Dollar Point May 2020 Update

Dollar Point is seeing the effects of coronavirus – in two opposite ways.

 

An escrow on Mammoth with a list price $935,000 fell apart due to coronavirus fear.

 

An off-market, record-setting price per foot sale successfully closed for $4,375,000 due to coronavirus fear. How is this possible?

 

My clients at 324 Edgecliff and I were fortunate to sell their incredible lakeview home for $4,375,000 on 3/24/20. Our escrow started in early January then continued through the outbreak of the coronavirus. The buyers, their agent, the sellers and I worked together (with some understandable hiccups along the way) to see this through to a successful close of escrow. This was the most challenging transaction I’ve ever been a part of and the difficulty wasn’t entirely due to the coronavirus and subsequent worst week on Wall Street in 90 years. Let’s just say that cool heads prevailed and now we have a very happy buyer-family, very happy sellers, and two happy agents. Good stuff.

 

So how did it sell amidst all that’s happening in the world and SF?

 

Tahoe is a getaway. It is a respite from busy life in more urban areas. When CA has natural disasters we see an overall drop in interest but a spike in the seriousness of already-attentive buyers. With the way coronavirus is playing out, I see this happening again and especially among the top 5% of our feeder markets. We can already see this from the seller side via my analysis of how sellers are reacting after their escrows fall apart due to coronavirus fears – the wealthier have more confidence in the market. See more detail on this page which I researched and wrote specifically to educate our buyers and sellers on what is happening in Tahoe-Truckee real estate since the statewide school closures on 3/13 and Governor Newsom’s Shelter in Place order on 3/19.

 

While showings are somewhat challenging, real estate has been ruled an essential service so showings are permitted – we just need to be smart in how we handle them. Again, please see this page for LOTS more info on the market since 3/13.

 

Important Notes on the Edgecliff Sale: I was able to sell this home off-market per sellers’ request. This was handled in an efficient manner with no interruption of their rental nor personal schedules. The selling price is $1072/foot which the highest price per foot ever recorded for a Dollar Point non-lakefront home. Note: I helped a different client achieve the record for highest Dollar Point MLS sale: $8,199,000 in 2015.

 

Dollar Point has just 5 active listings on the market currently. Before the statewide school closures on 3/13 there were 8:

 

1 closed (324 Edgecliff, sold off-market).

 

1 fell apart (162 Mammoth, listed at $935k) then exited the market.

 

1 exited the market (185 Observation; note this is a realtors’ home and they removed it from the market). See all Dollar Point listings here.

 

Dollar Point had a huge year in 2018 – sales volume was 2.5 times greater than 2017.

 

2019 was a disappointment with the lowest volume seen in years. Days on market in the neighborhood is typically 1/3 of that for the surrounding area.

 

This is an incredibly highly-desired neighborhood. You and I both know why. I’ve lived in Dollar Point and absolutely love it. So do today’s buyers…
 

Quick Stats:

  • 5 active MLS listings from $1.05m – 4.75$m, average $2.3m.
  • 2 sales this year vs. 0 to this point last year. 
  • 0 active escrows
  • 2019 Sold Volume was 1/3 that of 2018

 

For my Feb ’20 pre-coronavirus update on Dollar Point click here

 

Get in Touch with Alex

July Update

We are seeing multiple offers on most properties and even at the highest levels. We are seeing noncontingent offers and competitive bidding on homes that are handled properly.

 

What does this mean?

 

It’s easy to get a high valuation of your property. But handling the process needs to be done carefully, thoughtfully and experience matters. Call me to discuss your value and how I help buyers and sellers navigate the wild ride that is Tahoe-Truckee real estate in Summer 2020.

 

 

Buyers from our primary feeder markets are deciding to purchase in order to Shelter in Place in Tahoe-Truckee. Some of them are buying as second homes and others are buying to actually move here. I have a theory that many of the latter group will turn around and sell more quickly than most buyers because once things normalize somewhat in a couple years, some of these 2020 buyers will decide full-time mountain life is not for them.

 

 

Here are sales from Jan 2019 through May 2020:

(Note that you need to add $18m to the May sales due to an off-market lakefront sale)

 

Last year was a typical year. From Feb to March sales decreased. Note that in 2020 during the same time, sales actually increased. This is incredible because March 2020 was essentially half a month because coronavirus shock, school closures and Shelter In Place all happened then. This means our market was picking up huge steam then was decimated by coronavirus.

 

What’s happening now?

 

Year over year, May volume is down just 11%. This is a 6% improvement in the last 30 days however the actual improvement is much larger and will be seen in June with heavy closing volume. Note: straight MLS data shows a 32% drop in volume year over year but I use off-market sales data to give you a more accurate picture of the market – Welcome to TheBigBlueLake!

 

MLS-wide since March 13 when things got serious in CA, sales volume is exactly equal but the number of sales is down 29%.

