As the native birds build their nests and the bears come out of hibernation, Listing season has arrived once again on the Nevada side of North Lake Tahoe. Based on statistics gathered from the Incline Village MLS there are a total of 32 new listings in just the past two weeks. This is the time of year when the inventory rises on a steady basis as sellers put their properties on the market after the winter hiatus.
As of this writing there are 120 houses, 72 condos and 16 freestanding condos listed for sale on the Incline Village MLS. While this inventory level is slightly higher than at the same time in 2013 the number of properties for sale during the third week of April is down approximately 30% when compared with the same time in 2012 and down 50% versus the start of the recession in 2009. The current number of properties for sale in Incline Village and Crystal Bay reflects a healthy market where we can anticipate some upward pressure on prices during the coming year. We are not in a new bubble but we are also not going to see the dramatic price increases that occurred between January 2012 and the summer of 2013 when our market rebounded off multi-year lows.
During the spring of 2014 we have seen between four and 10 houses, condos and freestanding condos getting accepted offers each week. This steady pace of sales activity will likely increase as we get closer to summertime. Historically, the Incline Village / Crystal Bay real estate market sees the greatest number of sales during the time period from May through October. With a strong economy in Northern California, the stock market near all-time highs and unseasonably warm weather at Lake Tahoe it is likely that we will see buyers continuing to pour in from California and other parts of the country.
Many buyers like to get ahead of the summertime crowds and with the market bringing us new listings almost every day this is a great time of year for buyers and their agents to remain constantly vigilant. We are seeing multiple offer situations on a regular basis and I anticipate this trend to continue during the busy summer months for the most desirable properties that are priced to attract attention.
An important part of getting a new listing noticed is putting each property on the weekly Tuesday morning MLS tour for all of the agents to preview. Since the vast majority of buyers live at least a couple of hours away (if not further), it is absolutely critical for sellers to provide an opportunity for Incline Village and Crystal Bay real estate agents to see each new listing and determine whether or not there are prospective buyers already waiting in the wings. Out of area buyers rely on the expertise of their local agent to inform them of the new listings that may be of interest, since pictures on the Internet don’t tell the whole story.
And with demand having ramped up considerably during the past two years it is more important than ever for agents to preview properties and inform their buyers in a timely fashion. Many buyers miss out on writing an offer for what could have been their dream home at Tahoe simply because they live too far away to personally visit every interesting new listing before it gets snapped up by someone else who is more closely monitoring the market.
With for-sale signs going up on a regular basis sellers are busily preparing their properties by cleaning, de-cluttering, landscaping, doing repairs, and performing other tasks to make their places look attractive. There are a lot of positive side effects to the local economy during new listing season as home staging specialists, architects, contractors, landscapers and repair people of all types perform services to get properties in showing condition. As sure as the spring flowers start to bloom and the Aspen trees turn green, the North Lake Tahoe economy welcomes new listing season each year with the joy and anticipation that winter is over and the summer season will soon be upon us.