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With steady population growth and wealth creation in Northern California has come surging demand for regional vacation space; whether through ownership opportunities or rental demand. Embedded in the culture of Northern Californians is the pilgrimage, weekly for many, up Highway 80 to the Tahoe-Truckee region. Throughout a stellar winter, this demand has been obvious with full restaurants, sold out lodging and strong early-season real estate sales.

The typical pattern for a real estate consumer is to rent 3-5 times during a season, generally inclusive of Christmas / New Years, President’s Week and Spring Break with several spontaneous weekend trips sprinkled in between. Upon finding rhythm to such trips, the concept of ownership will become apparent.

Using rental demand as a barometer of future demand for vacation ownership, the region is strongly trending upwardly. Property management firms throughout the region are reporting excellent results nearing the tail end of a sensational winter season.

Jim Winterberger of Tahoe Getaways indicates that premium winter resort homes are generally the strongest performing class of rentals relative to asset value. While summer is steady and predictable, great winter conditions offer the best opportunity to outperform expectations.

Constellation Northstar has reported a 32% increase in room nights year-over-year through Q1. This success is based equally on strong economic conditions and near-historic snowfall. The more premium holiday weeks are typically booked months in advance before snow conditions are apparent providing a better reflection of disposable income whereas near term bookings are generated based upon demand for skiing great conditions.