Facts about Houses Not Listed on Zillow (2022)

Why don’t some houses show up on Zillow?

Are there fake listings on Zillow?

How does Zillow get MLS data?

What are pocket listings?

How often does Zillow update?

Does Zillow have all listings?

Does Zillow show all listings?

When do houses usually go on the market?

How do realtors get listings?

How to find houses before they hit the market?

How to find unlisted homes for sale?

Why don’t some houses show up on Zillow?

While Zillow is one of the most popular real estate websites it’s important to understand that the listings found on it are not usually uploaded by the sellers or real estate agents that are responsible for selling the property. Instead, most of the houses that are found on Zillow are on the website because the listing agent or the owner of the house may have put the listing up in a third-party feed provider and the MLS. An MLS, or Multiple Listing Service, is essentially a database used by real estate brokers to list their for-sale properties. Through the MLS other brokers or prospective buyers may view the listing. As Zillow will need to pull the listing from MLS to make it appear on the website, the process of having a listing appear on Zillow is not always immediate. This is one of the most common reasons that certain houses do not show up on Zillow.

If a property is unlisted, or rather it is privately listed because the owner didn’t want to put the listing up publicly, you may find that the property will not appear on Zillow. This is completely normal, as it was the seller’s request in the first place. These privately listed homes will also not appear on Zillow and may only be made available to a number of close friends or potential buyers by the realtor and the seller.

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Are there fake listings on Zillow?

There may on occasion be fake listings on Zillow. Most commonly these listings are regarding rental properties, but occasionally listings for houses that are for sale may also appear to be fraudulent. If you happen to find one of these fake listings on Zillow you’ll have the option to report them as scam or fraud. This will help take those listings down as Zillow will be made aware of the listing and will be able to take it down. In general, there are several characteristics often present in fraudulent listings.

1. Typos and dramatic stories

If a listing has a lot of typos or contains a dramatic story regarding the reasons that the property was listed, it is likely that the listing is fraudulent, and as such you may have to report it.

2. Personal details are requested

You should never be required to provide your bank account details or Social Security Number to view a listing. If a seller is requesting any of the above details, it’s likely they are a fraudulent seller.

3. Request for verification codes

If you are asked to provide a verification code sent to you by the seller, you are likely looking at a fake listing.

4. Landlord being in a foreign place

Normally, landlords who claim that they are abroad, regardless of the reason for this, are fraudulent and you should take extra care.

5. MoneyGram or Western Union

If there is a request for you to transfer funds to the owner of the property of the listing, you are likely looking at a fake listing or a scam.

How does Zillow get MLS data?

Zillow is an MLS participant, meaning that they are complying with all of the MLS rules. As a result of this, agent listings or other listings posted on MLS databases will be made available on Zillow as Zillow is able to access that database and share the listings found in it.

What are pocket listings?

Pocket listings, or as they are commonly known off-market listings or exclusive listings, are listings that are not posted by the seller or realtor online and made widely public. Instead, these listings are shared with a smaller number of people privately and are not made available to other real estate agents or multiple listing services. Zillow does have a specific program for pocket listings, but sellers looking to sell off-market, may not have been willing to add their listings on the website, which is why you might find that many of these off-market listings are not made available on Zillow.

How often does Zillow update?

There is no standard time for Zillow to update its listings and website. Normally, after a listing has been posted on an MLS website it will take somewhere between 2 and 24 hours for that listing to appear on the Zillow website, but that timeline may vary. If the listing is not properly updated, you may find that the listing that you found on Zillow is no longer available, or that because of this time delay between a house being listed and it appearing on Zillow, you are left looking at houses that are no longer available. This is why it is important to remember that updates on Zillow are not always up-to-date during your search.

Does Zillow have all listings?

Zillow does not have every listing available, and while it may have a number of listings on, the information on those is not always accurate and up-to-date. Many real estate agents and prospective buyers have noted that the listings on Zillow are often outdated and as such don’t serve in finding a new house available in the area that they are looking for. As listings are posted first on MLS and then taken from there into Zillow, there is also a delay between a listing being posted and a listing appearing on Zillow, making the discrepancy between what is and what is not available on the website even wider.

Does Zillow show all listings?

