It is a general misconception that Realtors and multiple listing services (MLS) available online provide the most reliable and timely information about the current state of any local real estate market. While it is true that people in the profession have a good understanding of broad sales trends and price movements, they rely on outdated information that is based on past trends in sales of comparable properties in large market areas. However, what is true for the board (macro-level) housing market may not necessarily be true for the small (micro-level) market. And usually it is NOT.
Factors that affect home prices, such as job and income growth, may differ substantially among different neighborhoods in a broader housing market, which would thus reflect in different ways on future demand and values of homes between the broader and the block-level markets.
Therefore, Realtors and the Web-based MSLs, such as RealtorTrack.com and Zillow.com, which rely on trends in broad markets and use as benchmarks prices that may reflect speculative demand and other non-core demand drivers, fail to provide accurate information about the state of housing in any small local area. What’s more, they cannot offer any insight into the future price developments for any particular market or hyper local market or Census Block Group.
However, tools has been developed as an analytical tool that provides reliable information of current changes at a block (neighborhood) level. The Home Value Predictor is also the only available online tool that provides information about future price movements in both broad real estate markets and block-level housing markets. It offers data that is more reliable than the realtor-based price information because it relies on multiple variables, such as job and disposable income, migration, and other primary drivers of demand that determine price growth in any particular block-level market. This is important because real estate is truly a local market for which only the price information that relies on variables that are specific for that particular micro-level market can offer the accurate picture of current and future market trends.