Both Zillow and Trulia have popular online estimator tools that can give you a ballpark idea of your home's current market value. But, like all free online tools, they have a significant margin for error — and you shouldn't rely on them solely when you're setting a listing price for your home.
The best way to find out your home's worth is to get a detailed comparative market analysis (CMA) from an experienced local real estate agent. Get a free home valuation from a top agent near you today!
But if you're just looking to get a ballpark idea of your home's value, we recommend comparing estimates from multiple online home value estimators. Getting multiple quotes will help you weed out any outliers that are pulling from outdated information and give you a better idea of your home's current value.
Home Value Estimator
Similarities Between Zillow and Trulia
Zillow and Trulia are owned by the same parent company (Zillow Group) and each site allows you to look at listings of homes for sale. The two sites alike display “featured” homes, which are listed by agents who pay to have their listings appear at the top of the search results and to have their agent profiles displayed alone instead of alongside those of competing agents.
Additionally, both sites also display county public records on properties, and let homeowners correct facts about their homes online. Getting public records fixed, however, requires contacting the county assessor’s office.
Differences Between Zillow and Trulia
When searching for a home, Zillow lets you filter by year built or lot area. Trulia offers a few more filter options when compared to Zillow, including price-reduced date, dollar amount or percentage, price per square foot, Transit Score, number of photos, or popularity.
Both Zillow and Trulia allow you to limit your search to homes within a specified price range and sort search-result listings by newest, price, number of bedrooms or bathrooms and square footage.
Both sites make it extremely easy for you to see comparable listings and recently sold homes near a specific property, however, there are definitely some major differences between the two sites to take note of.
Zillow offers a nifty feature that Trulia does not have; the Zestimate home value is Zillow's estimated market value for an individual home and is calculated for about 100 million homes throughout the nation. This tool is a starting point in determining a home's value. It is important to note that this is not an official appraisal.
The Zestimate is automatically computed on a daily basis, collecting information on millions of public and user-submitted data points. Zillow also provides a Rent Zestimate with a home's estimated monthly rental price.
Zillow’s housing payment calculator is a great resource; it actually includes taxes, homeowners insurance, and mortgage insurance, if applicable. It doesn’t just show you an ultra-low monthly mortgage payment.
Zillow’s Zestimates can also be useful for investors or even those deciding between renting vs. owning. Zillow even provides an abundance of real estate listings, complete with photos, sales history, tax information, and even a housing payment estimate.
Because it's owned by the same parent company as Zillow, Trulia's home value estimator tool will provide the same data as Zillow's Zestimates. The only difference is that Trulia does not provide estimates for properties that are currently on the market.
Like other home value estimator tools, Zillow and Trulia's estimates are useful for getting a general idea of your home's worth — but they might not be completely accurate.
We recommend getting multiple quotes from different home value estimator tools to get a better idea of your home's true market value.
Home Value Estimator
What sets these two sites apart is their local map view data, but let’s start with the similarities: Both Trulia and Zillow alike display Walk Scores and ratings of nearby schools from GreatSchools.org with individual listings and display trends in area home prices.
Trulia takes the lead here: With Trulia, you can see comparable sales, nearby schools, crimes, amenities, and transit, all on a map next to the property you’re considering. This data can help you get a better idea of a property’s surroundings, which goes beyond standard real estate listings.
Accuracy of Estimates
Zillow’s Data Accuracy
Zillow is forthcoming about how accurate its estimates are; the site displays a range of possible high and low values when you click on a particular home. Zillow also uses a star rating system to show users how confident it is about “Zestimates” overall in various metropolitan areas.
Zillow also provides robust data, such as detailed square footage data, selling prices for a given area, and real estate trends. The site provides good insight into house values.
On the downside for Zillow, the site doesn’t display the interest rate assumed to calculate the principal and interest payment; instead, it just links to another page where you can get lender interest rate quotes based on your credit score.
Another fault of Zillow: The site seems to constantly display outdated listings, whether they’ve already sold, are now pending, or taken off the market entirely. Just when you’ve come up with four or five properties you’d like to check out, they come back with “sold,” “pending,” or “bulldozed.” For this reason, in terms of timeliness, Zillow misses the mark.
Trulia’s Data Accuracy
The accuracy of “Trulia Estimates” is continuously monitored by comparing the actual sales prices for recently sold homes over a three-month period with those homes’ estimates at the end of the month prior to sale.
For each county and state, Trulia reports the median absolute error of these differences and the percentage of sales where “Trulia Estimates” were within 5%, 10% and 20% of the final sale prices.
Disadvantages of Both Sites
It doesn’t seem like either company's property tax estimate tells you what you will end up paying in taxes when the property changes ownership — which could wind up being significantly more.
Also, insurance costs can vary by hundreds of dollars. This truly depends on which insurance company you choose, the home’s estimated replacement cost (which is less than the purchase price since homeowners insurance doesn’t cover the land), as well as the deductible you select.
Neither Zillow’s nor Trulia’s monthly payment estimates are likely to reflect what you will actually end up paying. To get an accurate assessment, you will need to consult with a real estate agent, a mortgage lender and an insurance agent.
Both Zillow and Trulia use the same home value data, so their estimates will be the same. However, each company has a different emphasis and may present the data in different ways.
Zillow focuses on the full lifecycle of owning and living in a home; through buying, selling, renting, financing, remodeling and beyond. Trulia on the other hand, retains a narrower focus on the home-search process.
If you're curious about your home's worth, try comparing home value estimates from multiple sources.
Home Value Estimator
Comparative Market Analysis
A comparative market analysis (CMA) is an examination of the prices at which similar properties in the same area recently sold. Real estate agents perform a comparative market analysis for their clients to help them determine the most optimal price to list when selling a home, or a price to offer when buying a home.
Since no two properties are ever identical, agents make adjustments for the differences between the sold properties and the one that is about to be purchased or listed in an effort to determine a fair offer or sale price.
A comparative market analysis is essentially a less-sophisticated version of a formal, more professional appraisal. Sellers should always opt for this approach when it comes time to actually assess the real value of their homes and set a listing price.
Clever Partner Agents will provide a free CMA with no obligation to sign. Contact Clever to learn more and get connected with a top-rated, local agent.