Zillow, an American online real estate and rental marketplace, entered Canada in October and has been growing steadily ever since.
“In Canada, we have for-sale listings on Zillow.com and Zillow’s mobile app,” said Zillow Group chief industry development officer Errol Samuelson. “Home shoppers can search for properties by typing in a postal code, city, neighbourhood or province, and by circling an area on a map.
“Home shoppers can use Zillow’s comprehensive search filters to customize their search. We also use artificial intelligence to recommend homes that shoppers might like.”
Real estate agents whose brokerages, or MLS, send listings to the platform can post a home description and photos for free. They can receive leads on listings and create profiles to build their brand, promote their listings and establish themselves as local experts by showcasing consumer reviews for no charge.
Zillow’s Canadian clients
HomeLife Real Estate Canada, Sage Real Estate, Your Choice Realty, Coldwell Banker Mountain Central, Coldwell Banker Ronan Realty, Royal Heritage Realty, Sam McDadi Real Estate, Sutton Group Heritage Realty Inc., TrilliumWest Real Estate and Right at Home Realty are the Canadian companies which have thus far signed listing agreements with the Seattle-based firm.
“We believe there’s a massive opportunity to help connect Canadian real estate professionals and their listings with Zillow’s audience, and we’re thrilled by the interest we’ve received from our partners and their members around Zillow’s plans for Canada,” said Samuelson.
“Canadian listings on Zillow are of interest to our audience, including the millions of U.S. and international buyers who use Zillow, and will help increase exposure to Canadian homes for sale — benefiting both home sellers and industry professionals.
“We also believed there was an opportunity to help home shoppers via our technology. In the U.S., two-thirds of Zillow’s audience is on mobile devices. We believe we can offer a better mobile search experience to Canadians.”
Zillow’s other offerings
Zillow, which launched in 2006, has relationships with thousands of brokerages and hundreds of multiple listings services in the U.S. In addition to Zillow.com, Zillow Group operates more than two dozen real estate applications related to buying, selling, renting, financing, remodelling and more across all major platforms in the U.S. Its sites average more than 186 million unique visitors each month.
Zillow claims to have a living database of more than 110 million U.S. homes — including homes for sale, homes for rent and homes not currently on the market, as well as Zestimate home values, Rent Zestimates and other home-related information.
A Zestimate home valuation is Zillow’s estimated market value, which is computed using a proprietary formula calculated from public and user-submitted data. It takes special features, location and market conditions into account. Zillow also provides a Rent Zestimate, which estimates monthly rental prices.
The company has big plans to continue its Canadian expansion, according to Samuelson.
“To paraphrase Pierre Trudeau, ‘just watch us.’ We have a big team developing new technology and features that we plan to launch in 2019 and 2020, and we are excited to partner with the Canadian industry to deliver a great home shopping experience for consumers.”