Online real estate company Zillow lays off 300 people

Heidi Groover The Seattle Times

SEATTLE — Just before reporting its third-quarter results, Seattle-based Zillow laid off 300 workers.

In a statement Wednesday, the real estate company described the cuts as part of its “normal business process” and did not attribute them to the rapidly cooling housing market that led to layoffs in the real estate industry.

“As part of our normal business process, we continuously assess and manage our resources responsibly as we create digital solutions to make it easier for people to move,” Zillow spokeswoman Chrissy Roebuck said in a statement. .

The company “will shift those resources to key growth areas around our housing super app,” Zillow’s term for its combination of various real estate services, Roebuck said.

Zillow declined to specify how many of the terminated employees were based in Washington state. The affected jobs spanned multiple departments, including home loans and closing services. The company said it had 300 jobs open and was not subject to a hiring freeze. Zillow reported about 5,800 employees in August.

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After peaking in early 2021 at over $200, Zillow’s share price has steadily fallen. In November, the company announced it would close its house flipping division and lay off a quarter of its staff. Since the start of this year, the stock price has fallen from nearly $62 to around $31 on Tuesday. The company is expected to release its third quarter results on Nov. 2.

In an earnings call in August, Zillow CEO Rich Barton acknowledged that “across the industry, we are seeing a significant slowdown in price growth,” but argued that “dreaming and doing shopping on Zillow, Trulia and StreetEasy isn’t stopping because of a poor macroeconomic housing outlook.” .”

Other companies cited the slowing housing market as the reason for the cuts.

As interest rates climb and make it harder to buy a home, housing markets across the country have slowed. In King County, home prices fell 12% from May to September.

Zillow’s Seattle-based competitor Redfin laid off nearly 500 employees in June, and Compass, a New York-based brokerage firm with a significant presence in Seattle, laid off 84 employees in Washington along with others across the country in September.

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