Bay Area shoppers flock to Lake Tahoe when the summer season officially begins.
Jeff Brown, owner and director of Tahoe Mountain Realty, has lived and worked in Tahoe for 26 years. “The market here is scorching hot and showing no sign of slowing down. Right now, demand is in line with peak activity last summer, ”says Brown. “In a normal year … our season usually starts on July 4ththe. This was our busiest first and second quarters of all time, following the busiest second half of 2020 ever. ”
If you look at May 2021 compared to May 2020, the numbers tell the story. According to the Tahoe Sierra Multiple Listing Service, which includes the Californian side of North Tahoe and the Truckee area of California, 161 units (both single-family and condominiums) were sold for a total of $ 217.4 million in sales in May 2021 . That’s 79 units as of May 2020 with total sales of $ 68.6 million.
For those looking for a modern mountain retreat, this four-bedroom wood and glass house is on sale in Truckee’s Martis Camp for $ 5.895 million. The 2,177-acre luxury community is a draw for Bay Area buyers. “The pandemic has redefined the definition of the second home market,” explains Brown. “Young families wanted to invest in a year-round mountain life. Remote working and distance learning made this possible. ”
Unlike buyers in a few other vacation areas across the country, including the Hamptons and the Palm Springs area, Bay Area Tahoe buyers have kept their primary residences, according to Brown. “A significant number of new buyers have made the Tahoe area their primary residence over the past year. Even if the kids go back to school in the fall and their parents go back to the office, the idea of having a slice of the mountain lifestyle has held up, ”notes Brown, pointing to a large influx of tech and venture capital buyers.
Another listing from Truckee is this 2,275-square-foot home in the Northstar Resort. The design, built from a number of converted shipping containers, is contemporary and unmistakable. The price is $ 3,295,000.
It is not surprising that the homes of choice for multiple homeowners are located in luxurious private resort communities with all amenities for all ages and all seasons. “This target buyer is the young Bay Area family whose children still live at home. You’re looking for an anecdote about the unplanned hustle and bustle of traffic and screen time, ”says Brown. “They tell me they are buying a second home to live healthier families.” Brown notes the difference between second home buyers in Tahoe and vacation home buyers. “Bay Area buyers are mostly second home buyers. Owning a second home means these buyers are more likely to come for shorter stays. A holiday home buyer is more goal-oriented, comes for seldom longer stays and often flies here. ”
As in many other sought-after resorts, Tahoe is extremely scarce. “The permanent inventory is almost empty,” says Brown. “We might have supplies for about a month. The competition is so intense that stocks sell almost instantly when they hit the market. ”An unprecedented market groundwork of interest is that some sellers are afraid to leave the market because they fear they won’t be able to get back in because prices are up 30 to 40% compared to a few years ago. Sellers who may have sold now but don’t want to take their chips off the table yet, ”explains Brown.
As we enter the midsummer and vacation season, Brown doesn’t expect demand to fade anytime soon. “Tahoe is a special place, and more and more people are realizing that and want to own real estate here.”