (Comps) are your best guide to the probable value of a property.
Zestimate errors in the School District range from $176,434 to –$9,684, and average $21,690. In Linden Acres, Zestimates were wrong by $73,718 to –$6,935, and averaged $25,475.
Thanks for reading. If you are thinking about selling your home, please contact me. I can tell you what I bring to the table as a listing agent, and help you decide when is the right time to list.
When you are ready to start browsing homes or land in Dutchess, Columbia, and Ulster Counties, I encourage you to do so at my website, Ask-Marty.com.
Because I am a member of THREE MLSs — Mid-Hudson MLS (Dutchess County), Hudson Valley Catskill Region MLS (Ulster County), and Columbia Greene Northern Dutchess MLS — you can search the entire region on both sides of the Hudson River. You can save properties that interest you and you can set the site to email you notices when new listings match your criteria. The site provides a great way for buyers or sellers to monitor a specific neighborhood or school district or type of property!