 

April was down in volume by roughly 40%. This will likely be our hardest-hit month of 2020 since its sales reflects new buyer activity in March.

 

How am I Pricing Homes Right Now?

 

We are currently in a high-price bubble which started in mid-May and has made itself apparent over the last week (end of May-early June). I am increasing pricing recommendations for sellers. This will likely be short-lived because inventory will improve and the most voracious buyers will have cleared through the market by purchasing. The only exception is raw land as it still has the most reasons for uncertainty mainly due to supply chains. So my Spring-Summer 2020 sellers are excited because they are still being able to accomplish their goals – I must admit that I am very excited about this, too. Feel free to reach out about your property.

 

A little background: I have remained bullish on this market since closing a big sale in March and seeing that buyer’s reaction to coronavirus. I had a theory then and it’s proving true: the wealthy will want to come to Tahoe even more now than before. There are a multitude of reasons for this which I’ve described in previous posts (click here). I love talking about this stuff, so feel free to reach out: 530.214.6100.

 

Check this out:

 

Sales volume of properties over $2m: since mid-March volume is up 283% over last year – wow! The number of closed sales since mid-March is more than double what it was same time last year. When you think of what’s going on in the world, this is pretty staggering information.

 

Great for sellers: there are tons of buyers out there.

 

Great for buyers: there are awesome property options and money is almost free with interest rates under 3%.

Get in Touch with Alex

Lakefront Late June 2020 Update

Update Late-June 2020:

 

Earlier this spring a $19.5m Sunnyside property was promoted off-market and sold almost immediately for $18m.  Sale not yet recorded in MLS.

 

A Rubicon property priced at $9m with beautiful beach and pier entered escrow in 10 days – the lakefront average is 141 days. Note one of the other 2 lakefront sales this year had just 26 days on market.

 

A sweet spot on Flick Point for $8m is in escrow – was initially offered for $11m. A Dollar Point lakefront which nearly rotted on the vine last year is now in escrow, list price $4.5m.

 

In a nutshell, last month we had a ton of buyers standing at the gates waiting to be let into the marketplace. Some crashed the gate but now with our Counties in Phase III for conoravirus, the market is very, very busy with buyer activity at all levels.

 

The problem right now is a dearth of lakefront properties available for sale. So these buyers who understand that it’s easier to buy than rent are speeding up the timeline they may have previously set for a potential Tahoe purchase. Time is extremely valuable to these people and so they are buying Tahoe lakefronts now. I see this strong demand continuing for months.

 

Quick Stats

  • 7 active lakefront listings from $2.4m to $6.25m.
  • Half of these were offered last summer – ouch.
  • 7 lakefronts in escrow now, $2m – $9m, average list price $4.9m.
  • Usually 6-10 lakefronts enter escrow between Mid-May and Mid-June – this is happening now.
  • 2019 sales were down 50% from 2018. 2018 volume was nearly double 2017. See chart below.

 

All three lakefront homes which sold this year were not offered last year. This means half the current inventory is stale and has been picked over. We need more lakefronts to sell!

I send videos to buyers who can’t make it up. Here is a sample: The Lakeside Drive house for $3.5m has a great feel but no garage – casual video walk through link. It is now in escrow.

 

Here are the properties I have listed and am marketing right now. You’ll see that I use high-end video and imagery for each. It all starts with the presentation.

 

20 Crystal Drive, $24,850,000

Main Website: 20CrystalDriveTahoe.com

20 Crystal Flipbook

 

24 Crystal Drive, Coming soon. Price $22,950,000

Main Website: 24CrystalDriveTahoe.com

 

2222 Silver Fox. $5,950,000

Main Website: NorthstarCastle.com

Largest home to ever be sold at Northstar.

 

580 Granlibakken Road. $2,950,000

Main Website: Click here

5451′ Ahwahnee-esque log lodge on 3 acres right near downtown Tahoe City.

Get in Touch with Alex

May 2020 Market Update

Our market is down just 17% from last year and it is picking up steam in a big way. Sales of luxury homes are up 230% over last year (detail below). As for the market in general, the June numbers will reflect a major increase in sales and interest in Tahoe-Truckee properties.

 

We are seeing multiple offers on many properties, a $9m lakefront entered escrow in 10 days, an $18m lakefront sold off-market (still not reported in MLS).

 

Inquiries for our listings are skyrocketing. One of my sellers dropped price to $3m and we’ve had 4 showings in 10 days as compared to 3 showings in 3 months last year (click here to see a great video of this awesome Tahoe City log lodge on 3 acres).

 

Buyers from our primary feeder markets are deciding to purchase in order to Shelter in Place in Tahoe-Truckee. Some of them are buying as second homes and others are buying to actually move here. I have a theory that many of the latter group will turn around and sell more quickly than most buyers because once things normalize somewhat in a couple years, some of these 2020 buyers will decide full-time mountain life is not for them.

