Privacy Policy

Effective Date: January 1, 2020

When you use Zillow Group services to find, buy, rent, or sell your home, get a mortgage, or connect to a real estate pro, we know you’re trusting us with your data. We also know we have a responsibility to respect your privacy, and we work hard to do just that.  This policy explains what information we collect, why we use it, who we share it with, and how we protect it, along with the tools you can use to manage your privacy.

Introduction

We offer a wide range of services that focus on all stages of the home lifecycle: renting, buying, selling, financing, and home improvement.

We know that everyone’s home journey is different, and that deciding on the right place to call home is an intimate, personal experience.  Along with a wealth of information about homes, neighborhoods, market conditions, local real estate professionals, and financing options, we also use the information you give us to provide our services and help you find your next home.

We carefully evaluate how we use data to make sure that we’re using your information to provide value for you.  On this page, we aim to explain everything you need to know about your privacy at Zillow.   If you have any questions that we haven’t answered here, you can always contact us at privacy@zillow.com.

Information collected by Zillow

When you use our services, we collect a variety of information from and about you and your devices.  Some of this information identifies you directly (like an email address) while some of it is associated with you through your account, profile, or device (like the homes you choose to save or your location data).

The kind of data we collect about you depends on how you use Zillow.  If you only use our services to browse for homes, we’ll have less information about you than if we help you sell your homeget a mortgagesign your lease, or if you use any of our other transaction services.  Even if you don’t have an account with us, we may still collect some data about you, like your email address and phone number if you choose to contact a real estate agent through our platform, or your IP address and other device information when you browse our sites or use our apps.

Information you give us or create using our services

When you use our services, we often ask you for information about yourself.  This usually includes basic things like your name, email address, and phone number.  If you use our transaction services, we might ask you for more sensitive data like your income, housing history, and credit score.  If you contribute information, such as agent reviews, we’ll store that as well.

You may also provide information about other people through our services. For example, if you share a home listing with someone, we will collect that person’s email address as part of your account information.

Below are some examples of what information we collect for our main products and services and how we collect it.

Zillow Offers

Zillow Offers extends cash offers on residential real estate in select U.S. cities.  If you ask for an offer on your home, we will ask you for information about you and your home. This includes contact information (such as an email address or phone number), identifying information about you, and details about your home.  We may also take some photos of your home so we know what types of repairs may be necessary.  If we agree to buy your home, we’ll need to collect more information from you that is typical of any real estate transaction, including financial information.

We collect similar contact and transaction-related information from you if you are interested in purchasing a Zillow-owned home.  If you choose to tour a Zillow-owned home, we collect information to verify your identity.  Zillow may collect information about you from third parties if needed to verify your identity.

Home Search

When you use Zillow’s home search brands (including Zillow, Trulia, HotPads, StreetEasy, NakedApartments, and OutEast) to find a home to buy or rent, we give you lots of tools to find your next home.  If you tell us what you’re looking for, such as the type of home or number of bedrooms, we save that information so that we can tailor your search results to what you’re looking for.

We also help you connect with local real estate agents, homebuilders, property managers, mortgage loan officers, and other real estate professionals.  If you choose to contact one of these pros through our platform, we ask for your name, email address, and phone number so that we can reach you and connect you with the right person.

You can also claim your home on Zillow and edit home facts such as the square footage, number of bathrooms, and most recent renovation year.  We link the information you provide to your account.

Rental Tools

You can use Zillow to apply for rental housing, sign your lease, and even pay your rent.  When you choose to use these features, we collect information from you to process your transaction.

During the rental application process, we collect your information like your email address and phone number, employment history, rental history, income, and credit score.  You can use our tools to pull your credit report and criminal background check to include in your application, but Zillow doesn’t store your Social Security number and we don’t collect or see the credit or background check reports. We partner with Experian and Checkr to generate those reports and make them available only to you and the landlords you choose to send them to.

When you pay your rent through Zillow, we collect your transaction information, but we don’t store your payment account details.  Instead, we use trusted partners to collect and store that data.  If you use your bank account to pay your rent, our service provider Plaid collects personal and financial information from your bank or other financial institution. By using Zillow to make your rent payments, you are granting Zillow and Plaid the right, power, and authority to act on your behalf to access and transmit your personal and financial information from the relevant financial institution. Your information will be transferred, stored, and processed by Plaid in accordance with the Plaid Privacy Policy.

