Zillow is using its “Zestimate” to streamline its process for making cash offers on some homes.
The Seattle-based listings giant will now allow homeowners in certain markets to receive a cash offer sight-unseen, CNN reported. The rest of the process will stay largely as it was: The initial offer would still be subject to a subsequent inspection and potential adjustment — and Zillow’s not-insignificant fee.
The move to streamline the cash offer process amounts to a greater reliance on the Zestimate and may signal Zillow’s growing confidence in the home-valuation tool. Zillow COO Jeremy Wacksman told CNN Business that the company seeks to reach “one-click nirvana.”
“(It’s about) making the real estate transaction experience more seamless, more easy, more integrated,” Wacksman said.
Currently, homeowners in some locations can fill out a questionnaire, send in photos and get a cash offer from Zillow within days. Zillow then sends an inspector to the home to assess needed repairs and adjust the offer. Zillow charges sellers a fee that averages about 7.5 percent.
Zillow’s home-valuation tool, which is based on comparable sales data and public records, has stirred controversy over the years. In 2020 a judge dismissed a suit that alleged Zillow broke antitrust law by allowing some partners to move the Zestimate to a less-prominent position on the online listing.
[CNN] — Georgia Kromrei