Why are some listings on Zillow and Trulia not always accurate? Episode #243

Hello! Welcome to Todd Miller TV. I get the question all the time, “Why are the listings on these syndicated websites like Zillow and Trulia and the other ones not accurate?” And so, I’m gonna explain what those sites actually do, what they are, and how they get their data which is the most important part. So, a Real Estate Agent takes a listing, and they have a signed listing agreement, it’s not in the MLS. In Real Estate terms, we call that a “pocket listing.” Pocket listing ’cause the agent knows about it. He can sell the house and earn a commission but nobody else kinda can participate in that. So MLS Rules typically say It have so many hours, maybe 72 hours it has to be put in the MLS and available for everybody. Well, once it goes in the MLS there’s only one place that that’s gonna go. Where everyone can see it and that’s the MLS. Okay? It goes in the MLS, everyone in the MLS can see it. Everyone has access in MLS, which means Real Estate agents who subscribe to the MLS. Now, there are some websites that have something called IDX. And one of those is Realtor.com. They pull directly from the MLSs and Real Estate agent who have their own websites that have an IDX feed. And basically it’s internet date exchange. They jut pull the listings put it on their websites. So they’re relatively accurate. So the next question is, what about Zillow and Trulia? Don’t they just pull from the MLS and pull them for everyone? Well the answer is they don’t. The way listings get on those websites is they’re syndicated on those websites. So this is how that happens. I decided I want to advertise the property even more than I am and I realize there’s all these other websites that my listing isn’t on. So what I do is I go in to one of these syndicated websites like .2agent, or listhub or somethin like that or I go write on to zillow or Trullia and I put the Listing in there, I put the pictures, I typed information, I put some information on there, and it’ll/it grab the information and it puts on that website. So let’s say, I got a listing put in the MLS, and then 2 weeks later I say “hey haven’t gotten any hits on this, let me go advertise on another website. And I go ahead and put it on another website and then I get an offer, I go to a contract. Well, Most agents who do that aren’t gonna then go back to all the website on that one listing they put it on and go and change the status. They just leave it there, forget about it. ‘Cause it’s like “Hey I got the house sold, I don’t that which is an advertisement out there.” A good analogy is a print ad, when a Real Estate make a print ad and sends it out, Once it out it’s gone it can’t be changed. So once the house is sold there’s still these print ad out there saying the house is for sale. So it’s very common. You go on to these websites that aren’t directly connected to the house, and you’ll see a house available. And then what will happens is you’ll call the agent or call some agent asking about the house. They’ll say it’s already under contract or it’s sold or whatever. So it’s very common. So, those websites are really/they’re just advertisement portals. They’re nothing on there is guaranteed, nothing on there/you can see 2 listings of the same house right next to each other, and they can have different information. You know, they can just be different. Because it depends on what the agents put in. And ofcourse, it could say it’s under contract, or say it’s available when it was sold. And so, the reason I’m saying this is ’cause I’m hearing /I’m getting a lot clients coming to me and they/they’ll come to me. And the first thing they’ll do is show me the 6 listings they drove by and they want to go see them on the inside. So really quick. We’ll sit down and pull them up the MLS, under contract, under contract, under contract or sold. Right? And I’ll say “Where did you get these?” and they’ll say “I went to Zillow, I went to Trulia, I went on some online website because I wanted to find all the properties that were available.” I know they’re all on there but they’re not all on there. So I just wanted to sort of share that with you. What you can do though is you can if you do see a property you can call the agent and say “Hey, your property is still being advertised. Can you go and remove it?” And the agent should be able to remove that advertisement of that property on there. But the truth is, the way/the only way to get accurate information is to go directly to somebody who has access to an MLS. And ask then because they are the only ones that really know. These syndication websites, they could take weeks to get the information, even when they get it it could be outdated. And I guarantee you if I went on Zillow and Trulia and look for listings that I’ve had in the past I’ve sold, a lot of them would still be on there and they’ll say they’re still available. Alright? So i just wanted to share that with you, you know, that I know/And I’m not picking on those companies. Those were great companies. They have a super business plan, they do a good job, they have a lot of eyeballs looking at their site. But you just have to understand that anytime you are starting to make copies an iterate information it just gets more and more out of whack. And the the further away you are from the direct source, people forget about it. So just because it’s on there, it doesn’t mean it’s available. I know a lot of people know those sites so they want to go to them and look. but you know, just keep in mind, you’re not looking at accurate instant information, you’re looking at a picture of/in the past that’s what it was. One fo the good things about Zillow is,they have on there days on Zillow. So does this days on Zillow 180? That’s 180 from when the agent put it on. So chances are, the price has either changed, or it’s sold, or it’s some/status is different. So I would/that’s a tool you can use on there that I think is pretty cool. Anyway, I thought I would share that with you. I think it’s important that you’d understand, when you’re looking for this information online, what it really means, so that you’re not thinking one thing about a property, and then when you’re actually going to find that real estate agent and make that purchase, you’re finding that it’s not available and the houses you’ve been looking at really aren’t there. An ofcourse, you probably have driven by and wasted a lot of time so, I thought I would share that with you. That is my update for today and hope to see you on another video. Thanks!