If you sign your lease documents through Zillow, we will collect and store your contact information, signature, and any other information contained in the lease documents, which can vary by state and city.

Zillow Home Loans

This privacy policy does not apply to Zillow Home Loans.  To understand what kind of information Zillow Home Loans collects, please read the Zillow Home Loans Privacy Policy.

Services and Products for Professionals

If you are a real estate professional, you may be able to connect your third-party email account (such as Gmail) to your Zillow account.  If you enable that connection, Zillow will access your messages, contacts, and settings only to provide the requested services to you.  We do not access or collect any of the contents of your email messages in providing interest-based advertising.  We use information received from Gmail APIs only in compliance with Google’s Limited Use Requirements.

We also collect your contact and payment details, along with professional information such as brokerage affiliation, associated listings and sales, and licensing history.

Information from Public Sources and Third Parties

Zillow collects information from public sources, such as county and state tax and property records, government agencies, and multiple listing services (or MLS).  Most of this information is about properties, not people.  But some information we collect, like the identity of a property’s owner or real estate license information, may relate to individuals.

We also collect information about you from various third parties in order to provide better service to you, or as part of the employment application process.  This may include demographic information and other attributes about you.

Information we collect as you use our services

Along with the information you give us directly, we collect a variety of information automatically as you use Zillow services.

Activity information

We collect information about how you use Zillow.  This includes things like your home search history, homes you view, purchase activity, what you’ve clicked on and other uses of our features, and the amount of time you spend looking at different parts of our websites.  When you call or text Zillow or a real estate professional using our platform, we collect data about your call or text, including the date and time of the call or text, your phone number, and the content of the call or text.

Device information

Like other websites and apps, we collect data about the browsers and devices you use to access Zillow.  The data we collect includes browser or device model and settings, operating system, unique identifiers, and the version of the app you’re using. We also collect data about how your browsers and devices interact with our services, including IP address, crash reports, system activity, and the date, time, and the URL of the site you visited before Zillow.

You can control our collection of certain data, such as your mobile device model or the language your mobile device uses, by adjusting the privacy and security settings on your mobile device.

Location Information

If you enable location services on your mobile device, Zillow collects the location of your device.  We use that information to provide you with location-based information and ads, like homes and real estate professionals in your area, and to offer location-based services, like allowing you to unlock and tour Zillow Offers homes on your own schedule and claiming your home on Zillow.  If you don’t want to use these features, you can turn off location services on your device.

We also collect location information for similar purposes from your browser if you enable it.  You can disable access through your browser settings.

Cookies, pixel tags, and other tracking technologies

We and our partners use various tools to collect data when you visit our sites and apps, including cookies, pixel tags, and other similar technologies. Cookies are bits of electronic data that can be transferred to your computer or other device to identify your browser.

When you use Zillow, we and our partners may use cookies and other tools to gather information about how you view and use our services and content, and to connect your activity with other data we store about you. The use of cookies helps us serve you better by understanding what you’re interested in, tracking trends, measuring the effectiveness of ads, saving your preferences, and storing information you may want to retrieve on a regular basis, such as your favorite homes. We also allow specific, approved partners to collect data from your browser or device for advertising and measurement purposes using their own cookies or similar tools.

At any time, you can use our cookie preference tools to manage what kinds of cookies and other tracking technologies you’re comfortable with.  Check out our for information about how to access these tools.  You can also disable cookies altogether by adjusting the settings on your browser. However, if you choose to disable some or all cookies, many parts of our services may no longer work.  

In addition, if you give your email address to us, we may use a scrambled, unreadable form (called a “hashed” version) of your email address to deliver tailored ads to you on Zillow or on other websites, including via Facebook’s Custom Audience Feature or other similar tools. Click here to learn about how you can control the ads you see on Facebook.

For information about how you can manage your cookie preferences, check out the section of this policy called “Your privacy tools and choices.”

Social networks

If you use social media logins (like Google and Facebook) to log in to Zillow, we may access your public social media profile information.  You can always limit this sharing using your social media service settings.

