Use Zillow to Prepare for Surveillance


Zillow is a real-estate marketplace application developed by one of the world’s biggest online real-estate database companies, the Zillow Group. According to Fortune magazine, Zillow successfully approximates the value of 57 percent of U.S. housing.

Zillow, available via the Internet and as an app, can calculate the value of any property based on publicly available data, real estate transactions, census data, calculations, and information on neighboring houses. These features make Zillow an excellent tool for private investigators to plan surveillance projects.

Zillow Product Features

Regarding real estate management, Zillow is an all-around app that gives you access to thousands of houses for sale and rent. It makes your home-buying process effortless and also lets you explore different neighborhoods. The website and the app can browse various homes, apartments, townhomes, and condos for sale, look up and evaluate real estate agents, learn about nearby schools, save and store results, and sign up for alerts.

Zillow for Real Estate and Property Research

Zillow is a straightforward and intuitive application that redefines neighborhood exploration and enhances the experience of buying or selling real estate. In addition, the product is an excellent resource for private investigators who need to conduct research on houses before performing surveillance, especially when used in conjunction with Google Maps.

Home Search Options

The app offers several search methods, but private detectives will likely use the simple search option. Enter a location or address in the search box, click the search icon or press enter. The resulting page will display an aerial neighborhood map with a highlighted target house.

In addition, specific details will be provided, such as a photo of the front of the house, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, total square footage, and helpful facts about the lot and its unique features. This information may come in handy as you scout potential hiding locations and sightlines.

In addition to searching by address, the app allows users to search property information using a voice search. Also, users can draw a custom region on the map or use the nearby feature to find all the properties listed in that area. This may be useful if you need to know about other properties in the area. On some occasions, private eyes need a long-term location for conducting surveillance. That empty house across the street from your subject may be the perfect place.

Zillow determines an estimate of the property cost and provides rental information through a ‘Zestimate.’ The Zestimate is their proprietary approximation of the cost to buy or rent the property. Users can look for a property through any search method and know it’s ‘Zestimate’ to plan their next move. It also gives detailed information about the users’ region of interest. It allows users to post homes for sale, too.

Apart from looking up the property, Zillow also lets you apply for loan pre-approval and gives you a certificate of qualification from high-rated lenders.

How to Download and Install the Zillow App

The Zillow mobile application is available on iOS (Apple) for iPhone, iPod, and iPad; Android, Blackberry, and Windows applications. The specific version number varies by platform and device. It can be downloaded and installed for free.

If you have any questions, please visit or leave a comment below. Learn about other Private Investigator Apps and software for Private Eyes.

Michael Kissiah is the owner of Brandy Lane Publishing, LLC, which owns and operates a small portfolio of websites, including Michael created more than 20 years ago after working as a private investigator in the state of Florida. Since that time, he has become an expert at how to find information online and has written over 1000 articles on topics related to the investigation industry. In addition, he is the author of the "Private Investigator Licensing Handbook", available at


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