Real Estate Giants: Zillow and Redfin

The US, real estate market, is booming these days especially in certain areas in the country. Cities are expanding, and people now prefer more to live in the busy metropolis for economic reasons. Suffice it to say, competition in the real estate industry has never been more fierce. 

One key player that’s changed how people find their new homes is, to no one’s surprise, the Internet. Just about anyone can look up all types of information, they’d need to find their soon-to-be dream home. And real estate agencies have taken this opportunity and set up their own websites so that they can reach out to their prospective customers. Of course, just as it is offline, there’s also plenty of real estate sites online for people to consider. The two leading competitors are the popular Zillow and Redfin.

Can anyone compete against Zillow and Redfin in the USA? There are certainly more than a couple of strong contenders but, for the most part, the two real estate giants are the go-to sites for most customers on the search for their next home. The listings and services that the two sites offer are considered reliable and accurate. And since they’re dealing with something as important (and expensive) as one’s house, reliability and accuracy are much-needed values. 

To give one an idea as to why Zillow and Redfin are two of the most trusted and preferred real estate sites in the business, one has to know more about the two sites and understand what makes both sites stand out from their competition. 

Zillow

According to recent statistics, Zillow is the most visited real estate website in the industry, with an average of 36 million visitors per month. Considering how the site is geared specifically towards the customer and how it acquired its biggest competition, Trulia, not more than three years ago, it’s understandable how Zillow got so popular. 

Why it’s so popular is another interesting matter. Zillow allows people to list their home for sale or rent, but that’s not all. The real estate website doesn’t charge the person listing their property on the site, which is extremely convenient for a majority of people. What’s more is that Zillow lets users search the property listing and look at the estimated value for free. 

Another thing about Zillow is that their site is mobile-friendly. They even have their own smartphone app which is one of the more popular mobile real estate app options out there. 

Besides all of that, what really sets Zillow apart from the crowd is their Zestimate feature. A Zestimate appears in the listing of each property on the website. It is basically a home valuation or the site’s estimated market value of a certain property. This Zestimate offers customers a good starting point in determining how much the house or the property is going to cost. Of course, it’s not going to be a completely accurate value since there are a lot of outside factors that the customer has to consider, but it still gives one a good idea on how to negotiate the price. This feature is considered by many to be Zillow’s strongest and most popular asset. With it, customers are more confident and aware of how much they could get for a certain property. What’s even better is that Zestimate uses public and private user-submitted data.

Zillow and Redfin

Moreover, on each property listed, Zillow offers additional information such as tax and price history, which is useful to know for prospective buyers. 

What it all boils down to is this: Zillow is quite attentive to their customers, making it easy for buyers and sellers to navigate the site, all free of charge. This real estate site is incredibly dedicated to empowering consumers by giving them more than enough information and offering the appropriate resources. Clearly, this type of attentiveness is one of the reasons why so many people rely on the site. 

Being around for more than a decade, Zillow evidently knows how to serve their customers. Their living database includes more than 110 million homes, so customers will most likely find what they are looking for in this real estate site. 

Redfin

Quite possibly the only real estate site that can currently compete against Zillow especially in terms of calculating home-value estimates online, Redfin was initially for map-based research for real estate listings. But then they saw the potential of their site and later sought real estate agents who, in their own words, wanted to be customer advocates instead of merely salesmen. 

While Redfin pulls in an average of 6 million visitors per month – just a fraction of Zillow’s monthly average – it’s still a well-known real estate website that offers people accurate property-value estimates. Considering how Redfin is a fairly new real estate player, it’s actually doing extremely well and growing at an impressive rate.

One of the things that Redfin boasts is their low seller’s listing fee. One can list a home or property at a fee of as low as 1.5%, which is half of the fee that most real estate sites offer. One still has to pay a commission to the agent though.

On the other hand, buyers are usually given more information than they would have gotten from other real estate websites. And the information Redfin provides is quite extensive from flood zone information, construction components, sewage system specifics, even homeowner’s association fees. Buyers will have a pretty good idea on the property they have their eyes on.

However, it doesn’t stop there. Redfin’s map-based origin is utilized the most in the site’s feature that includes information on a specific property’s nearby schools, restaurants, stores, and the like. With this type of information, one will get to know one’s area before even moving to their new place. One won’t have to worry about being too far from a certain school or store because one will know the facilities and businesses in the vicinity. This is great for those who don’t have the time to visit the property and look around the area.