 

Here are sales from Jan 2019 through April 2020:

 

Last year was a typical year. From Feb to March sales decreased. Note that in 2020 sales actually increased. This is incredible because March 2020 was essentially half a month since coronavirus shock, school closures and Shelter In Place all happened then. This means our market was picking up huge steam then was decimated by coronavirus.

 

What’s happening now?

 

Year over year, April was down in volume by roughly 40%. This will likely be our hardest-hit month of 2020 since its sales reflects new buyer activity in March.

 

May year over year: MLS data shows our market down 57% BUT you come to thebigbluelake.com to get a more accurate picture of the market! Factoring in the $18m off-market sale May year over year is down just 30%.

 

How am I Pricing Homes Right Now?

 

I am recommending strong pricing for all sellers. For those sellers who inquired any time in 2019, I am continuing to recommend similar or higher pricing in 2020. The only exception is raw land as it has the most reasons for uncertainty. So my Spring-Summer 2020 sellers are excited because they are still being able to accomplish their goals – I must admit that I am very excited about this, too.

 

I have remained bullish on this market since closing a big sale in March and seeing that buyer’s reaction to coronavirus. I had a theory then and it’s proving true: the wealthy will want to come to Tahoe even more now than before. There are a multitude of reasons for this which I’ve described in previous posts (click here). I love talking about this stuff, so feel free to reach out: 530.214.6100.

 

Check this out:

 

Sales volume of properties over $2m: since mid-March volume is up 230% over last year – wow! The number of closed sales since mid-March is almost double what it was same time last year. When you think of what’s going on in the world, this is pretty staggering information.

 

Great for sellers: there are tons of buyers out there.

 

Great for buyers: there are awesome property options and money is almost free with interest rates under 3%.

Get in Touch with Alex

Kingswood Update May 2020

Kingswood has seen the effects of coronavirus. An escrow recently fell out since the 3/13 statewide school closure date, a turning point for our market. However, just like we are seeing in other areas there can be the opposite result from the covid effect – a home in the neighborhood at $800,000 entered escrow on 3/16.

 

While showings are somewhat challenging, real estate has been ruled an essential service so showings are permitted – we just need to be smart in how we handle them. Please see this page for LOTS more info on the Tahoe-Truckee market since 3/13.

 

Kingswood and Kingswood West had a fantastic year in 2019. Sales volume was almost as high as ’16 and ’17 which had the highest sales in the last 15 years including the peak of ’06. 
 
It wasn’t high end sales which drove the Kingswood market – there was only one sale over $1m. There was one sale under $500k. There were 5 sales in the $500k’s; 8 sales in the $600k’s; 10 sales in the $700k’s; and 2 sales in the $900k’s.
 

Quick Stats and Comparisons:

  • 4 active Kingswood + Kingswood West listings from $562k to $1.27m.
  • 2 homes in escrow listed at $639,000 and $800,000.
  • 1 sale thus far in 2020 for $800k ($5,000 over asking price).
  • Number of sales was very high in 2019: 27 vs 19 sales in 2018.
  • Time on market was also up in 2019: 72 days vs 42 in 2018.
 
The Tahoe area from Rubicon to Kings Beach averaged $1.19m sales price. Kingswood averaged $727k last year. The neighborhood is considered to be an upgrade from the Kings Beach grid and a value given nice lot sizes and central location to year-round activities, Tahoe, Northstar, etc.
 
 
My family and I live on Kingswood Drive – I enjoy working in the neighborhood and we love raising our kids here!

Mid-May Lakefront Update

A $19.5m Sunnyside property was promoted off-market and sold almost immediately for $18m.  Sale not yet recorded in MLS.

 

A Rubicon property priced at $9m with beautiful beach and pier entered escrow in 10 days – the lakefront average is 141 days. Note one of the other 2 lakefront sales this year had just 26 days on market.

 

A sweet spot on Flick Point for $8m just entered escrow – was initially offered for $11m.

 

In a nutshell, we have a ton of buyers standing at the gates waiting to be let into the marketplace. Some have crashed the gate and gotten up here to buy! 

 

Things are very interesting. The problem right now is a dearth of lakefront properties available for sale. So these buyers who understand that it’s easier to buy than rent are speeding up the timeline they may have previously set for a potential Tahoe purchase. Time is extremely valuable to these people and so they are buying Tahoe lakefronts now. I see this strong demand continuing for months.

 

Quick Stats

  • 11 active lakefront listings from $2m to $6.25m.
  • Half of these were offered last summer – ouch.
  • 3 lakefronts in escrow now, $3.5m, $8m and $9m
  • Usually 6-10 lakefronts enter escrow between Mid-May and Mid-June – this is primetime.
  • 2019 sales were down 50% from 2018. 2018 volume was nearly double 2017. See chart below.

