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For generations of consumers waterfront property has been the gold standard of prestigious Lake Tahoe real estate. The finite supply of privately owned lakefront parcels combined with the legendary tales of the characters who owned them created the rarest of air in this mountain environment. 

As lakeside properties have aged, combined with a restrictive regulatory environment, new and exciting planned communities have emerged with Truckee addresses that have created an entirely new definition of luxury. Offering open space, direct connection to skiing and comprehensive amenity packages, these communities have appealed to a new generation of consumer for whom Lake Tahoe waterfront has become a nice-to-have but hardly an essential part of the equation.

In April 2016 alone, 11 properties in the Tahoe Truckee region traded for amounts greater than $1,500,000. Of these, 9 were in communities in the Martis Valley versus just two in the Tahoe Basin. Martis Camp alone transacted 6 home sales including a record high $8,900,000 for a property backing to neither skiing nor golf; rather National Forest offering the most immediate possible connection to a world of recreation. In all of 2015 there were only 11 lakefront sales on the north and west shores of Lake Tahoe. 

Beyond Martis Camp, Northstar’s Mountainside saw a $3,500,000 closing within the Stellar Collection providing a substantial value on slopeside living.  Lahontan and Schaffer’s Mill similarly participated in the region’s surge of activity in the luxury segment.

In 2016, 6 lakefront properties have traded at an average of $4,320,000. Average price in Martis Camp is $4,867,000 year-to-date with more than double the number of transactions.

The overall Tahoe Truckee market continues on a strong pace for 2016. While the number of transactions fell 5% month over month; a phenomena typical of the season, average price is soaring by 16% largely driven by the sales references above. From April, sales typically grow progressively through October. This trend was exacerbated in 2015 by a lackluster winter causing a lackluster first half only to see momentum soar in the latter half.

At the end of a strong comeback winter, a more gradual growth curve is likely. Nevertheless, market conditions continue to indicate steady growth in the months to come. 

A series of late spring storms have created a unique circumstance whereby the end of skiing and the opening of hiking, biking and golf season have blurred. Regardless of the sport, spring promises to be exceptional.

Best Regards,

Jeff Brown
Managing Broker