Hey, Internet, why are you such a tease?
10/31/2014 | Author: Marty Kramer
I admit it … I got sucked in.
I was poking around on Zillow when a photo of a beautiful bathroom caught my attention. A little tag at the top said, “Estimate: $15,500.”
Wow! I was instantly transported to daydream mode, imagining this stunning bathroom in my home.
Then, like a needle scratching across a record, a user comment below the photo jerked me back to reality. “Lots o’ luck,” said this person, identifying him or herself as a remodeling professional. The remodeler projected that the cost was off by at least 100%. Another commenter pegged the price at about $60,000.
I should’ve known better. Zillow is an interesting website. But I know their “zestimates” for home values are all over the place, often wrong by 20% or more. I’ve seen them designate the University of Texas as a nearby neighborhood to Lakeway. (Hey, it’s only about a seven-hour walk!)
Still, for a second there, I thought I could update my 1960s-era bathroom into a modern dream bathroom for a quarter of the real cost.
In the future, if I want to know what a bathroom remodel will set me back, I’ll ask a contractor. Just like when I’m ready to sell my home and want to know what it’s worth—or I’m looking to buy and need to know if one neighborhood is near another—I’ll contact an expert who really knows what's going on ... I'll talk to a Texas REALTOR®.
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