 

All three lakefront homes which sold this year were not offered last year. This means half the current inventory is stale and has been picked over. We need more lakefronts to sell!

I send videos to buyers who can’t make it up. Here is a sample: The Lakeside Drive house for $3.5m has a great feel but no garage – casual video walk through link.

 

Here are the properties I have listed and am marketing right now. You’ll see that I use high-end video and imagery for each. It all starts with the presentation.

 

20 Crystal Drive, $24,850,000

Main Website: 20CrystalDriveTahoe.com

20 Crystal Flipbook

 

24 Crystal Drive, Coming soon. Price also >$22,950,000

Main Website: 24CrystalDriveTahoe.com

 

2222 Silver Fox. $5,950,000

Main Website: NorthstarCastle.com

Largest home to ever be sold at Northstar.

 

580 Granlibakken Road. $2,950,000

Main Website: Click here

5451′ Ahwahnee-esque log lodge on 3 acres right near downtown Tahoe City.

Get in Touch with Alex

Late April 2020 Lakefront Update

April 17, 2020: How’s the Lakefront Market?

 

Relatively, this winter had been quiet although there were two solid sales: $7.1m and $7.6m. There was a very low price on a Meeks Bay lakefront which sold in 5 days: click here to see MLS listing;  Click here to see my casual video walk through. This property entered escrow on 3/13 which was the Friday that CA announced statewide school closures. As you can see on my Tahoe-Truckee Market Update page, this date was a turning point in our market. I have a ton of info on the market since then here: click here.

 

Current inventory is very low and is getting quite long in the tooth – average time on market for these active listings is 191 days – ouch. I must say, however, some are quite cool. The Lakeside Drive house for $3.5m is has a great feel but no garage – here is my casual video walk through of it.

 

6 total lakefront listings: 5 are under $5.3m and a Flick Point property is being offered for $8.75m; a prime West Shore property with southerly exposure (rare) on 4.5 acres entered escrow before hitting the open market: list price $19.5m.

Where are we headed?

 

We are likely headed to the standstill that is being witnessed in The Bay. But our market lags behind SF’s and so too, it seems, do our social practices. Our school closures and SIP came a week after SF’s and so maybe our real estate market still has some life in it right now for the same reasons.

 

Maybe this is wishful thinking but in the near term I see some activity at the higher price bands. High-end buyers have levels of financial sophistication, diversity, reserves – and patience – to endure a drawn out Covid situation and their desire for a “Tahoe place” gets strengthened in these times. While showings are somewhat challenging, real estate has been ruled an essential service so showings are permitted – we just need to be smart in how we handle them. Again, please see this page for LOTS more info on the market since 3/13.

 

High-end examples: These two properties at $4m and $6m were in escrow before coronovirus hit CA. They removed all contingencies on 3/20 and 3/23 which are two of the worst stock market dates on record: click here. Another example is my $4,375,000 non-lakefrone sale mentioned above. Note: Buyers are needed to drive markets so here is some info on on high-net worth individuals’ and their asset allocation.

 

Who are the high-end buyers?

 

The average age for a Tahoe lakefront buyer is in the mid-50’s. This is the very beginning of Gen X. Based on a 2018 high-net worth study by U.S. Trust, the private banking arm of BofA, Gen X holds about 54% of their wealth in stocks, 16% in bonds, 16% in cash, the rest in alternatives. My financial advisor estimates that he is seeing a 5-10% reduction in portfolios of his higher-net worth clients due to March ‘20 events. Obviously our market activity is significantly diminished but there will be some high net-worth families who still decide to drop in on a nice Tahoe home if there are listings which they are able see.

Where is the fallout?

Stay tuned. It’s too early to say for Tahoe real estate. This article in Curbed (click here) says that things are all but stopping in SF. Since our market follows the City’s, we are likely headed in the same direction. Keep an eye on this page which I will update moving forward.

 

Interesting Notes on 2019

Last winter was noted as a special one when two adjacent lakefronts sold on one of the West Shore’s finest streets, Sunnyside Lane. Of course, these were the Mark Zuckerberg purchases of $22m and $37m. These two purchases were part of a historical run of transactions over $20m. There have been just 8 sales of this magnitude in the last 15 years – 5 of them occurred between April ’18 and Jan ’19 – wow! See more on that in my Spring 2019 update here.

 

Some interesting points to consider vis a vis the 2019 lakefront market. Yes, the notable Zuckerberg sale happened but then the lakefront market sputtered and came in 50% lower than 2018. Average sold price was higher than it’s been in a decade. But, there were 9 unsuccessful, aka expired, listings totalling $52m in volume. This means that some sellers were overly optimistic about the market and buyers weren’t having it.

