How to Use Zillow

by Lane Cummings; Updated September 26, 2017
Zillow may be able to help you buy or sell a home.

Zillow is an online real estate tool that assists both home buyers and home sellers by allowing users to complete a variety of tasks involving home-related searches. For example, on Zillow you can examine current mortgage rates, view homes presently on the market, look for home prices, determine home values, and find lists and data of homes that were recently sold. Zillow is a highly dynamic site that can be used in a variety of ways depending on whether you're a home buyer, renter, home seller or otherwise have an interest in the real estate market.

Home Buyers and Renters

Step 1

Type in the ZIP code, neighborhood or city and state of the area in which you're looking to buy a home or rent an apartment. Alternatively, you can start making financial plans to purchase a home by visiting the home page of the website and checking mortgage rates.

Step 2

Check the listings and compare the asking price with the "Zestimate." The "Zestimate" is the website's estimated market value of a piece of property, based on a unique formula. If the asking price is below the "Zestimate," you know you're getting a good deal.

Step 3

Examine each listing, looking at the attached picture, the square footage and the estimated walk score that Zillow has assigned it. Make appointments to see properties that you're interested in by using the displayed contact information.

Home Sellers

Step 1

Register by clicking on the "Register" link at the top right-hand area of the page. Put in your name, email address and secret password.

Step 2

Enter facts about your home such as number of bathrooms, square footage, year it was built, as well as uploading any pictures you have of the home.

Step 3

Price your home or have a Zillow agent price it for you. Pay to list your home by entering your credit card information and accepting a $39.95 charge to list it for 180 days (cost as of July 2011).

Step 4

Create an ad for your home to increase your chance of getting buyers. Choose the area where you want to run your ad as well as the content you want it to showcase. All ads run for 30 days.

About the Author

Lane Cummings is originally from New York City. She attended the High School of Performing Arts in dance before receiving her Bachelor of Arts in literature and her Master of Arts in Russian literature at the University of Chicago. She has lived in St. Petersburg, Russia, where she lectured and studied Russian. She began writing professionally in 2004 for the "St. Petersburg Times."

Photo Credits

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