Zillow or Trulia? Which do you prefer?

22 Replies

Happy 4th BP'ers!

Would love feedback on which site you prefer and why for property information. AND...if there are others (realtor.com), let me know. I know the zestimates aren't that reliable. Looking for feedback on both rental and sale info. 

Neither. The MLS is the way to go.

The most accurate info will more than likely come from the MLS. It's best to find a good realtor who will forward you updated MLS info everyday based on your criteria. It's easy for them because the process is automated. But make sure you hold up your end of the bargain by allowing that realtor to represent you when it comes to submitting an offer that came from their MLS forwarding.

Out of the listing sites, redfin is usually the most accurately updated.

When looking for property information, I like to type addresses into Trulia because they have a section where they scrape the most recent public records for the respective property. 

And trulia will show price history, but not sure about rental history

@James Wise

Totally agree with you James. I have access here in the DC area but was curious other areas I am considering. My ROI here might end up being less than zero!! Crazy prices here right now.

Originally posted by @Chris D. :

@James Wise

Totally agree with you James. I have access here in the DC area but was curious other areas I am considering. My ROI here might end up being less than zero!! Crazy prices here right now.

I would contact local agents in the areas you are looking to target. Get yourself on the MLS drips. The info is so much newer than whats on Zillow and Trulia.

@Akeem Ogle :

Hi Akeem. Thanks for the feeback. I wasn't very aware of Redfin so I'll look into that. I agree with you about MLS.

True the MLS has the most accurate info, but for those of us that do not have access to the MLS (like me) I use Redfin first, Zillow and Trulia. Ill take what I find to my agent after I do some leg work myself. I think he would kill me if I bombed him 20 listings or so a day for him to check the MLS for. Since you are in Falls Church I believe Redfin covers your area. Redfin, to me, is more current than Zillow or Trulia. I use all of them to get general info, previous sales in the area, assessments, crime stats, tax records etc.,.

Hi all,

As a Broker in Manhattan, we don't use the MLS. If you're in Florida or NYC, I recommend Streeteasy.com.



@Barry Herbst I don't see how this STREETEASY.COM is a site for Florida. It's all NYC.

Originally posted by @Daria B. :

@Barry HerbstI don't see how this STREETEASY.COM is a site for Florida. It's all NYC.

 Ah they actually just removed Florida about a month ago... currently it's just NYC, Northern NJ and the Hamptons. 

Agree that MLS is the only true reading on asking prices and comps. Good luck.

Redfin is the best site. Although it doesnt show properties for some areas.

I use zillow. It's been my experience that zillow is used by mortgage brokers for a baseball figure's in regards to refi's. Zillow also shows recent sales.

This post has been removed.

I like redfin's cma tool. Maps and charts provided with tool are great quick reference tools I use to analyze potential deals.

Hey @Chris D. , @James Wise said it, the MLS is the place to go for accurate values.

For rents: craigslist (use the map tool), rentometer, zillow and the MLS are all good tools. I also reach out to local property managers. If they have a decent amount of properties under management, they'll be able to give you a very accurate rent estimate.

Trulia is awesome for demographics:  You can see crime, school ratings, percentage of home ownership, a lot of great information.

MLS is going to have the most accurate and current market data in Florida. Zillow is great for fantasyland. I looked up our personal residence and their "value" was easily 25% over market. Zillow is now owned by Trulia and hopefully some time in the future changes will be made to improve accuracy.

@Andrew Davis Thanks. Good to know about the demographics on Trulia. 

@Account Closed Thanks for the info. about Redfin....hadn't thought about that. Will check it out. 

like most said, the MLS will give you the best data.

I like realtor.com best (besides the MLS) because when looking a building with more than one unit (most of the times, in my area) I can see the amenities and rent of each unit.

I like trulia too bescase (in my area) I can search for "mulit family"  and zoom in on the area I am looking in and it will show me all Propertes that are "mulit family" even if they are on for sale.

Zillow is my last choice for finding properties bescase the "zestiment" can be way off, but I do like the morgage calculator.

Buy the way I have accounts for all three websites and have their apps on my ipad, I suggest you do the same, maybe not the ipad part, I think you should have all website accounts because I seen Propertes on one website and not seen it on a other one.

Hope this helps.

Updated over 3 years ago

I forgot to mention that realtor.com also has street view, with is like driving for dollars on your couch!

@Chris D. Might have to check that out. Also some Tax Assessors Offices have previous sales recorded for the neighborhood that a home is located in. Some do give out a wealth of info, some wont and just give you the basics.

@Tristan C. Hi. Lots of good tips in your response. Thanks. 

Another tip for those of you who are real estate licensees and have direct access to MLS. You can use National Association of Realtors (NAR) Realtors Property Resource to get information on properties outside of your subscription area. RPR has some demographic info. and also now has information on commercial properties. The drawback is that NAR allows individual brokers to opt out (i.e. to exclude their listings from the database) so the RPR data often does not offer a complete picture when it comes to available and sold comps. Realtors can go to the RPR site, sign up and take the webinars to learn about the product with is FREE for all NAR realtors.

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