 

My Incline Village team (Donovan Group) and I represent the highest-level brand new construction in the entire Lake. These are two adjacent listings at $24,000,000 and $22,000,000 in Crystal Bay. Click here to see 20 Crystal DriveClick here for 24 Crystal Drive. We have pulled them from MLS until 20 Crystal is completed this Spring. Currently, the highest Tahoe lakefront price is Chase International’s listing. I was involved in the listing presentation and am a Listing Ambassador for Crystal Pointe, $75,000,000

 

Quick Stats

  • 6 active lakefront listings from $2.6m to a very cool location on Flick Point for $8.75m.
  • 2019 volume and nuber of transactions were both down 50% from 2018. Note that 2018 volumen was almost double 2017.
  • 1 lakefront in escrow
  • Keep an eye on Homewood – we will see if the Gold Rush pricing attempted by numerous unsuccessful sellers in ’19 will carry over or not.

 

Year Over Year Stats

Year Total Volume # Homes Sold Days on Market Ave Price Median Price
2019 $106m 14 149 $8.2m $4.6m
2018 $218m 28 155 $7.8m $4.4m
2017* $124m 27 145 $4.9m $3.8m
2016* $121m 21 182 $5.9m $4.8m
2015* $145m 26 170 $5.6m $4.2m
2014 $121m 30 163 $4m $3.1m
2013* $96m 23 203 $4m $3.5m
2012 $150m 32 338 $4.6m $3.2m

2017: 2*Off-MLS sales:

2016: 3

2015 and 2013: 1

Lake Level

I love keeping an eye on the Lake level. Our seasonal real estate sales activity typically mirrors that of the lake level.

The way to read this chart is to add the ‘gage height’ to elevation 6220′. The legal limit for Tahoe is 6229′. 

See all lakefronts for sale here

See Current TRPA Shoreline Plan Draft here

PDF to TRPA Shoreline Plan Executive Summary May 2018

See TRPA Shoreline Map here: This shows all Lakefront parcels and piers around the entire Lake

See Current Lake Tahoe Planning Benchmarks here

Click here for last Spring’s Lakefront Market Update

 

Get in Touch with Alex

Mid April Detailed Market Update

Updated April 2020:

 

Summary since 3/26:

There are more properties exiting the market than there are entering the market; the numbers were equal two weeks prior. The number of cancelled escrows remains about the same with 7-8/week. The dynamic of higher-end listings having more confidence and re-entering the market was different. The two $1m+ listings that fell out of escrow decided to throw in the towel for now. The number of new escrows is similar to the prior 2 weeks with roughly 7 new deals per week.

 

I am extremely bullish on high-end properties selling during the coronavirus crisis. There have been a number of very high-end sales since mid- and late-March. There is other activity happening off-market, too, at very high levels and I see this continuing throughout this time. See this page which is dedicated to lakefronts but references / speaks to high-end real estate in this entire region: click here.

 

The Details

 

New Listings: I am pretty amazed. There are 20 new listings since my last update on 3/26. Average price $1.2m, high of $8.5m. The $1m+ listings were spread out across our geographic area very evenly. The $8.5m is notable in that it is a non-lakefront home with manicured acreage and multiple pools located across the street from Zuckerberg’s big purchases. I would be very surprised if didn’t buy this as an amenity and for overflow – assuming he has large groups of visitors during non-covid times.

 

Expired Listings: 25 expired listings including two high end West Shore properties. In Tahoe, 100-day listings are very short and rare; 14 of these expireds had under 100 days on market which means they likely cancelled early due to coronavirus.

 

New escrows: There were a total of 7 new escrows since 3/26. Average price $1.1m, high of $2.8m on a beautiful home in Northstar. Interestingly, the Northstar house fell out of escrow on 3/17 due to a spooked buyer. It then re-entered escrow on 4/1. Unlike the new listings, activity was centered in Truckee. The only non-Truckee escrow is an investment property in Kings Beach for $450k.

 

Solds: As we get further from the Shelter In Place order (3/19), the solds are becoming more interesting for two related reasons. These buyers have the financial confidence, cash reserves and very strong desire to aquire that “Tahoe place.” Secondly, since these are typically vacation homes, most of these buyers are ignoring the Shelter In Place order and coming to Tahoe-Truckee to look at homes. For this weekend, CHP has issued a ‘No Travel to Tahoe’ warning: click here to watch video.

 

22 closed escrows since 3/26: Average price $923k, 3 sales over $2m. The closed escrows were spread out across our region but the highest concentration was Tahoe Donner with 4.

 

Are all the escrows falling apart?

Date range 3/26 to 4/4  
Total Failed Escrows 7  
     
Fell out of escrow then back to market as active: Tahoe Basin Truckee
  2 2
  Under $1m Over $1m
  4 0
     
Fell out of escrow then cancelled: Tahoe Basin Truckee
  0 3
  Under $1m Over $1m
  1 2

Dynamics are changing a little. Last update, there were 17 cancellations over the previous 13 days and just 8 cancellations in the last 9 days. Previously the sellers over $1m were showing lots of confidence and re-entering the market after their deals fell apart. This week both escrows over $1m did the opposite and exited the market.

