Currently there are many different real estate venues striving to capture the interest of home buyers and home owners. The top choices overall include franchise sites such as Weichert, but more often than not, consumers are heading to sites such as Trulia, Zillow, and Realtor.com to search for their next home.
Zillow is actually a very well designed portal. It gives home buyers a lot of information in an easy to use format. Very user friendly!
However, one caveat to be aware of – while in some areas, the infamous Zillow “Zestimate” (estimated home value) may be quite accurate, the median error for Zestimates in Pike County is 29.2%. Zillow only gives its Zestimates for Pike County 2 stars (a “fair” rating) out of a total of 4 stars.
For Wayne County PA, the Zestimate accuracy is not even on the table. Source: http://www.zillow.com/howto/DataCoverageZestimateAccuracyPA.htm
This is mainly due to the availability of public records – Zillow builds its information based on the available public tax records. Wayne and Pike County do not have as much public information on home sales available as other counties. In addition, Zillow and other “automatic value estimators” cannot take into consideration any updates, additions, and other modifications. Also take into consideration that “nearby homes” used as “comparables” may not have anywhere near the same features and amenities (such as being waterfront, a view property, golf course property, etc.)
The Zestimate Accuracy Table for all PA Counties can be found here. You can also see the Zillow Accuracy Report for other states and their respective counties by clicking here and choosing “States/Counties” from the top of the table.
The take away from this is: please do not rely on Zillow “Zestimates” when determining the value of a home you may find attractive. The Zestimate could be way higher than it should be, or way lower than the Zestimate indicates. Additionally, some homes that are no longer available may show up on these portals and seem like they are for sale when they are not. We REALTORS have very little control over what is displayed on sites like Zillow and Trulia, nor can we control the “side” information and links to other services that may appear alongside the home listing.
Zillow and Trulia and other real estate portals can be good tools to use to start your home search, but the best help in determining the right home for you and your family is a local real estate agent who knows the market. As a full time REALTOR with Weichert Realtors Paupack Group since 2007, I can provide you with the most accurate data you need to make the best home buying (or selling) decision.
All of the currently available homes for sale in Wayne & Pike County PA (Hawley, Tafton, Greentown, Lake Wallenpaupack, Newfoundland, Lake Ariel, and EVERYWHERE else in between!) can be found on my Northeast PA MLS Portal. Creating an account and using the search & save features are easy!
Give me a call and let’s get started! My cell: 570-647-5170