Inferences

To improve our services and make them more useful to you, we use data about your activity to understand and infer your preferences.  For example, if you usually search for homes for rent rather than homes to buy, we may assume that you are not looking to buy a home and show you more information helpful for renters.

Commercial Information

We collect information about the products and services you purchase or consider purchasing from us.  This includes products for professionals, such as our advertising products, as well as consumer services like Zillow Offers.

Audiovisual information

If you visit a home owned by Zillow, we may capture your likeness and voice using cameras and audio recording equipment for safety reasons.

Why Zillow uses your information

Completing your transactions

When you use Zillow to complete real estate transactions, like buying or selling your home, applying to rental housing, or signing a lease, we use your personal information to verify your identity and process and complete your transaction.

Providing and improving our services

We use your information to provide our services to you. This includes things like returning home search results and processing your rental application.  We also use your information to improve our existing services and develop new ones.  For example, we track how you use our websites and apps and use that information to troubleshoot issues and adjust things to improve your experience.

Communicating with you and connecting you with others

We use the contact information you provide us, like your phone number and email address, to communicate with you about our services.  This includes things like responding to comments, questions, and requests you send us. It also includes notifying you of transaction or service updates and changes.  We may also inform you about our services, offers, promotions, news, and other updates we think may be of interest to you.

If you ask us to, we also use your information to connect you to real estate professionals, like when you want to contact an agent to discuss a home you find for sale on our platform.

Personalizing your experience

We use the information we collect about you and your activity on our services to personalize the services we offer.  We also use it to show advertising, content, or features that we think you might like.  This includes things like customized search results that match your preferences and prior search criteria and, if you ask us to, connecting you to a real estate professional best suited to help you.

If we know you’re working with a particular real estate agent, we may share information about your saved homes and searches with that agent to let them serve you more effectively.  You control what we share with real estate pros you find on our platform.

Other uses of your information

We also use your data to detect, investigate, and prevent fraudulent transactions and other illegal activities and to protect the rights and property of Zillow, its customers, and others.

Occasionally, there may be a reason we’d like to use your information in a way that isn’t described here.  If that happens, we’ll let you know so you can decide if you’re comfortable with it.

Sharing your information

We understand that sharing information with third parties is a big responsibility.  We’re committed to sharing information only when needed for a legitimate business or legal purpose, and then only with recipients who will protect it.

Information you ask us to share

We share information when you ask us to share it. For example, if you choose to contact a real estate agent, mortgage lender, investor, builder, property manager, or other real estate pro through our platform, we will send them your name and contact information. Similarly, if you apply for rental housing through Zillow, your application information will be sent to the landlords you select.

Service providers and business partners

When Zillow hires a service provider to help operate our business, we may need to give them access to information to provide their service.  We allow them to use the information only to perform the service we’ve asked them to perform.  We vet all service providers carefully, and Zillow always remains responsible for the privacy of your information that is shared with our service providers.

When Zillow partners with other businesses to offer products and services to you, we may share information with those partners only as needed to provide those products and services and only subject to the terms of this privacy policy.

Legal and compliance transfers

When Zillow needs to share data to satisfy a legal or regulatory requirement, including responding to a subpoena or other lawful government request for data, we will share information only as necessary to comply with that requirement.  We’ll tell you before sharing your information in these situations unless we’re prohibited from doing so.  For more information about how we respond to requests for data, see Government and Civil Information Requests.  We may also share information if needed to enforce our legal rights, detect or prevent fraud or security concerns, and protect public safety.

If Zillow is involved in a merger, acquisition, or any form of transfer or sale of some or all of its business, whether as a going concern or as part of bankruptcy, liquidation, or similar proceeding, we may share your information in connection with that transaction.

Public and deidentified data

We may share information that is collected from public sources or that you choose to share publicly (such as public reviews and home facts) with third parties.  We may also share aggregated and/or deidentified information that cannot reasonably be used to identify you.

Sales of personal information

Zillow allows certain companies to place tracking technologies like cookies and pixels on our sites, which allow those companies to receive information about your activity on Zillow that is associated with your browser or device.  The companies may use that data to serve you more relevant ads on our sites or others.  Under some state laws, sharing data for online advertising like this may be considered a “sale” of information.  Except for this kind of sharing, Zillow doesn’t sell any of your information.

