Zillow.com launched its beta web site a few days ago, offering free access to real estate information that has been hard to come by until now. (It’s been added to the bruceb favorites page under Home-Family / Realty).

Zillow displays estimates of the market value of homes all over the country, based on data such as tax records, sales history, and comparables. The main display shows aerial photos overlaid with lot lines, and gives access to charts and graphs of historical data, plus details on the size and room totals of each house.

The Multiple Listing Service used by agents is still closed, so Zillow doesn’t have the most up to date information about pending sales and listings. Data in some parts of the country is still spotty. Nonetheless, this is still a remarkably rich source of information that wasn’t readily available.

Here’s an article from Walter Mossberg’s influential column in the Wall Street Journal about the new service.

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