Real estate agents across the country have a love/hate relationship with Zillow that has been going on for many years. Even if you have chosen to be a Zillow Premier agent and pay Zillow for leads, you are still likely frustrated with Zillow and feel like you have no other choice than to give them your money.
In late 2020, Zillow announced plans to hire salaried agents to represent them when they make cash offers to home sellers. After years of denying they would act as a brokerage, this was another step closer to just that.
In another step toward increased Zillow control, Zillow has begun charging agents a weekly fee to post rental listings on Zillow. This has rolled out to different markets at different times so if you haven’t seen it yet, you likely will soon.
On top of these changes, many agents across the country have seen their recent sales and reviews begin to disappear from their Zillow profile. Zillow has always allowed agents to claim past sales in their Zillow profile but some agents have recently seen these disappear for recent transactions.
While these can be added back, they may or may not stay. If your past sales are still showing, it might be a good idea to print them while you have access to them or screen shot them all if you want a record that they were there previously. Assuming Zillow continues to allow agents to manually add past sales, you could add them again later. Some agents have recently readded their recent sales only to see them disappear again so I recommend waiting a couple weeks before you determine if you should do this while we see if Zillow resolves this issue.
While reviews are still showing for most agents, some agents are seeing reviews disappear as well so I recommend you copy and paste your reviews into a Word document while you still have them. You could then manually add them to your website very easily from this document.
Attempts to get answers from Zillow recently about these changes have gotten mixed results. Zillow has told some agents that the recent sales have disappeared because the email address they use in MLS doesn’t match their Zillow email address. While in rare cases, an agent might have coincidentally changed their email address recently, most agents haven’t so this change can’t be attributed to that. We have also received the answer from Zillow stating there is a glitch in the system and they are working on the issue. Many agents also are still waiting to receive any response from Zillow.
As most agents recognize Zillow isn’t the real estate expert the public perceives them to be, the frustration lies in how to change the public perception of Zillow. This can’t and won’t happen overnight. If you happen to be a Zillow Premier agent, you likely haven’t noticed any changes to your account. For the rest of agents, your account has probably already been affected. The best use of your time would be to capture the information currently available in your profile and save it then work to build your online reputation on a platform that you have full control of. If you aren’t sure how to build your online reputation on a safe platform, we are always here to assist you with that process.
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