Incline Village real estate: Lake Tahoe is not one real estate market |

Incline Village real estate: Lake Tahoe is not one real estate market

Don Kanare and Sabrina Belleci
Special to the Sun-Bonanza
Don Kanare and Sabrina Belleci, ReMax Realty

Weekly real estate update

Weekly Real Estate Update

Statistics gathered from the Incline Village MLS on 2/26/17

Houses Condos PUDs

For Sale 95 38 17

Under $1 million 18 31 7

Median Price For Sale $1,998,000 $579,000 $1,099,000

New Listings 2

In Escrow 2

Closed Escrow 2

Range in Escrow $389,000 - $978,000

These statistics are based on information from the Incline Village Board of REALTORS® or its Multiple Listing Service as of February 26, 2017

As we move toward Spring and look forward to a busy Summer selling season it’s that time of year when real estate agents, brokers and various media types write articles, spew statistics and provide commentary on the Lake Tahoe real estate market.

Unfortunately, most of this material is irrelevant and misleading because Lake Tahoe is not one real estate market but many submarkets each divided into a number of sectors.

You can’t even legitimately lump together the sales of communities in North Lake Tahoe or South Lake Tahoe and extrapolate prices or trends because there are too many submarkets on each side of the Lake.

Just in Incline Village and Crystal Bay we have 12 different market sectors for residential property. Then you also have to consider the multiunit investment residential properties, commercial properties, and raw land.

So, anyone writing generalizations about the Lake Tahoe real estate market and then trying to use those broad statistics to make sweeping statements is simply misleading the general public with inaccurate information.

It’s a disservice to buyers, sellers and anyone connected with the real estate community to spout statistics that do not accurately reflect local market conditions.

The Incline Village real estate market bears absolutely no relation to the Kings Beach area which bears no relation to Squaw Valley real estate and so on.

It may be difficult for non-residents of Lake Tahoe to accept that there are so many different markets within the Lake Tahoe basin but that is the harsh reality. If you have been shopping for single-family homes at South Lake Tahoe and then go to Glenbrook because on the map it doesn’t look very far away you will most likely get sticker shock.

Even within the Incline Village and Crystal Bay real estate market new buyers are easily confused by the widely varying prices for properties of similar square footage and condition. We are not just talking about the difference between a house on a busy street versus one in a quiet location with a panoramic Lakeview.

Some subdivisions are considered more desirable than others based on location, proximity to the beach, lot size, sunlight exposure and other factors. You can’t just say houses in Incline Village are worth X dollars per square foot because there are so many variables one must consider.

Now take that concept and expand it to every community and subdivision around Lake Tahoe. You can easily see why making generalizations about the Lake Tahoe real estate market results in gross inaccuracies and misinformation.

Each community needs to be considered a separate real estate market with several sub-sectors and analyzed on its own particular attributes and merits.

So, when you read statistics about the average or median price for Lake Tahoe real estate consider the material to be nothing more than entertainment and not something factual that you can rely on for decision-making or discussion purposes.

The only way to truly know how a particular market sector within the Lake Tahoe basin is performing is to do a detailed comparable market analysis for that specific area.

It takes a lot of time and energy to crunch the numbers, analyze individual properties and draw realistic conclusions, something that a generic algorithm on a Zillow computer in Florida cannot come close to doing.

And watch out for those out of area appraisers if you are buying or selling a home at Lake Tahoe. Property values in the basin bear absolutely no relation to the Reno / Carson City area where many appraisers come from.

So, when you see an article, chart, or graph that makes generalizations and lumps all of North Shore, South Shore or the entire Lake Tahoe area together as one real estate market just turn the page, unless you like reading fiction.

Don Kanare and Sabrina Belleci are the owners of RE/MAX North Lake. Read their blog and find weekly stats on their website at

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