How’s the Lakefront Market?

Spring 2019 Update


Can you say “wow?!”


Over $20,000,000 there have been 7 sales reported in our MLS since 2005. An 8th occurred but wasn’t recorded in MLS (it was a Chase International sale). Of these 8 uber sales, 5 occurred within 9 months of each other: April 2018 – January 2019. Two of these sold in less than a week on the market. The highest sale, $40m, actually sold before hitting the open market and had a 7 day escrow. There were multiple offers on a $37,000,000 property in Incline Village.


This is historical stuff…


Current inventory is as low as I’ve ever seen but it is slowly building. An entry level property hit the market in early April for $1.9m bringing current the current inventory level to 8 active lakefront listings. I know of a West Shore property coming on for $9.8m, multiple Homewood parcels and I’ve been talking with multiple sellers who are considering a sale in this prime market time.


In the $2m – $4m range we saw many very quick sales in the last year. A number of these occurred off-market. There were a couple sales which closed at surprisingly high numbers compared to market expectations – one West Shore sale was $1.5m higher than many seasoned brokers estimated. This only took one showing and the property went into contract before it saw the open market. Due to this sale a nearby property increased its price by $1m and received multiple offers. Wow. Another pleasant surprise was one of my lakefront listings which sold for a premium price: click here to see 2780 Lake Terrace.


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. Website for 24 Crystal Drive is coming soon. 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 2019 Stats

  • 8 active lakefront listings from $1.9m to $15,900,000 (Chase International listing).
  • I know of more than a few upcoming lakefront listings. Keep an eye on Homewood – the unbelievable Gold Rush there is going to kick into a much higher gear this year
  • 5 lakefronts in escrow: up to $7,250,000, includes my listing at 2562 Lake Forest Road.
  • 4 solds thus far, up to $37,000,000
  • 2018 Lakefront Sold Volume was roughly 2x higher than 2017!


Year Over Year Stats

Year Total Volume # Homes Sold Days on Market Ave Price Median Price
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

*Off-MLS sales:

2017: 2

2016: 3

2015 and 2013: 1

Lake Level

I love keeping an eye on the Lake level. You may have noticed that recently the Watermaster has been releasing a ton of water. The Truckee River is quite swollen – huge glacier-like snow edges are falling into the river which looks pretty amazing. River Ranch is a great spot to see the force of the high river.

The way to read this chart is to add the ‘gage height’ to elevation 6220′. The legal limit for Tahoe is 6229′. So you can see we hit that last June. We are currently slightly higher than last March yet there is much more snow than  last spring. Hence the Watermaster increasing the flow rates recently.


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

Midsummer 2018 Lakefront Market Update  incl. 4.5 (!) case studies, click here.

Click here for my 2017 Lakefront Market 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.


Tahoe Lakefronts are a market unto themselves. Selling them has traditionally been done in an old school way – take some nice photos, put them on MLS and tell buyers the same story over and over.

I have a different approach.

Selling Tahoe lakefronts well requires expertise, knowledge, attention and high-level marketing. I meet with top lakefront planners to know the maximum potential of every individual property. I target the most likely buyer pools and effectively reaches them with creative, quality marketing. I know off-market sales and tracks buyer activity across the board. I measure water depths at piers and buoys. During showings I don’t pitch buyers but rather make them feel comfortable. I learn what they are looking for and perform every showing differently.

The results speak for themselves. My sale of a Dollar Point home for $8.199m represents the highest dollar amount ever for a North Shore property under 5000′. My clients got 25% more than the lakefront MLS average price per square foot. See the website I created which was critical to this success:

I was also able to sell a 50% share of a 100 year-old cabin (represented buyer and seller). I also sold the former Le Petit Pier building which had been sitting idle and another broker unsuccessfully marketed it for over a year. I represented buyer and seller. In addition I entirely sold out a brand lakefront condo complex – the first in 40 years!

There are a multitude of things I do differently. I work with Chase International because of its track record, reputation and its incredibly powerful network. We annually sell over $1 Billion in real estate. Click here to see how Tahoe brokerages rank in the luxury marketplace.


I send out a monthly update about the lakefront market - off-market activity, multiple offers, miraculous deals and also escrows on life support. I have info on buyer origins and locations, the lake level and more. Sign up to stay informed.

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