SEATTLE, June 27, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Zillow® launched the most sophisticated and accurate Zestimate® home valuation in history today, using real-time data and computer vision to identify and value improvements to individual homes.
The Zestimate revolutionized real estate when it launched in 2006, using facts from public records to estimate a home’s value. With today’s update, it can now, in a sense, “see” in photographs features that humans would instantly understand, such as curb appeal and natural light. The new Zestimate uses neural networks and computer vision to distinguish between high and low-end finishes and to incorporate the value of features like updated bathroom fixtures, fireplaces, and remodeled kitchens. The Zestimate also now uses real-time data from for-sale homes, including list price and how long a home has been on the market.
Today’s launch incorporates winning ideas from Zillow Prize®, a two-year, $1 million data science competition. For homes listed for sale, the error rate is now less than 2%, meaning half of all Zestimates fall within 2% of the home’s eventual sale price. Sellers, listing agents, and homeowners provide photos for the Zestimate to evaluate. Homeowners can claim their home on Zillow to edit, add, or remove photos at any time in just a few simple clicks.
While the Zestimate can’t interpret home features by name, the way a human would, the image recognition model can classify patterns in the pixels of photographs and correlate them to home value. For example, while the human eye sees tile or granite countertops, the Zestimate identifies two different pixel patterns.
“The new Zestimate was inspired by the way the human brain interprets scenes, objects, and images,” said Stan Humphries, Chief Analytics Officer and creator of the Zestimate. “It’s a big leap forward, because it means the Zestimate can now understand not just a home’s facts and figures, but its quality and curb appeal. By training neural networks using the millions of home photos on Zillow, the Zestimate now values the features people are most proud of – like new granite countertops, a remodeled bathroom, or a meticulously landscaped backyard.”
About the Zestimate
The Zestimate is a starting point in determining a home’s value and is not an official appraisal. Zillow calculates Zestimates for more than 100 million homes nationwide. The company’s 13 years of experience estimating home values is an important aspect of Zillow Offers®, Zillow’s home-buying and selling program, and fulfilling its mission to change the way people buy and sell homes. In eligible Zillow Offers markets, Zillow buys a house, prepares it for showings, and then quickly lists it for sale – all on the consumer’s timeline. The Zestimate is not impacted by a homeowner asking for, accepting, or declining an offer from Zillow on their home, and receiving an offer will not change the Zestimate.
Recently more than 3,800 data science teams from 91 countries competed in the Zillow Prize competition to improve the accuracy of the Zestimate. The ideas from the winning solution include sophisticated machine learning techniques to identify and take into account special home features and location details, such as number of bathroom fixtures, commute times, and even a home’s proximity to a park or freeway.
To calculate the Zestimate, Zillow uses data from county and tax assessor records, and direct feeds from hundreds of multiple listing services and brokerages. Additionally, homeowners have the ability to update facts about their home to ensure their Zestimate has the most accurate, up-to-date information. More than 70 million homes on Zillow have been updated by the community of users. The Zestimate uses artificial intelligence and other advanced technologies such as computer vision and a deep-learning-based neural network to incorporate data from photographs into the Zestimate. These multiple data sources, accumulated over the past 13 years, and the data underlying the Zestimate provide Zillow with both a comprehensive representation of the U.S. housing stock and an incredible data advantage.
Visit www.zillow.com/zestimate to learn more about how Zillow calculates your Zestimate.
Zillow® is transforming how people buy, sell, rent and finance homes by creating seamless real estate transactions for today’s on-demand consumer. Zillow operates the largest online real estate and rental marketplace, attracting more than 181 million monthly visitors because it is a trusted source for data and information among both consumers and real estate professionals.
Zillow’s data, technology and industry partnerships put Zillow at nearly every major point of the home shopping experience, helping consumers search for and get into their new home faster. For buyers and sellers, Zillow Offers and Zillow Home Loans are meeting consumer demand for an easy, low-hassle and predictable real estate transaction. Zillow Premier Agent® instantly connects buyers and sellers with its network of real estate professionals to help guide them through home shopping process. For renters, Zillow’s innovations are streamlining the way people search, tour, apply and pay rent for leased properties.
In addition to Zillow.com, Zillow operates the most popular suite of mobile real estate apps, with more than two dozen apps across all major platforms. Launched in 2006, Zillow is owned and operated by Zillow Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:Z and ZG) and headquartered in Seattle.
Zillow, Zillow Offers, Zillow Prize, Premier Agent, and Zestimate are registered trademarks of Zillow, Inc.