 

Update for March 13-26, 2020

Believe it or not but we are still seeing new listings hit the market, properties entering escrow and also some successful closes of escrow albeit at lower quantities than in pre-coronavirus Springs. While we are seeing a high number of listings exit the market since the Bay Area shelter in place (SIP) started, the number of new listings since then is equal. This means there are an equal number of sellers who are hoping to take advantage of extremely low inventory and there are sellers who are giving things a rest until later – interesting stuff. An important note: sellers over $1,000,000 have more confidence than those at lower levels – more on that below. All ski areas have been closed for weeks and town traffic is way down although there are still people coming up on weekends which is becoming a hot topic. We have seen a lot of second homeowners come to Tahoe for an indeterminate period to weather California’s SIP. 

 

Once things ease up we will have a ton of pent-up demand for Tahoe-Truckee homes. We will likely also have a stock market on the rise and very low interest rates. Of course, none of us know when this will be but there is always a demand for real estate in Tahoe-Truckee. I’ve found that when we have natural disasters, serious buyers focus more attention on Tahoe as a respite from the rigors and realities of sub/urban living. 

 

While showings are somewhat challenging, real estate has been ruled an essential service so showings are permitted – we just need to be smart in how we handle them.

 

Are all the escrows falling apart?

 

I dug deep and have been parsing data to help let you know what’s been happening since the CA-wide school closures on 3/13. I also worked through an extremely challenging escrow for a Dollar Point lakeview home which we closed on 3/24/20 for $4,375,000. At one point a price reduction request was contemplated but alas it didn’t materialize and all parties worked together to get this fantastic sale completed. Note: at $1071/foot, this sale represents the record-high price per foot for a non-lakefront in Dollar Point.

 

As for the data, check this out – I looked at every Active listing as well as all Cancelled/Expired listings since 3/13. It’s easy to find stats on how many homes have left the market/cancelled since then. What is much more difficult to see is this: how many homes had fallen out of escrow. Further, what did those sellers decide to do next – keep trying or throw in the towel?

Date range 3/13 to 3/26  
Total Failed Escrows 18  
     
Fell out of escrow then back to market as active: Tahoe Basin Truckee
  7 7
  Under $1m Over $1m
  9 5
     
Fell out of escrow then cancelled: Tahoe Basin Truckee
  1 3
  Under $1m Over $1m
  4 0

As mentioned above, sellers over $1m are not giving up. Buyers and sellers of high value properties still have levels of confidence.

 

Note: the escrows that fell apart did so quickly, most were under 5 days. This means it was simply weak constitution as opposed to bad inspections aka the cancellations were purely due to coronavirus. One interesting cancellation was a spec home in Old Greenwood for $2.1m which then reentered the market as raw land for $275k. Clearly the seller now prefers to not even attempt to build the home and would rather just shed the land. Interesting stuff.

 

Where are we headed?

 

We are likely headed to the standstill that is being witnessed in The Bay. But our market lags behind SF’s and so too, it seems, do our social practices. Our initial school closures and SIP came a week after SF’s and so maybe our real estate market still has some life in it right now for the same reasons (UPDATE: This trend continues – our schools cancelled the remainder of 2020 exactly a week after the Bay Area did so). Maybe this is wishful thinking but in the near term I see some activity at the higher price bands. High-end buyers have levels of financial sophistication, diversity, reserves – and patience – to endure a drawn out Covid situation and their desire for a “Tahoe place” gets strengthened in these times. However, showings are challenging; we are performing Virtual Showings at this time

 

 

High-end examples: These two properties at $4m and $6m were in escrow before coronovirus hit CA. They removed all contingencies on 3/20 and 3/23 which are two of the worst stock market dates on record: click here. This property in Martis Camp closed on 3/25 for $9,500,000: click here. Another example is my $4,375,000 non-lakefrone sale mentioned above. Note: Buyers are needed to drive markets and so I have info on on high-net worth individuals’ asset allocation further down this page.

 

Where is current market activity?

 

In the Tahoe Basin, 77% of all activity is under $1m. There have been slightly more new listings than there have been Cancelled/Expired listings.

There are 23 single family home escrows averaging $978k with a high of $2.2m. There are a total of 56 active home listings from Rubicon to Kings Beach which is very, very low. Basin Condos are all but dead in the water with 21 actives and just 4 escrows which are all under $478k.

 

Here are all Basin price reductions in the last 13 days which is when CA cancelled all schools: click here; nothing crazy but still interesting to monitor. Usually there are at least a handful of price increases but in the last 2 weeks there have been none.

