In a little more than a year, Zillow Offers has quickly expanded to 11 markets nationwide, and the number of homes it has listed for sale at any given time is rising rapidly, catching up to other major rival “iBuyers” and even exceeding them in some cases and markets.

It’s been a little more than a year since Zillow began buying homes directly from consumers for all-cash online and re-selling them, through its Zillow Offers service.

But in that time, Zillow Offers has quickly expanded to nearly a dozen markets nationwide, and the number of homes it has listed for sale has risen rapidly, catching up to other major rival “iBuyers” and even exceeding them in some cases and markets.

Zillow Offers was marketing nearly 700 MLS listings earlier this week on Zillow.com, compared to Opendoor’s 2,140 MLS listings, according to an Inman review of Opendoor’s mobile app. Meanwhile, Inman’s monitoring of a separate indicator of Opendoor’s inventory, the listing count on Opendoor’s Zillow.com profile, shows that Opendoor’s inventory is significantly down from January.

Inman wasn’t able to obtain Offerpad’s MLS listing count. But it could compare Offerpad’s combined number of listings that are active and pending or under contract to the same number for Zillow Offers.

Zillow Offers had a roughly combined 1,130 listings that were active or pending or under contract, while Offerpad told Inman it had close to 900, down from a little over 950 in January.

Zillow Offers is live or has announced expansions to a total of 11 markets, whereas Opendoor counts 20 nationwide, and Offerpad counts 14 major metropolitan markets at the time of this article’s publication.

In some of those markets, Zillow Offers, has around as much inventory as Opendoor, the leading iBuyer by listings.

On June 10, Zillow-owned listings that appear on Zillow.com included around 680 “by agent” listings, which are properties listed for sale on the MLS; about 400 “coming soon” listings, which have not yet been listed on the MLS; and around 450 homes that are pending or under contract.

On the same day, Opendoor’s listing count on its Zillow profile was about 2,650. That’s down from roughly 3,600 in early January, and about the same level as two months ago.

When Inman asked Opendoor in early April about the drop, Opendoor spokeswoman Cristin Culver said “that significant drop in active listings is a direct result of an extremely high-volume of resales in the past two months.”

“Like much of the data and headlines at the national and local level have been saying, buyers are stepping off the sidelines and we’re well into the more favorable season for both buying and selling across all of our markets,” she said at the time.

Asked why Opendoor’s listing count on its Zillow profile has remained at roughly the same level over the past two months, a different Opendoor spokeswoman, Sheila Tran, said “Cristin’s response still stands in terms of what we can share.”

Opendoor’s mobile app has also indicated a drop in Opendoor-owned listings over the past six months, displaying a total of about 2,140 on Monday.

The gap between Opendoor’s listing count on its Zillow profile (around 2,650) and on Opendoor’s mobile app (around 2,140) is likely in part because Opendoor’s mobile app doesn’t show listings that are pending or under contract — whereas the listing count on Opendoor’s Zillow profile does include such listings.

Tran didn’t immediately respond when asked if this was the case, but she did note earlier that Opendoor’s Zillow profile doesn’t always perfectly capture Opendoor’s total number of active listings. She also said that Opendoor’s mobile app only displays MLS listings.

Either way, the trend is clear. Even as Opendoor has expanded to new markets, its listing count has plummeted while Zillow Offers’ inventory has grown dramatically.

Zillow’s most recent earnings report provided an earlier snapshot of this growth. Zillow bought nearly 900 homes in the first quarter of 2019, up 80 percent from the previous quarter, according to the report. And it owned nearly 1,000 homes at the end of March. Now, judging by Zillow.com, that number is apparently at least 1,500.

“The growth is significant, and it’s a testament to the appeal and opportunity of the program nationally as we’ve been growing,” said Zillow spokesman Viet Shelton.

In some markets, including a few where Opendoor has been operating for significantly longer than Zillow Offers, Zillow Offers now boasts around the same level of inventory as Opendoor.

In Atlanta, Zillow Offers had 197 “by agent” listings on June 10, compared to the 242 listings on Opendoor’s mobile app.

In Las Vegas, Zillow Offers had 111, compared to Opendoor’s 116.

And in Denver, where Zillow Offers and Opendoor went live at roughly the same time in October 2018, Zillow Offers had slightly more listings than Opendoor: 61, compared to Opendoor’s 59.

Inman couldn’t determine the number of homes that Opendoor owns but hasn’t yet listed on the MLS. Opendoor declined to provide this number. And Opendoor doesn’t market those homes on its mobile app or as “coming soon” listings on Zillow, said Tran, the Opendoor spokeswoman.

Tran would only say that Opendoor is buying and selling (not the same as just buying) about 3,000 homes a month — the same rate at which Opendoor told Inman it was buying and selling homes two months ago.

What is clear, however, is that Zillow has a lot of homes headed for the MLS.

In Atlanta, for example, Zillow is marketing 132 homes as “coming soon” (compared to its 197 “by agent” listings there). And in Dallas, where Zillow announced the launch of Zillow Offers in April, it has 23 “coming soon” listings, compared to only four “by agent” listings.

While Zillow Offers has made up a lot of ground on Opendoor, it still has quite a ways to go.

The number of listings on Opendoor’s mobile app — which reflect those listed as active on the MLS — is a little over three times as many as Zillow Offers’ “by agent” listings — which also reflect those that are active on the MLS.

On the other hand, Zillow Offers appears to have already surpassed Offerpad, once Opendoor’s top rival by market share. On June 11, Offerpad spokeswoman Cortney Read said that Offerpad had close to 900 active and pending listings.

That’s about 300 more than the listing count that appeared on Offerpad’s Zillow profile the day before. Read said there could be several reasons for the discrepancy, including “the timing of when a home is placed on the MLS and timing of when Zillow pulls from the MLS.”

Either way, Zillow Offers had a combined 1,135 listings that were active or pending or under contract. That’s about 200 more than listing count provided to Inman by Offerpad and about 500 more than the listing count that appeared on its Zillow profile.

Email Teke Wiggin

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to clarify the types of listings included in different listing counts for iBuyers covered in this article.

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