You always have full control over whether these technologies work on your devices.  You can disable them entirely using our cookie consent preference tools (see the Zillow Privacy Center for instructions), or by clicking the “Do Not Sell My Information” link on our websites.

Privacy tools and choices

Accessing and deleting your information

We’ve made a variety of privacy tools available on Zillow.  Using the Zillow Privacy Center, you can see what kind of data we’ve collected about you and the types of third parties we share it with.  You can also download a copy of the data and take it with you to a service outside of Zillow if you want. If you’d like to delete your data or close your account, you can do that using the Zillow Privacy Center as well.

We provide these tools for your benefit and we will never discriminate against you for using them. But if you choose to delete your data or close your account, we won’t be able to offer you services that require us to use your data.

Managing cookie preferences

The Zillow Privacy Center has information about how to use tools on our websites and apps to manage what kinds of cookies are allowed to load when you use Zillow.

Zillow’s third-party ad servers, ad network providers, and third-party advertisers provide ad content that appears on Zillow. To measure how effective those ads are and to make them more relevant, ad providers may use their own tracking technologies to collect your information. These are used to record users’ activity, such as the pages visited, and to learn what types of information are of most interest to the users. For more information regarding the choices you have about these technologies (such as opting out), visit the Network Advertising InitiativeDigital Advertising AllianceOmniture, and PrivacyChoice.

Managing communications preferences

Email subscriptions

Zillow may send you email for a variety of reasons.  For example, if you save a search, we’ll send you emails with new homes on the market that match your search.  If you save a home, we’ll keep you posted on status updates like when that home has an open house scheduled and when it has an offer pending.  When you use our transaction services, we’ll send you status updates and other information about your transaction.  If you have an account with Zillow, you can select your preferences through your account settings. Also, you can manage the types of email you receive by following the instructions included in each email we send you. Even if you unsubscribe from some email subscriptions, we may still need to email you with important transactional or other non-advertising information.

Calls and texts

Some of our services allow you to provide your phone number to us.  If you give us your number, we may call or text you, for example, to give you information about getting an offer on your home through Zillow Offers. We will contact you through these methods only in accordance with applicable legal requirements, and you always have the ability to opt out of further calls or texts.

Protecting your information

We understand that no matter how we collect your information, we have a responsibility to protect it.  We take that responsibility seriously.  We build security into our products and features from the ground up to help protect data from unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration, and destruction.

We’re always looking for threats and take reasonable steps to respond to those threats, protecting the information users share with us.  Of course, no method of Internet transmission or data storage can provide guaranteed protection to your information.  If anything should ever happen to your information, we’ll let you know as soon as we can and try our best to make it right.

Zillow is based in the United States and the information we collect is governed primarily by U.S. law.  Where we are subject to the privacy laws of other countries, we comply with those requirements.  If you access or use our services or provide information to us, your information will be processed and stored in the United States, where you may not have the same rights and protections as you do under your local law.

Applicability of this policy

This policy applies to every service of ours that links to it.  It does not apply to Zillow Home Loans, which has a separate privacy policy available here.

Our apps and services may link to other companies’ websites. Some features may also involve the sharing of your information with third-party websites. These third-party websites may collect information about users on those websites.  Zillow doesn’t control those sites, and this privacy policy does not apply to these external websites and third parties.

In this section, we’ve provided some legally required disclosures under state privacy laws.  There shouldn’t be anything surprising in this section, and we’ve tried to explain our privacy practices in plain English throughout the rest of the policy.

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act or CCPA, California residents have certain rights regarding their data, including:

  • The right to know the categories of personal information we’ve collected and the categories of sources from which we got the information (see Information collected by Zillow and the chart just below)
  • The right to know the business purposes for sharing personal information (see Why Zillow uses your information)
  • The right to know the categories of third parties with whom we’ve shared personal information (see Sharing your information)
  • The right to access the specific pieces of personal information we’ve collected and the right to delete your information (see Privacy tools and choices)

California residents also have the right to not be discriminated against if they choose to exercise their privacy rights.