Zillow does not show all listings, and most importantly it does not show all listings immediately. If you are looking up houses for sale in your neighborhood and a new listing has gone up recently on an MLS, that same listing will not show on Zillow until a few hours have passed. This is because there is a delay between listings being made available and them appearing on Zillow. These listings are only one of the kind of listings that will not appear on the side. Pocket listings or listings not available through MLS may also not appear in your Zillow search and as such you may find that you will have to employ different methods so as to secure access to those listings.

Facts about Houses Not Listed on Zillow (1)

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When do houses usually go on the market?

Most houses tend to go on the market around Spring, which makes the best time for you to buy a house around August to September. Of course, this may vary as the real estate market is not 100% predictable, but in most cases, people will list their houses for sale around Spring. This means that if you are looking to negotiate the price on the listing, searching for a house in the late Summer will give you access to a wide number of listings while at the same time, listings that have been on the market for some time.

How do realtors get listings?

Realtors may get a listing in a wide number of different ways. Most commonly, real estate agents with good connections or a good name will usually be contacted by prospective sellers who are looking to sell their homes. Once the seller has decided to use a certain realtor for their listing, they will sign with them and allow for the listing realtor to take any photos required to create a professional-looking listing that will help them sell the house. Having a strong network, is extremely important for real estate agents, especially if they are looking to be able to get more listings and thus, more commissions from the sale of properties.

How to find houses before they hit the market?

Finding houses before they hit the market can be tough, but it can also be extremely rewarding for the buyer, as these houses are often great deals. If you are looking to find a house before it hits the market then some of the best steps you can take are the following:

1. Choose an Agent with Connections

A real estate agent with many connections will be able to assist you with providing you access to off-market listings that they may have. This can be extremely helpful if you are looking to purchase an off-market listing or a house that will be soon put on sale.

2. Be well connected in the neighborhood you are looking to buy

Having personal connections in the neighborhood that you are looking to purchase a house in, may be an excellent way of hearing about a prospective listing early on. This is because word of mouth can often travel much faster than an MLS listing ever could.

3. Houses in Pre-Foreclosure or Foreclosure

Houses in Foreclosure always eventually end up going up for sale, usually through an auction. If you keep an eye out you may be able to find one of these houses before the auction.

4. Network with local builders and constructors

If you want a sure way of being one of the first to know about homes that are being renovated for sale, or constructed for sale before those houses hit the market then you will need to have some friends in the area that are working in construction. They will be able to let you know which houses will be going up for sale soon, way before any real estate agent might.

5. Contact the Homeowner’s association (HOA)

In the area that you are looking to purchase you can contact the HOA to see if there are any houses that will soon go up for sale in that area. Once again, finding one of these listings is all about networking, and as such you will need to connect with as many people as possible to ensure that you will get a chance to view these listings before they go on the market.

6. Door-to-Door networking

If you have tried everything else, and you are still looking to buy a property in a certain area, you may want to consider the possibility of knocking on doors in the area and asking the owners if they are considering selling their property. If the answer is yes then you can arrange a meeting so as to ensure you are one of the first ones to look at the property.

How to find unlisted homes for sale?

Finding pocket listings can be tough as it requires a bit more work from the prospective buyer, especially when compared to simply going online and finding a listing that is already widely in circulation. Still, these listings can be great as they are often good deals and they have fewer prospective buyers making the chance of a bidding war for the house slimmer. If you are looking to find one of these listings you can consider taking the following steps.

1. Contact a well-connected Real Estate Agent in the area you want to buy in

2. Be well connected in the neighborhood you are looking to buy

3. Keep an eye out for Houses in Pre-Foreclosure or Foreclosure

4. Network with local builders and constructors

5. Contact the Homeowner’s association (HOA)

6. Door-to-Door networking

7. Look through Zillow’s program for unlisted houses

Summary:

While Zillow can be a great tool for those looking to purchase a house, it can also be a tougher tool to use, as many of its listings are not up to date. This may mean that any search that you make on Zillow may ultimately not lead to anything as the house may already be off the market. Still, Zillow remains the largest online platform for housing listings and as such anyone seriously considering buying a house will need to consider the listings that are available on the website.

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