Zillow Listing Fees in 2024: Are They Worth the Cost?

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By Jamie Ayers Updated February 5, 2024
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Edited by Steve Nicastro

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There are no Zillow listing fees, whether you’re selling for sale by owner (FSBO) or with a real estate agent. For those looking to post premium rental listings, Zillow charges $29.99.

But deciding if Zillow is the right platform for your sale involves considering several key factors. FSBO listings on Zillow come with specific challenges that could potentially impact the success of your sale:

  • Limited visibility. FSBO properties are not prominently displayed in Zillow's main search results, which may reduce the likelihood of your home attracting the attention of prospective buyers.
  • Missing out on MLS. Listing on Zillow do not automatically appear on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). The MLS is "the number one source for sellers to list their homes,"[1] so if your home isn't on the MLS, most buyer's agents won't see it.
  • The value of realtor expertise. While hiring a real estate agent involves certain fees, their expertise often leads to higher sale prices and smoother sales processes. Last year, FSBO homes sold for a median of $310,000, almost $100,000 less than agent-assisted homes at $405,000.[2]

The good news is that you don't have to be alone in this journey alone.

Clever Real Estate offers a smarter way to sell your home. Partner with a top local agent and enjoy full-service support for just half the typical listing fee. Imagine saving thousands while still getting the expert guidance your home sale deserves.

» Ready to maximize your sale with minimal fees? Get connected to a Clever agent today and start the journey to a successful sale.

How much are Zillow listing fees?

Type of listingCost
FSBOFree
Agent-representedFree
RentalFree
Premium rental$29.99 (one-time fee)
Show more

Zillow FSBO fees

There are no fees to create a FSBO listing on Zillow. But there is a catch: FSBO listings are harder for buyers to find on the site.

That’s because Zillow displays agent listings by default and separates FSBO listings under a "By owner & other" filter. This move complies with a National Association of Realtors (NAR) policy that prevents MLS listings from being mixed with non-MLS properties.[3]

Zillow FSBO filter

Because of the separation, FSBO listings on Zillow receive less exposure compared to agent-listed properties. In fact, Zillow found that pageviews of FSBO listings decreased by about 80–85% after the company moved those listings to a separate section of the site.[4]

While posting a FSBO listing on Zillow is free, it comes at the cost of far fewer potential buyers ever seeing that listing.

🏛️ Zillow lawsuit resolved

Zillow's policy of separating FSBO listings complies with NAR guidelines. But the policy has been controversial and was a key issue in an antitrust lawsuit involving NAR and REX Real Estate. In 2023, a judge ruled that Zillow's method of displaying non-MLS listings wasn't misleading.

How to list on Zillow for sale by owner

  1. Create a Zillow profile or log in.
  2. Find your home by looking up your address on Zillow (chances are it’s already in the company's database).
  3. In the Public view, click "More" → "List For Sale By Owner." If you haven’t already claimed this property as your own, you’ll be prompted to do so before continuing.
  4. On the FSBO Listing page, set a list price, upload photos, write a listing description, edit home facts, and add your contact information.
  5. Once everything is ready, click "Post For Sale By Owner" and submit your listing for Zillow’s review.
  6. Before publishing your listing, Zillow will verify the information you provided — and that you actually own the property. This can take up to 72 hours.

» MORE: How to sell your house for sale by owner

Zillow fees for listing with an agent

Real estate agents can list properties on Zillow for free. When an agent posts a home on the MLS, it automatically gets republished on Zillow and other major real estate sites.

Listing with an agent on the MLS and Zillow increases visibility, attracting 500 times more visitors compared to FSBO properties advertised only on Zillow. This wider exposure through the MLS leads to a much larger pool of potential buyers.

Zillow is free — but your agent isn’t

When you list with an agent, you have to pay realtor commission when your home sells. 

The average total real estate commission is 5.49% nationwide, while listing agents earn an average commission of 2.83%, according to Clever's annual survey of realtors.

However, you can pay less without sacrificing service by using a discount real estate broker. These brokers provide service comparable to traditional firms — but at lower rates. 

For example, Clever Real Estate partners with full-service listing agents who charge only 1.5%, or close to half the average cost of hiring a listing agent nationwide. These agents can showcase your property on Zillow and other websites to drive maximum visibility.

👋 Get the same agents for less

Clever matches you with top local realtors from trusted brands — like Keller Williams and RE/MAX — for a discounted listing fee of just 1.5%. You get the same full service and support, but for about half the usual rate!

Ready to find the perfect agent and save thousands on commission? Enter your zip code below to get started.

Zillow rental listing fees

Zillow Rentals Network is a free platform that gives landlords tools to manage rental properties. When you sign up, your rental gets listed on Zillow, Trulia, and HotPads.

The platform also includes features for:

  • Screening tenants, including background checks and income verification
  • Creating leases with e-signatures
  • Collecting rent through direct deposits

The basic version of Zillow Rentals Network is free, but you can upgrade to a premium listing for a one-time fee of $29.99. According to Zillow, premium listings get increased visibility.

