Builder sues Zillow over the site’s home estimates

WGN Investigates
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Data pix.

A Schaumburg home builder has filed a class action lawsuit against the real estate giant Zillow. 

 This is believed to be the first lawsuit of its kind against the website.  If you've ever bought or sold a home, you've likely looked at the site to get an idea of the home’s value. 

Vip Patel, President of Castle Builders, says people are relying on these estimates to decide how much a home is worth and ultimately impacting the real estate industry nationwide.

 Patel adds, “I really thought of it as my issue.  I didn’t realize there are people frustrated all over the country.”

 Eight years ago Patel built a 6-bedroom home on Willow Road in Schaumburg.  It’s been sitting on the market all that time even though he has lowered the price from $2.5 million to $1.9 million.  Zillow has a listed Zestimate of just under $1.2 million.  He says the Zestimate is lower than what it cost to build the home.

 The case is in the courts right now, the attorney is waiting to get approval from a judge to turn it into a class action, that means anyone in Illinois would be able to join the lawsuit.  

Zillow has been reaching  out to the public to see if someone can come up with a better algorithm, offering a $1 million prize.  



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