Categories of Personal Information under the California Consumer Privacy Act

Category and sources of InformationHow we use itTypes of individuals affectedHow we share it
Identifiers We collect this information from our users, customers, and business partners.  We also generate identifiers internally.To enable use of our sites, services, and products, to communicate with you, to understand how our users interact with our sites, and to improve our offeringsPeople who use our sites or mobile applications; create a user account; receive a Zillow Offer; send us an inquiry about buying a home, product, or service from us; ask to be connected to a real estate pro; purchase advertising from us;obtain a service from us; and real estate pros who we connect with usersWe share this data with our service providers and with business partners, including those to whom you instruct us to send this information
Personal information under California Civil Code section 1798.80 We collect this information from our users, customers, and business partnersTo enable use of our sites, services, and products, to communicate with you, to understand how our users interact with our sites, and to improve our offeringsPeople who create a user account; receive a Zillow Offer; send us an inquiry about buying a home, product, or service from us; ask to be connected to a real estate pro; purchase advertising from us; obtain a service from us; and real estate pros who we connect with usersWe share this data with our service providers and with business partners, including those to whom you instruct us to send this information
Protected classifications We collect this information from our users and business partnersTo understand how our users interact with our sites, and to conduct research into housing and real estate trends and marketsPeople who buy or sell a home from/to us; use our rental application submission service; enter into a business partnership with us;We don’t share
Commercial information We collect this information from our customers, and generate it internally during transactions with our customersTo transact with you if you use our services or products, and to enable transactions you’ve requestedPeople who sell us a home; buy a home, product or service from us; purchase advertising from usWe share this data with our service providers and with business partners, including those to whom you instruct us to send this information
Biometric informationWe don’t collect this dataNoneNone
Electronic network activity information We collect this information from our users and customersTo enable use of our sites, services, and products, to communicate with you, to understand how our users interact with our sites, and to improve our offeringsPeople who use our sites or mobile applicationsWe share this data with our service providers and with business partners, including those to whom you instruct us to send this information
Geolocation data We collect this information from our users and customersTo enable use of our sites, services, and products, to understand how our users interact with our sites, and to improve our offeringsPeople who use our sites or mobile applications and allow us to collect their location dataWe share this data with our service providers
Audio, electronic, visual, thermal, olfactory, or similar information We collect this information from our users and customersTo identify you, to enable use of our sites, services, and products, and for safety purposesPeople who call us; visit or tour a Zillow-owned homeWe share this data with our service providers
Professional or employment-related information We collect this information from our customers and business partnersTo provide services or products you’ve requestedPeople who use our rental application services; contact us in a business-to-business context; obtain a mortgage loan from us; buy a home from us We share this data with our service providers and with business partners, including those to whom you instruct us to send this information
Education information We collect this information from our customersTo provide services or products you’ve requestedPeople who use our rental application services; obtain a mortgage loan from us; buy a home from usWe share this data with our service providers and with business partners, including those to whom you instruct us to send this information
Inferences We generate these internallyTo understand how our users interact with our sites, to develop and offer more relevant and useful services and products, and to improve the products and services we offerPeople who use our sites or mobile applications, including users who: receive a Zillow Offer; ask to be connected with real estate pros; or apply for a mortgage through usWe don’t share

While California law applies only to California residents, we believe everyone should have the same privacy rights regardless of where you live.  So our privacy tools are available to all of our users.  You can access these tools through the Zillow Privacy Center.

Contacting Zillow Group

If you have any questions about this privacy policy, or the privacy practices of Zillow, please check out the Privacy Support Center  for FAQs and other information.

You can also email us at privacy@zillow.com, or you can write to us at:

Zillow, Inc.
Attn: Consumer Care
1301 Second Avenue, Floor 31
Seattle, WA 98101

Changes to this policy

We are always reviewing our privacy practices to make sure they comply with this policy.  Sometimes, we’ll need to update the policy to reflect changes in our products, technology, and uses of data. We won’t change the policy in a way that reduces your rights or significantly changes the way we use or share data without telling you ahead of time and giving you a chance to stop using our services if you want.

See our previous Privacy Policy:

Effective June 25, 2019