How to list a rental property on Zillow

1. Create a Zillow account

Create a Zillow account and check the box "I am a landlord or industry professional."

create a zillow account

2. Find the Rental Manager

Post a rental on Zillow through Zillow’s Rental Manager, which you can find at the top of Zillow’s homepage.

Find the rental manager

3. Create your listing

Click on "Post your properties for free," and add the address and some other basic info about your rental property. Click "Create listing."

create your listing

4. Upload photos and key info

Add more specific details about your listing, such as the monthly rent, size of the property, rules, tour availability, and amenities. You can also add photos and videos.

upload photos and key info

5. Publish your listing

After you verify your phone number, click "Publish Listing" at the bottom of the page. Your listing will be published on Zillow, Trulia, and HotPads.

publish listing

Is listing FSBO on Zillow worth it?

Pros

  • Listing FSBO on Zillow is free.
  • Zillow is the most popular real estate website, with 60 million monthly visitors.
  • Your listing gets syndicated to Trulia.com, the second most popular real estate site in the US.

Cons

  • There's less visibility for listings that don’t have an agent.
  • You’re competing with thousands of other local listings. Most of them are created by experienced agents, which gives them the upper hand.
  • You don't have an agent screening inquiries on your behalf. Expect to field a ton of calls and emails from casual or unqualified parties.
  • You’ll likely still have to pay a buyer's agent commission, since many buyers who use Zillow have a realtor.
  • You’ll get inundated with phone calls from agents trying to convince you to sell with them instead.

Posting on Zillow is usually worth it for the online exposure.

Most home buyers (96%) use the internet to search for homes, and many buyers start their search on Zillow. Zillow is the biggest real estate website, with 60 million monthly visitors. That's about 20 million more than Realtor.com and 40 million more than Trulia.[5]

When buyers search for homes on websites like Zillow, they often first scroll through photos from a desktop or mobile device. Then they find an agent to help them view homes in person.

However, posting FSBO on Zillow has limitations. For example, Zillow listings aren't automatically posted on the MLS. You'll need to hire a flat fee MLS listing service to do that for you.

FSBO homes sell for less

Recent data shows that FSBO homes tend to sell for less than homes with an agent.

  • Clever Real Estate reported that in 2022 and 2023, people who sold their homes with the help of an agent pocketed almost $50,000 more on average than those who sold FSBO.
  • The National Association of Realtors found that in 2022, FSBO homes stayed on the market longer and sold for about $100,000 less than homes sold through a realtor.[6]

If you sell FSBO, the potential loss in your sale price could outweigh your savings from not paying realtor fees. 

You can use an agent and save money

If you're unsure about selling FSBO, consider selling with a low-cost realtor instead. You don't have to pay high commission fees to get the support of a full-service agent.

For example, Clever Real Estate can connect you with top agents from well-known brands like Keller Williams and RE/MAX. If you move forward with an agent, you'll pay a low 1.5% listing fee instead of the standard 2.5–3%.

Your agent will ensure your home gets listed on the MLS and other key real estate sites. They'll also use their expertise and connections to help you maximize your profit.

» Connect with local agents for free, with no obligation

Tips for listing your home FSBO on Zillow

1. Invest in professional photos

About 85% of all home buyers think photos are the most useful feature on real estate websites.[7] And a Redfin study revealed that professionally photographed homes in the $400,000 price range sold three weeks faster and for over $10,000 more than those with amateur photos.[8]

In real estate, it's crucial to make a strong first impression online. Using professional photographs to showcase your home, especially key features like a renovated kitchen or bathroom, can quicken the selling process and increase your profit.

2. Use a flat fee MLS service

You need to post your home on the MLS if you want your listing to reach a wider audience. The MLS is the top spot for listing homes, with about 86% of all sellers using it. However, only 3% of FSBO sellers list on the MLS.[9]

On Zillow, FSBO listings are usually in a separate, less popular section than agented listings. But you can get your FSBO listing on the main listing section by using a flat fee MLS service.

Like an agent, a flat fee MLS company can get your house on the MLS — and, in turn, on Zillow’s main listing directory — but it offers few of the other services agents provide. A flat fee MLS can cost $100–1,000, depending on the level of service.

3. Write a great listing description

Your listing description is one of the best opportunities to sell people on the idea of your home. Emphasize the unique features and selling points that make your property stand out. And make sure your description is accurate and honest to build trust with potential buyers.

Also pay attention to details like spelling and grammar. Consider using a spell-checker or having someone review your work to ensure it's error-free and presents your home in the best light.

4. Price your home well

Pricing your home right is key. Set the price too high and you’ll struggle to find a buyer. Too low and you could leave thousands of dollars on the table.

Online home value estimators, like Zestimate, aren't the best way to get an accurate home value. They often fail to factor in recent upgrades or major repairs, and they're prone to errors.

Instead, keep an eye on what other homes are selling for near you — especially those that are similar to yours in terms of size, age, and renovations. You can search Zillow to view recently sold homes in your area.

For the most accurate home pricing, consider requesting a comparative market analysis (CMA) from a realtor. A CMA takes into account your home's unique features, upgrades, local market trends, and recent sale prices of similar properties nearby.

