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Luxury Sales Lead the Market in May

Sales of luxury resort property surged in the month of May with 23 homes selling for $1,000,000 or more. May is often a busy month as transactions entered into at the end of winter often close escrow during this period. And close they did with five Northstar properties trading, including another two sales of Home Run Residences above $2,400,000 plus another four properties in Squaw Valley from $435,000 – $853,000.  Martis Camp saw the sale of seven completed homes in May, including the highest sale ever published in that community for $7,050,000.  This home, sited near the ski slope and Alpine Lodge, combined with the recent sales success of Mountainside’s Home Run are strong indicators of an emerging premium for immediate access to the mountain and its activities, and an acknowledgment of the rising stature of Northstar as a world-class destination resort.

While Lake  Tahoe has been the principle draw to the region historically, a new generation of affluent consumers are finding the right fit for their families at Northstar. The opportunity to live luxuriously in the shadow of The Ritz-Carlton while engaging with nature in a setting conducive to quality time and activity with multiple generations is apparent.

Average Price Increases

Activity in the overall Tahoe region remained strong with 133 total transactions totaling $114,144,215, $20,000,000 more than the previous next best month year-to-date. While the total number of transactions exactly mirrors that same month in 2013, average price is 40% higher thanks to this overwhelming run of luxury sales. For the year, median price is up 16% despite a (previously) supply constrained market.

As many potential sellers begin to realize that their home’s equity is nearing its peak value from 2006, the onslaught of new homes typical of spring has been magnified. 317 properties have come to market in the past 30 days alone bringing total inventory for the region up to 899. While this is far from an over saturated market, it does raise the supply to 7.5 months after hovering below 6 months for most of the past year. While many of these sellers are undoubtedly seeking irrational buyers through speculative asking price, the median asking price of all current inventory is only 2% above the median sales price for 2014; a strong indicator that the current velocity of sales should at least maintain at present levels.

As we enter our summer season, one not dependent on any weather other than the predictably perfect daily high of 75 degrees, the region appears poised for greater success. Memorial Day Weekend, often a non-event for retail or transient activity based upon variable weather and school calendars, brought significant crowds and an earlier-than-usual start to the season.

We hope you will find time to visit in the near future and look forward to keeping you updated on the dynamics of our market.

Best regards,

Jeff Brown