WATCH: Zillow’s Dirty Little Secret – Hidden FSBO Listings
If you have listed on Zillow as a for sale by owner (aka FSBO), or if you are thinking about it, you can expect your phone to ring off the hook on day one!
Normally that would be a great thing, but you’ve only received agent calls trying to solicit your listing, and you’re wondering if you’ll get any actual buyers to call you…
What you need to know is there is that you are trapped in a spider web like trap and you are going to want to escape…
Sellers often try Zillow’s free for sale by owner listing to test the market. They also use it as a means to save on commissions. Zillow used to be a great place for that, and I speak from personal experience, but things changed just a few years ago with the way your listing and information is treated when you list on Zillow as FSBO. The information I share below will likely cause you to change your selling strategy and it’s must know information.
FACT: Listing your home for sale by owner on Zillow almost certainly won’t attract a real buyer.
There are 3 things you need to know:
1. Zillow hides for sale by owner listings (see video)
2. Your information is sold to agents so they can solicit you
3. The system is set up for you to fail, and agents are banking on it
1. THE SECRET IS OUT! FSBO Listings on Zillow are hidden
It’s true… when you list on Zillow as FSBO, your listing will not display when your average buyer searches for property. FSBO listings require a special filter and are not automatically displayed with the agent listings. You have to know where to look or they are very hard to find.
Watch the video below to see for yourself. Note: Be sure to use a private browser when you try for yourself, as explained in the video.
2. Your Information Is Being Sold
I can say with certainty that if you listed FSBO on Zillow, your phone probably rang off the hook with agent calls for at least the first week. Many of those agents will say they have buyers now, but won’t bring them to visit. Others will say they monitor the neighborhood activity and the inventory in the neighborhood. Some will bring you complimentary market data reports, etc. Be very cautious… they are trying to get to know you and eventually convert you into their listing at a cost that is usually too high. FSBOs are known to be extremely lucrative for agents because many FSBO sellers decide that it’s too hard to sell by owner and list with an agent.
3. The system is set up for you to fail
Agents bank on this. The agent community as a whole despises FSBOs and they think your equity is their paycheck. Some will even be rude if you tell them you won’t list with them. Agent’s know that as long as you’re getting bombarded by phone calls, you will probably get overwhelmed and ask for their help. Usually the agent that bombarded you carefully with a smile who successfully infiltrated you by building a relationship will be the one seller’s select to list. Because of this they will not stop. It’s a numbers game to them and they make upwards of a hundred phone calls a day until they get the one that gets them the nice commission payout.
Sad but true… Zillow’s FSBO policy makes it impossible to test the market
It’s common for seller’s to attempt to test the market using Zillow. The problem is, if your home is not exposed to buyers who are actively searching the market, your results will be poor. Since you are likely in Zillow’s trap with a hidden listing and exposed personal information, you may want to proceed with caution and be careful who you trust.
At Homepie, we understand the ins and outs of selling by owner and we are banking on your success.
Give us a chance to show you how our system works and you’ll be glad you did.