Should you rely on online sale and rental estimates?

There is no shortage of online platforms for real estate, such as Zillow or Redfin. These platforms don’t just offer to list your home for rent or sale but they give you estimated values for both. Many homeowners will glance at these and either be over the top excited or, well, disappointed. They will use the figures presented as the basis for their important decisions. What should you know about the values you see?

The values you see are based on certain data – prior sales or rental properties that have leased that are now compared against your home – based on information that is public record. While the information may not be entirely incorrect, there are things to keep in mind before you base an important decision such as renting or selling your home on the information you see.

An appreciating market may not be reflected in an online platform. A sudden appreciation in real estate values, both sale and rental, may not be taken into consideration in the data that is presented. Remember, online platforms use data and averages. So, it is not uncommon for a market to change quickly and an online platform not keep up. This could leave you short changed, especially when there is demand and buyers are willing to pay more than what perhaps comparable properties are selling for. A Realtor can help you determine which direction a market is heading and what a strong competitive price would be.

The same is true if a market is cooling off. In that situation, you may decide to wait until the market appreciates again. Realistic numbers based on real conditions is key to help you make the best decision possible.

Property values, both sales and rentals, are affected by the upgrades and improvements a homeowner makes. These may not be reflected in an online platform and undervalue your home. The opposite is true as well. If a property is in need of updating and repairs, the value presented may be more than what the property can sell or rent for. Having a specialist to help you take into consideration your circumstances and property can help you make the best decision possible.
All in all, the human touch in real estate is still a necessity. Be sure to rely on the experts in the field to help you make the best decision possible with your most expensive investment.

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

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