Buyer Confidence Is High in Reno-Tahoe Real Estate Market

Sierra Sotheby’s International Realty LogoRENO, NV - In what’s traditionally known as one of the slowest times of year for the Lake Tahoe and surrounding area real estate markets, data is showing a continued uptrend in sales volume as compared to this time last year. First quarter data for the area points toward another robust year for home sales in 2018.

Despite challenging inventory, a nominal increase in interest rates, uncertain tax implications and a slow start to winter, market confidence continues to flourish region-wide.

Scarcity of inventory has driven the average sales price up across most markets while average days on market continues to vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. The overall list price versus sale price improved by several percentage points over last year, which is largely credited to an increase in bidding situations for desirable homes.

Total Volume Sold

“Activity across the full price spectrum remained robust, however, demand for homes valued under $700,000 was exceptionally active,” said Jeff Hamilton, Vice President of Northern California operations for Sierra Sotheby’s International Realty. “More and more buyers in this price category are finding themselves in competitive bidding situations, so as long as our market is defined by a lack of inventory, we expect to see that trend continue. After a relatively mild winter we anticipate an earlier than usual influx of inventory that comes with the traditional spring/summer selling season.”

The higher end of the market also continued to thrive in first quarter with Incline Village showing a 121 percent increase in homes sold over $1 million, South Lake reported an 80 percent improvement and Reno reported an impressive 325 percent increase in homes sold over $1 million.

Ultra high net worth buyers and sellers are participating in the wave of confidence. “We’re seeing a trend with high net worth sellers who want to list their property discretely, off-market,” says Scott Tieche, broker for Sierra Sotheby’s International Realty in Incline Village. “The pent-up demand for lakefront properties in good condition with convenient lake access has allowed us to match these sellers with qualified buyers rather quickly and with multiple offers in some cases,” adds Tieche. “It’s a good time to be a seller across all price points so long as your property is priced right.”

Multiple offer situations and competition from investors has become the new normal for the Reno market according to Phil Reed, broker of the Sierra Sotheby’s International Realty’s Reno office. “Buyers who are looking for homes valued under $500,000 cannot be faint of heart and must be ready to come to the table with cash and/or strong pre-approvals in hand at time of offer.”

“Single family homes priced between $600,000 to $1 million are proving to be the sweet spot in the Reno market,” says Reed. “Homes that are in good condition and priced well, should sell within a matter of days as opposed to weeks or months as compared to 2017.”

Reed says single-story floor plans in Reno’s popular golf course neighborhoods and large ranch-style parcels in Southwest Reno are in high demand. “The thirst for country living with a proximity to a city lifestyle is seemingly insatiable.”

When talking about market activity, it important to understand that between Truckee, North and South Lake Tahoe, Incline Village and Reno, the regional real estate market is made up of four independent multiple listing services spanning two states and multiple counties. And because each unique community reacts differently to market trends, Sierra Sotheby’s International Realty compiles data from all four multiple listing services and breaks it down by neighborhood to help buyers and sellers make more informed real estate decisions.

Understanding the average list versus sale price variance or knowing the average days on market for a given neighborhood can prepare buyers and sellers for a multiple offer situation or paint a better picture of fair market value.

For a closer look at these detailed market trends broken down by neighborhood visit