 

Truckee-Tahoe Donner-Martis Camp have seen similar numbers since 3/13 with the amount of new listings roughly equalling the number which have decided to exit the market for now.

 

In the greater Truckee area, 64% of escrow activity is under $1m. There are a total of 49 escrows; 18 of these started after 3/13. Just 10 of the 158 active listings hit the market since 3/13.

 

 

Here are the 11 Basin homes which went Pending since 3/13 when all schools in CA were closed: click here. The prices range from $295k – $2m. Pending charts for The Basin and Greater Truckee:

Squaw Valley is closed for skiing. Squaw real estate sales were pretty solid pre-March but are now slowing. 20% of listings are in escrow but just 1 entered contract since 3/13. We will see whether or not the escrows hold together.

 

In Northstar, there are 4 home escrows from $1.05m – $2.8m. Click here to see the two which entered escrow since 3/13: click here.  This Northstar escrow for $3.9m fell out of escrow on 3/16: click here. The buyer was spooked by coronovirus’ ramifications. 

 

Where is the fallout?

Stay tuned. It’s too early to say for Tahoe real estate. This article in Curbed (click here) says that things are all but stopping in SF. Since our market follows the City’s, we are likely headed in the same direction. Keep an eye on this page which I will update moving forward.

 

 

Who are the high-end buyers?

 

The average age for a Tahoe lakefront buyer is in the mid-50’s. This is the very beginning of Gen X. Based on a 2018 high-net worth study by U.S. Trust, the private banking arm of BofA, Gen X holds about 54% of their wealth in stocks, 16% in bonds, 16% in cash, the rest in alternatives. My financial advisor estimates that he is seeing a 5-10% reduction in portfolios of his higher-net worth clients due to March ‘20 events. Obviously our market activity is significantly diminished but there will be some high net-worth families who still decide to drop in on a nice Tahoe home if there are listings which they are able see.

 

 


To see my January 2020 aka pre-Corona virus update, click here


 

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Quick Market Data

For more detailed, Tahoe regional breakout stats and charts click here.

 

North + West Shore, single family and condominium sales

Year Total Volume # Units Sold Ave. Days on Market Ave. Price Median Price
2019 $403m 408 76 $990k $601k
2018 $538m 436 71 $1.2m $655k
2017 $431m 475 78 $907k $620k
2016 $351m 408 101 $859k $555k
2015 $371m 434 106 $856k $535k
2014 $396m 346 101 $874k $511k
2013 $420m 307 107 $733k $471k

 

Truckee-Tahoe Donner, single family and condominium sales

 

Year Total Volume # Homes Sold Days on Market Ave. Price Median Price
2019 $445 594 46 $751k $650k
2018 $423 584 41 $725k $638k
2017 $443 656 49 $676k $594k
2016 $372 614 62 $610k $540k
2015 $312m 543 63 $575k $502k
2014 $282m 489 64 $577k $500k
2013 $314m 582 68 $539k $479k

 

Click here for my 2018 Recap

_________________________________________________________

“We are very happy with the deal, Alex. You made it happen and you are a hero.”

– Neil and Karen B. Sellers of 3266 Edgewater. Closed price $8,199,000. Record breaking lakefront sale in Dollar Point.

 

“We enjoyed working with you and will be in touch when we want to sell more property. Thanks again for getting it sold.”

– Bonnie and Ken. Forty-year Tahoe residents with multiple properties and businesses. Had previously worked with another agent.

I start from the perspective of doing what’s right for you and your property. I shoot straight regarding value and how we can maximize the sales price. I am known for creative, high-quality marketing and effective negotiations. I provide personal attention to both you and your property. I keep a foot on the gas throughout escrow. I attend appraisals for unique and high-end properties to ensure value is attained by the buyer’s bank. I watch the details. I use the best stagers, photographers, web developers and the finest print and online media. The end result is your property standing head and shoulders above competing listings and your sale happening efficiently. This is especially powerful when coupled with Chase International: Reno-Tahoe’s regional leader with over $1.5 billion in annual sales.

3266 Edgewater Drive. Sold by Alex for $8.199m, July 2015.

3266 Edgewater Drive. Sold by Alex for $8.199m

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Tahoe-Truckee Real Estate Update 4/4/2020

How’s the Tahoe-Truckee Market?

 

The goal of this page is to give market updates for those who want to stay informed. I have made the decision to not encourage travel from the Bay Area, etc. to Tahoe and am therefore not showing property to buyers nor meeting in-person with sellers. I am actively working every day via phone, virtual meetings, email, text, etc.

 

Updated April 4, 2020:

 

Summary since 3/26:

There are more properties exiting the market than there are entering the market; the numbers were equal two weeks prior. The number of cancelled escrows remains about the same with 7-8/week. The dynamic of higher-end listings having more confidence and re-entering the market was different. The two $1m+ listings that fell out of escrow decided to throw in the towel for now. The number of new escrows is similar to the prior 2 weeks with roughly 7 new deals per week. See full details and more info by clicking here.