» Request a free home valuation from a local agent

5. Accept offers only from pre-approved buyers

For FSBO sellers, one of the biggest problems with Zillow is that it’s open to the public, which includes both qualified and unqualified buyers.

On the MLS, buyers typically work with licensed agents and are often pre-approved for financing by mortgage lenders. But on Zillow, the situation is less predictable. Sometimes sellers go through inspections, negotiations, and extensive paperwork only to have the deal collapse at the last minute due to the buyer's financial instability.

6. Don’t rely on just Zillow

About 86% of sellers list their home with a licensed real estate agent or broker, while only 10% sell FSBO.[7] That means most of your competitors’ listings are likely getting published across hundreds of other websites and advertising channels, which gives them a much better chance of capturing the attention of your ideal buyer.

If you’re trying to sell your home FSBO, you’ll need to hustle — that means posting on as many sites as possible, spreading the word on social media and among family, friends, and co-workers, posting signs and passing out flyers, and doing anything else you can do to boost your home's visibility and attract local buyers.

FAQ about listing a home on Zillow

What is Zillow?

Zillow is the nation’s leading online real estate marketplace, based on monthly website traffic.

Zillow offers a wide array of products and services. However, its foremost is a massive real estate database, consisting of more than 135 million U.S. properties for sale, for rent, or off-market.

Unlike many other real estate websites, Zillow is accessible to the public. Agents, buyers, sellers, and casual browsers can use the site to view listing information, look up estimated property values (which Zillow calls "Zestimates"), assess local market conditions, and more.

How much does it cost to list on Zillow?

Listing a house FSBO on Zillow is free. It's also free to list with an agent on the site. But Zillow gives more visibility to homes listed on the multiple listing service (MLS), so keep this in mind if you're selling for sale by owner. A flat fee MLS listing service will put your home on the MLS for as little as a few hundred dollars, or you can sell with a low-commission real estate agent to get the benefits of a traditional realtor for a fraction of the price.

How accurate is Zillow's pricing estimate?

Zillow Zestimates can vary in accuracy. The company reports a median error rate of 2.4% for homes currently on the market, while off-market homes have a higher median error rate of 7.49%. For a home valued at $500,000, the Zestimate could be off by $12,000–37,450.

Zillow's algorithm is based on data like square footage and number of bedrooms, but the information isn't always accurate. Also, Zillow valuations may not always reflect recent home improvements or renovations.

How does Zillow make money?

Zillow primarily generates revenue through real estate agents who buy advertising space or purchase buyer leads on its website. Zillow also makes money from networking fees when buyers connect with sellers via Zillow-affiliated agents.

Another revenue stream for Zillow is its involvement in the mortgage market through Zillow Home Loans, although this business only accounted for about 5% of its total revenue in the third quarter of 2023.

Should you claim your home on Zillow?

If you're considering selling now or in the future, claiming your property on Zillow can be beneficial. You can update property details to improve the Zestimate's accuracy, which is especially useful when you're ready to list your home.

Will Zillow buy my house?

No, Zillow no longer buys houses. Zillow formerly had an iBuyer program called Zillow Offers, which allowed homeowners to sell their houses directly to Zillow. This program shut down in November 2021.

Why trust us

I've been writing about real estate professionally for nearly a decade. I've written and edited dozens of guides about discount real estate brokerages, agent matching services, and real estate technology.

To create this guide, I drew on over 100 hours of collective research from Clever’s editorial team — including analysis of the service offerings and business models of various real estate technology companies.

I also interviewed Clever’s in-house real estate experts who have expertise in listing homes on Zillow:

  • Ben Mizes, real estate investor and Clever CEO
  • Luke Babich, real estate investor and Clever COO
  • Todd Stolte, real estate investor and licensed agent
  • Justin Lindsey, licensed agent

We also drew heavily from the research of real estate tech analyst Mike DelPrete. If you’re interested in learning more about Zillow (and other real estate tech platforms), we particularly recommend the following reads:

This article has also been reviewed and edited by Steve Nicastro, a content lead at Clever Real Estate. As a former real estate agent in South Carolina, Steve has extensive experience in assisting home buyers, particularly with FSBO properties on Zillow.

About Clever Real Estate

Clever is a free online platform with the goal of educating consumers about real estate and helping them save money when buying or selling a home. We strive to give 100% objective advice to help you make better real estate decisions.

Learn more about Clever’s editorial policy and how we make money.

If you have more questions about finding realtors (or Clever’s service), our licensed Concierge Team is standing by seven days a week, 7 a.m.–9 p.m. CST, at 1-833-225-3837.

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Article Sources

[1] National Association of Realtors – "Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends Report". Pages 121.
[2] National Association of Realtors – "2023 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers".
[3] National Association of Realtors – "MLS Clear Cooperation Policy".
[4] REX – "REX - Real Estate Exch. v. Zillow Inc.". Updated Aug. 16, 2023.
[6] National Association of Realtors – "2022 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers". Pages 8.
[7] National Association of Realtors – "Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends Report". Pages 56. Updated 2023.
[9] National Association of Realtors – "Quick Real Estate Statistics". Updated Oct. 31, 2023.

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