Stats in Action: Zillow
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Stats in Action: Zillow


[MUSIC] Zillow is a company of entrepreneurs. We care very deeply about the consumer and were Data Geeks, it’s the core of everything we do. [Stan Humphries]: We are various consumers of the American Community Survey, the Decennial Census. Open Data is part of Zillow’s DNA. [MUSIC] [Amy Bohutinsky]: We started Zillow 10 years ago with a mission of empowering consumers with information and data around what is the most expensive and often most emotional expense of their entire lifetime. So much is tied into that decision and we want to make sure consumers armed with data are starting on their best foot. We started out with every single address in the United States back in 2005 and a mission to attach to that address every single bit of information about it. Step one is finding the absolute best sources of data from trusted resources that we can partner with and then take that data and build it into a products that consumers can use. Government Data products in particular the American Community Survey are really integral to our economical operations here. [Employees Working Together] Our job is to go out and pull all of that information. Information on just about every home in America that comes from a number of sources including the Census Bureau. What’s really important about Census Data products is they’re telling us about the people who live in the homes not just about the homes themselves. Economic data, are you unemployed? Are you married? – Are you single? – Incomes – who you’re living in the dwelling with? How many are millennials? Where are those millennials moving? Why are they moving there? Really important for the housing market and they’re not knowable from the data that Zillow collects in its’ own and that’s where Census data is incredibly important. We then turn around and create intellect products on top of it like home evaluations or housing indices or things that aren’t in that raw data but are things that we create and we then turn around and provide that for free. How much of a mortgage can I afford? How much do I need to save for a down payment? Whether now is a good time to buy or sell. What’s the home’s estimated value and what do we expect to happen with that value? Whether it would be better for you to rent then to by. Where do I want my kids to go to school? How long will the commute be from work? Quite honestly, a decade before the housing bust, Americans didn’t have access to data to help to make some of these decisions and to answer some of these questions. Now with Zillow they do. [MUSIC] We find our research getting used in debates about how we should be doing a better job around housing affordability. Debates that you wouldn’t have had before because you weren’t able to precisely understand how bad is it compared to historical standards and that was only possible from using income data from ACS. I get real delight out of the fact that I get to deploy data and analytics in an area as important to people as housing is. The American Community Survey has been an enormous part of our ability to provide all of this information to consumers. We’re very grateful for this data. It’s been so important to us being able to do what we do and to continue doing what we’re doing decades in the future. [MUSIC]

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