Zillo: How worried should agents be?

By: DavidPage

If you don’t ask, you aren’t asking Zillo

Contrary to what conference keynotes and industry news might have you believe, not all agents hate Zillo . Although I did not find any positive reviews about the company, it was a good start. Even so, I must assume someone is working really well with this platform and that I am not using the correct keywords.

However, it is not surprising that many agents harbor a deep-seated resentment towards zillo. Their bitterness isn’t because everyone hates a winner.

You have to be open to the possibility that you disagree with the bitterness of these agents or that you’ve found a way for peace and harmony with one of the most popular rental and real estate websites in the United States.

Zillo business methods

David Bolton, of Today I’m Home, argues that agents have good reasons to hate Zillo.

“Inaccurate information”

Zillo does not update or remove sold properties. They use “false advertisement” to list homes for sale as foreclosures. Consumers often use Zestimates to verify legitimate sale prices, even though they are inaccurate by up to $14,000


Agents must pay a fee if Zillo wants to send leads to property agents. Zil ow promotes agents in addition to the property agent.

A listing may appear to be represented only by one agent. This creates confusion for buyers as well as competition from agents who may not have registered to use zil low.

“Theft of intellectual Property”

Agents spend thousands of dollars marketing that you would assume belongs to them, because they paid for it. This content is often stolen from different platforms by zil low who then uses it.

They don’t protect these materials or the details inside from theft and duplication. The information could end up anywhere, even in places that are rife and ripe for scams. Agents will be held accountable and may suffer negative reviews.

Zillo are many scams

  • Scammers aside, zillow does not verify that the seller of a house posted for sale on its platform is the actual owner.
  • They don’t also verify that the address provided for the home is correct, or that the house exists.
  • Anyone who is swindled can pretend to be a representative of an agency, making it extremely easy for someone else to fall prey.
  • Bolton has many more reasons. But you get the idea. . . He’s not a fan.
  • He’s not the only one.

Remember Zil ow’s statement that it was a media firm and wasn’t interested in selling houses and then it began selling them houses? I don’t know of anyone who didn’t cry foul when this happened.

Facebook crashed recently after the news about Zil ow’s plan to buy ShowingTime broke (a relatively minor move, which I will discuss below). Many comments vilified Zil ow, and illustrated growing frustration and fear about privacy and data access, ownership and control.

  • It is easier to reach larger targets.
  • Are agents’ suspicions misplaced?
  • However, I can’t be certain that the allegations levelled at Zil ow from its detractors are true.

First, I started this blog in January and, while I have done my research diligently, I noticed a number of rapid and ongoing changes at Zillo as well as several other similar companies that could have affected how things work.

Second, I’m not a real estate agent. I don’t have any direct working relationships with zillow, so I can’t speak for them.

I am not also a lawyer. Although some Zillo practices might seem unfair, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are illegal. Capitalism has two sides. There will always be people who feel offended that they didn’t come up with a better idea or a more profitable process.

Is this to say agents should not be worried about zillow? It doesn’t. . . But maybe not for these reasons.

Zil ow’s incredible growth

If I was an agent, my concern would be less about subjective opinions regarding fairness and legal judgements over which I don’t have any expertise and more about Zillo’s objective size and power.

Zillo, despite its humble beginnings and the broken promises (believing that they were promises is just naive), is fast on track to become a one-stop shop for all aspects of home buying, from pre-sale to closing.

Look at their history, and tell me if I am wrong.

August 2015: Zil ow purchases DotLoop. DotLoop simplifies real-estate transactions by giving brokers, agents and clients a digital way to share, edit and sign documents.

May 2017: Zillo launches Instant Offers in Las Vegas, Orlando. This allows home sellers to receive cash offers from investors who are interested in purchasing their homes.

April 2018: Zilow enters the Phoenix ibuyer market with Zilow Offers. It begins buying and selling homes directly from homeowners, despite its “promises” that it wasn’t interested in the broker space.

April 2019: Zil ow home loans, a mortgage lending company, goes live six month after Zil ow bought Mortgage Lenders of America (November 2018).

November 2019, Zil ow Closing Services starts testing as a mortgage title, escrow and title service in an effort to increase the appeal and ease of Zil ow Offers.

January 2021: Zil ow Homes opens as a licensed brokerage in Phoenix and Tucson. Plans are to grow quickly. Zillo Homes “is the brokerage of record for Zil ow offers transactions.” Customers work with licensed Zillo employees and their homes are listed by them. Zillo Homes won’t be recruiting agents from any other companies, so keep your fingers crossed. Zil ow Homes will receive its data from MLS IDX, although it may encounter an embarrassing error.

February 20, 2021: Zillo announces a purchase of ShowingTime. This open house scheduling system is used extensively by agents.

As I mentioned above, the last growth spurt was met by what some might call an exaggerated reaction. One observer said, “. . . It’s not news that a large tech company buys a small one. It’s not exciting. Agents were “interesting.” . . How do I say it? . . They are not alone.

Personally, I believe the uproar can be easily explained.

Agents are panicking because they can see the writing on Wall. These agents see every move Zillo makes as just another line in the story moving closer to an inevitable conclusion. Their jobs will be gone.