Can You Trust the Zillow Zestimate?

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I’ve been getting asked a lot about the Zillow Zestimate lately. Here are a few of my thoughts. As you may or may not know, the Zestimate is created by using an algorithm that compares your home to others that have recently sold in the area. While this algorithm does take square footage, bedroom count, and other market data into … Read More

Coming Soon Listings now on MLS

MLS Listings

Most consumers probably are not aware of this, but our local MLS just went through a fairly large upgrade. The implementation left a lot to be desired, with the CEO of MLS Listings issuing a public apology for the blunders. One of the new features of the upgraded system is a new status for listings: “Coming Soon.” The Coming Soon … Read More

The Dirty Truth about Home Price Valuations

The Dirty Truth about Home Price Valuations

The Internet is swimming in offers for free, instant home price valuations. They’re all over Google search results, Facebook, Craigslist, and just about every Realtor web site. You can look up a home’s value on Zillow,, and thousands of other sites which promise instant, online and accurate real estate valuations. But the truth is, there’s much more to know … Read More

Zillow Giveth, Zillow Taketh Away

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While searching for a blog topic, two reports spanning the good/bad news spectrum caught my eye, because had a hand in both. To check out a Zillow-backed report showing the relative strength of the South Bay housing market, CLICK HERE. To check out a different Zillow-cited report showing how home values and negative equity are still headed in the … Read More

Santa Cruz July 2008 median home price: $607,500

If there is an even number of homes sold, you take the two in the middle, you find the difference in prices, and all that difference in price to the lower-priced house (or subtract it from the higher priced house) to get the median home price. … It’s interesting to note that the Zillow blog entry talks about the OFHEO Housing Price Index – because the OFHEO housing price index is probably going away now, since the OFHEO (Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight) itself is slated to be merged into a new entity, the Federal Housing Financing Agency. … So looks like we po’ folk out here in Santa Cruz are just going to have to stick with the trusty, rusty median home price as a rough measure of what’s going on. I think it’s pretty clear by now that all housing types, in every location throughout the county, are off their peaks, some of them (south county, north county) by huge margins.