For those who don’t know, Zillow.com is a rapidly-growing listings aggregator in the U.S who also provide a unique and automated home valuation estimator tool (called Zestimates) for almost any property in the United States. Zillow’s Zestimates are calculated using an estimated 40,000 listings it currently holds in its database.
Meanwhile, the Zillow home valuation estimator is about to get a whole lot more accurate with news that it has secured partnerships with 11 major newspaper companies totaling 282 newspapers across the United States.
This agreement will extend offline content like classified listings and open house information to Zillow, and to share Zillow’s online data and tools with newspaper Web sites. (Note: Pat Kitano over at the Transparent Real Estate blog provides a more in-depth analysis of this news announcement.)
Barton, who apparently owns a vacation home in Whistler, B.C. has undoubtedly been scoping out the opportunities up north as per his plans to extend its reach ever deeper into the industry. Although details are limited on the move into Canada, he did indicate that the challenge will be to get the necessary home data from the real estate industry up here.
Challenging indeed. It is pretty much a certainty that the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) will have little to no interest in sharing their listings data with anyone, as it will dilute the current value of their mls.ca website.
However, it will only be a matter of time before individual brokers from across the country begin to feed their listings to aggregators like Zillow (and other Canadian-friendly aggregators) in an effort to reach an ever-growing Internet audience.