 

The Details

 

New Listings: I am pretty amazed. There are 20 new listings since my last update on 3/26. Average price $1.2m, high of $8.5m. The $1m+ listings were spread out across our geographic area very evenly. The $8.5m is notable in that it is a non-lakefront home with manicured acreage and multiple pools located across the street from Zuckerberg’s big purchases. I would be very surprised if didn’t buy this as an amenity and for overflow – assuming he has large groups of visitors during non-covid times.

 

Expired Listings: 25 expired listings including two high end West Shore properties. In Tahoe, 100-day listings are very short and rare; 14 of these expireds had under 100 days on market which means they likely cancelled early due to coronavirus.

 

New escrows: There were a total of 7 new escrows since 3/26. Average price $1.1m, high of $2.8m on a beautiful home in Northstar. Interestingly, the Northstar house fell out of escrow on 3/17 due to a spooked buyer. It then re-entered escrow on 4/1. Unlike the new listings, activity was centered in Truckee. The only non-Truckee escrow is an investment property in Kings Beach for $450k.

 

Solds: As we get further from the Shelter In Place order (3/19), the solds are becoming more interesting for two related reasons. These buyers have the financial confidence, cash reserves and very strong desire to acquire that “Tahoe place.” Secondly, since these are typically vacation homes, most of these buyers are ignoring the Shelter In Place order and coming to Tahoe-Truckee to look at homes. Locals are reporting seeing full parking lots at Safeway on Friday afternoon which is very, very frustrating. For this weekend, CHP has issued a ‘No Travel to Tahoe’ warning: click here to watch video.

 

22 closed escrows since 3/26: Average price $923k, 3 sales over $2m. The escrows were spread out across our region but the highest concentration was Tahoe Donner with 4 sales.

 

Are all the escrows falling apart?

Date range 3/26 4/4
Total Failed Escrows 7  
     
Fell out of escrow then back to market as active: Tahoe Basin Truckee
  2 2
  Under $1m Over $1m
  4 0
     
Fell out of escrow then cancelled: Tahoe Basin Truckee
  0 3
  Under $1m Over $1m
  1 2

Dynamics are changing a little. Last update, there were 17 cancellations over the previous 13 days and just 8 cancellations in the last 9 days. Previously the sellers over $1m were showing lots of confidence and re-entering the market after their deals fell apart. This week both escrows over $1m did the opposite and exited the market.

 

Helping Others

Our family is a huge fan of the Kings Beach Boys & Girls Club. We love the “grab and go” dinners and educational services they are providing since the covid outbreak. They’ve served over 400 dinners in the last couple weeks to local families in need. We donated and you can, too, at this link

 

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Lakefront February 2020 Update

Last winter was noted as a special one when two adjacent lakefronts sold on one of the West Shore’s finest streets, Sunnyside Lane. Of course, these were the Mark Zuckerberg purchases of $22m and $37m. These two purchases were part of a historical run of transactions over $20m. There have been just 8 sales of this magnitude in the last 15 years – 5 of them occurred between April ’18 and Jan ’19 – wow! See more on that in my Spring 2019 update here.

 

So how is 2020 starting off? Relatively, this winter has been quiet although the only two sales thus far were solid: $7.1m and $7.6m. Current inventory is abysmal with 7 total listings: 6 are under $5.3m and a Flick Point property is being offered for $8.75m; a prime West Shore property with southerly exposure (rare) on 4.5 acres is coming soon for $19.5m.

 

Some interesting points to consider vis a vis the 2019 lakefront market. Yes, the notable Zuckerberg sale happened but then the lakefront market sputtered and came in 50% lower than 2018. Average sold price was higher than it’s been in a decade. But, there were 9 unsuccessful, aka expired, listings totalling $52m in volume. This means that some sellers were overly optimistic about the market and buyers weren’t having it.

 

My Incline Village team (Donovan Group) and I represent the highest-level brand new construction in the entire Lake. These are two adjacent listings at $24,000,000 and $22,000,000 in Crystal Bay. Click here to see 20 Crystal Drive. Click here for 24 Crystal Drive. We have pulled them from MLS until 20 Crystal is completed this Spring. Currently, the highest Tahoe lakefront price is Chase International’s listing. I was involved in the listing presentation and am a Listing Ambassador for Crystal Pointe, $75,000,000

 

Quick Stats

  • 7 active lakefront listings from $2m to a very cool location on Flick Point for $8.75m.
  • 2019 volume and nuber of transactions were both down 50% from 2018. Note that 2018 volumen was almost double 2017.
  • 0 lakefronts in escrow
  • Keep an eye on Homewood – we will see if the Gold Rush pricing attempted by numerous unsuccessful sellers in ’19 will carry over or not.

 

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