What is going on with Zillow? What exactly is their business plan for 2019?

As you may already know, Zillow Group Inc. which runs the largest U.S. home-search website,  announced that their CEO will be steeping down, and the founder will be taking over. Could it be because their until recently dropped dropped 46 percent from June, 2018?

Bloomberg has this article on Spence stepping down at Zillow yesterday:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-02-21/zillow-ceo-rascoff-steps-down-so-barton-can-lead-moonshot-effort

Zillow wants the entire pie

Zillow must believe that advertising real estate agents ads and flipping homes is their future:

They’re finding out that flipping isn’t as easy as it looks though.  In addition, realtors aren’t spending like they used to on Zillow ads

In August 2018, the company said that it was taking longer than anticipated to sell the homes it acquires. Three months later, it reported that some advertising customers were pulling their business because they disliked changes to the platform. Shares in the company, which peaked at $65.21 in June, plummeted to a low of $27 in November 2018.

Agents may have told Zillow that they were pulling their business because of changes in the platform, but that won’t be the end of it.  As the number of home sales decline nationally, realtors will slow or stop spending money – starting with the very expensive Zillow ads.

Conclusion

Zillow still says they love realtors, but we’ll see about that. Once their advertising income declines, will they still love downtown Boston real estate agents? I looked into Zillow ads for just one zip code within Beacon Hill, the price was $2,800 per month. Really? I think I’ll pass on that one Zillow.

The next few years are going to be exciting. Will Zillow still be calling me in 2019? Will they expand their real estate buying and flipping program into the Boston area? It may work when business is booming, what happens when it slows down? Zillow may be stuck with a lot of Boston condos for sale.

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