PropertyManagementMaven: January 2008

Zilpy.com Launches a Rental Data Website Built In Partnership with Zillow!!!

HOORAY!  This site is AWESOME and the rental amounts are pretty accurate for most areas according to review by the landlords on the MrLandlord Q&A 

Zilpy.com Launches - Rental Data Website Built In Partnership with Zillow

Posted by Bill Quirk on January 29, 2008

Just came across a press release announcing the launch of Zilpy.com. From the release:

Today, Zilpy.com launched its free online service providing instant access to the most comprehensive and accurate data about the rental market nationwide. "Whether it's Rent Heat Maps for any given city or metro area or down-to-spot rent evaluations Comparative Market Analysis (CMA), the newly launched service crunches a huge amount of rental data every day" said Mrs. Drabkin, VP of Marketing.

Just came across this, and will have to dig into it more to develop what I think, but the partnership with Zillow is interesting and the site definitely has a Zillow look & feel. The press release is below:

Ok...after spending some time on the site I first have to say wow. Great mapping, a nice layout, and a great organization of a lot of data. RentalHomePros.com, a yet to be launched website backed by NARPM has a chief goal of collecting and sifting market data to help with analysis and to become an authority on rental trends. So, it appears Zilpy has already collected a ton of data and has possibly beaten RentalHomePros to the punch.

The real question though, is where is the data coming from? There's no way it can be transactional data of what a lease was actually signed for.....centralized sources with that data just aren't that common. So it must be information in regards to advertised prices which could come from GoogleBase or from scraping a site such as Oodle. If that's the case, then I think there must be a ton of flaws in the data.

For example, Rentometer.com is a site that's had this same goal and was recently quoted in a CNN article in which they used advertised prices on their site to gauge what was happening in the rental market. But almost all of the properties on Rentometer are apartment communities listed with a rent range such as $650.00 to $1150.00. There is no indication of how many $650.00 apartments exist at that community or how many of the more expensive units are there. And in an analysis with that data, I'm sure Rentometer just takes an average which could be seriously flawed since the complex might have 10 units at $650.00 and 150 units at much higher prices. As a result, I thought their methodolgy was flawed, and disagreed with their conclusions in the article.

Similarily, one of the chief complaints from Realtors and real estate agents about Zillow is that the Zestimates can be wildly wrong. And that's probably because the data sources they are using are bringing in incorrect information.

So, if Zilpy is somehow able to provide an accurate picture of what's happening in the rental market then it will be an amazing resource. But, they'll need to reveal their data collection methods at some point for credibility. Otherwise, it could just be garbage-in, garbage-out.

This entry was posted on January 29, 2008 at 4:57 pm and is filed under Zilpy.com. Tagged: Zillow, Zilpy, Zilpy.com.

 

 Wallace S. Gibson, CPM * GIBSON MANAGEMENT GROUP, Ltd.

LandlordWhisperer

View our available Charlottesville, Albemarle and Lake Monticello rental homes online with photos and floor plans


"...to be a Virginian, either by Birth, Marriage, Adoption, or even on one's Mother's side, is an Introduction to any State in the Union, a Passport to any Foreign Country, and a Benediction from the Almighty God...." Anonymous

 

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