If you have been searching for homes online, then you know the 3 top sites for real estate listings: Realtor.com, Zillow.com and Trulia.com. All 3 have their own unique differences, and you probably have your favorite, I know I do.
Zillow has only been around for less than a decade but has spawned millions of customers who feel online searching for property is a first step must. Zillow is known for their “Zestimate”, which many agents don’t find that helpful, but many home buyers like to rely on for accurate value estimates. A true estimate of a property’s value takes many factors into account, more factors than the Zillow algorithm calculates, like curb appeal, condition, upgrades, roof age etc.
Trulia is another real estate website that was also launched in 2005 (like Zillow) and this San Francisco-based site filled an important gap in the market. For years, potential homebuyers in the Bay Area were complaining about the lack of available information on property for sale in the San Francisco area and beyond. More often than not, the home prices were out of date or had been knocked up (or down) and the fact that so many sold homes were still appearing in magazines and newspapers despite saying otherwise was a source of great frustration for many property seekers in California. It was like finding gold in a valley, only to discover when you picked it up that someone else had already claimed it.
Realtor.com has a slightly less user friendly layout and appeal, but since it was born a bit earlier than it’s competitors, many people have become use to it’s functionality and are loyal to it.
Now I do need to mention 1 other platform that is quite popular with consumers and that is the Coldwell Banker home search website. Now, Coldwell Banker is a Real Estate franchise and each office is independently owned, but their website for national home searches is quite competitive to the “Big 3”. And more specifically for California, californiamoves.com is even more popular for California specific home seekers.
After you try each site for a while, you’ll find the one that fits your needs best and the one that you are most comfortable using. This, in addition to a great Realtor, should make your home searching and buying a enjoyable experience.