The South Lake Tahoe real estate report for the Tahoe Paradise neighborhood as of December 31, 2012 shows positive notes in all of the categories followed below. When comparing the fourth quarter of 2012 to the same period during 2011, we find that the number of closed sales rose slightly and the median sale price increased significantly. The time on the market was less for these sales and the dollar per square foot increased over the past year. The list to sale ratio also rose from 2011. Following are the actual comparisons for the various categories mentioned above as compared to those reported in 2011.
|2012 4th Quarter Comparison||2012||2011|
|Number of Sales||10||8|
|Median Home Price||$321,000||$193,500|
|Average List to Sale Ratio||97.7%||92.3%|
|Median Dollar Per Square Foot||$178||$122|
|Days on the Market||76||105|
Current Market Conditions – January 4, 2013
As of January 4, 2013, the Tahoe Paradise neighborhood reports 4 homes on the market ranging from a minimum of $389,000 to $550,000. The basic law of supply and demand is described in real estate terms as the “absorption rate.” Absorption rate (or monthly supply of inventory) are a calculation based upon the rate of closed sales to active listings. It is an accurate way to keep track of market trends. A balanced market is when there is a six-month supply of homes indicating that there are enough inventories to supply the demand. Less than six months is considered a seller’s market and greater than six months is a buyer’s market. As of December 31, 2012 the Tahoe Paradise neighborhood is reporting an average monthly supply of 3.7 as compared to 6.5 at the same time in 2011.
The above information is taken from statistics provided by the South Lake Tahoe Association of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Services and while deemed to be accurate, are not guaranteed.
As an international resort destination, the majority of South Lake Tahoe homes actually belong to folks not living with the area. Many of these homes have been enjoyed by extended families for decades. Sadly, many of the owners on the property titles are nearing the end of their lives. It is not at all unusual for us to be notified by a family member that a family member has passed and they now need to sell the property through the process of probate.
If you or someone you know finds themselves in a position of being involved with a real estate transaction involving probate, the escrow officer will require the following in order to process the transaction: A certified copy of the order confirming sale for the estate of the vestee for recording; or if you chose to use the Independent Administration of Estates Act (IAE), the following:
1. A copy of letters of testamentary with the name of the administrator or/executor and that they have been given full authority to administer the estate under the provisions of the IAEA
2. Copy of notice of proposed action to be taken
3. Letter from an attorney for the estate confirming (a.) that the personal representative has such authority and that it has not been revoked (b.) that all parties entitled to notice of the proposed action have been given notice and when, and that no objections have been received and (c.) that there are sufficient assets in the estate to fully satisfy any federal and/or California estate taxes that are due and payable, or that there are no federal and/or California taxes due.
4. If the deceased used their Social Security number as the Tax ID, the estate will need to request a new Tax ID number.
For more information on this topic or questions referring to specific needs, we highly recommend contacting one of our local title and escrow companies. No one knows the process in regards to local South Lake Tahoe nuances better than these professionals. You can find these answers by calling either Placer Title (who provided us with the above steps) at 1-530-542-1811 or Old Republic Title at 1.530.544.0100. Both are superb companies and we love the friendly service.
The New York Times recently ran an article discussing the potential difficulties in obtaining a loan as a free-lance or self-employed borrower. (Quite common throughout the Lake Tahoe area.) In the article, they referred the stringent guidelines set forth during the recent credit crunch in which being a freelancer was, simply put, a deal breaker. Yet, today’s real estate market is ripe with opportunity for those seeking home ownership or investments. What’s a successful entrepreneur to do?
It’s going to take a bit of extra work however, the payoff is worth it. The following guidelines are provided through the California Association of REALTORS and show that with a little extra effort, freelance workers can still qualify for one of today’s remarkable loans.
1. It’s important that independent contractors show that their income is stable and increasing. For some, that may mean declaring all their income on their tax returns, and not, say, carrying anything over to the next year, even if it means paying more taxes.
2. Consistency in income is key, so those applying for a mortgage this fall or winter should be prepared to provide proof for year-to-date income.
3. To increase the chances of getting a mortgage approval, borrowers should pay off other debts, including balances on credit cards.
4. Pinpointing the source of the down payment also is helpful. If the down payment will be a gift from a relative, borrowers are advised to submit an account statement showing the funds are available and awaiting the home purchase. Same goes for borrowing from a 401(k).
5. Freelancers also should be prepared for a more in-depth analysis of their ability to repay the debt. Submitting tax returns from the last three years and explaining any significant differences in income is advised.
All indicators are that the Lake Tahoe real estate market will take some time to recover. If you are thinking of taking advantage of today’s home values, meet with a mortgage broker or lender and find out what steps you will need to take to put yourself in the position of the most potential. Offers accompanied with a pre-approval letter from a lending institution have considerable weight in negotiations, especially in the case of multiple offer situations or bank-owned sales.
If this is the year you decided to tackle those BMP’s (Best Management Practices) and Spanish is your primary language, you may want to take advantage of the upcoming workshop. Next Thursday, April 28th, an introduction to BMPs and how they work to protect the quality and clarity of Lake Tahoe will be held and taught in Spanish. Within this program, participants will learn how to install the various types of BMPs correctly. These will include:
1. Vegetation and mulch
2. Infiltrating storm water runoff from impervious surfaces
3. Driveways and conveyance of runoff
4. Slope stabilization for slopes over 50%
The programs will be held Thursday, April 28th from 7:50 am – 4:45 pm at the Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences at Sierra Nevada College (999 Tahoe Blvd,. Incline Village, Nevada) as well as Monday, May 9th from 5 pm – 8:30 pm at the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency which is located at 128 Market Street in Stateline, Nevada. All participants will receive a free BMP manual in Spanish.
To register (FREE), call (775) 832-4144 or www.unce.unr.edu/adhoc/bmpworkshopre. All attendees will receive a booklet in Spanish.
For those not sure as to what the BMP’s are all about, the following is an excerpt from the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency adn will provide a brief introduction.
Best Management Practices (BMPs) are methods to help developed properties function more like natural, undisturbed forest and meadowland. Water that is conveyed to a lake by an undisturbed watershed is usually quite pure, because the watershed’s soils and plants act as a natural water purification system. BMPs help developed properties mimic natural conditions, preventing sediment and nutrients from entering our surface waters and filtering runoff water through the soil. By implementing BMPs, property owners can help slow the loss of lake clarity.
BMPs for residential properties usually fall into the following categories: vegetating and mulching bare, disturbed soils; infiltrating stormwater runoff from impervious surfaces; paving dirt driveways and roads; and stabilizing or retaining steep slopes and loose soils.
Mulching and vegetating soils helps them to absorb rain and snowmelt like a sponge, mimicking natural conditions. TRPA regulations require that native and/or adaptive vegetation is planted, reducing the amount of irrigation and fertilization needed, thereby reducing nutrient loading and runoff even further. Runoff from impervious surfaces is stored and infiltrated in specially designed systems, which allows the storm water to filter through the soil instead of letting it collect and run off the property.
The University of Nevada’s Cooperative Extension released an informative brochure.
Although Lake Tahoe has weathered the current foreclosure issues better than most areas, we have not escaped the overall effect. As of January 1, 2009, the South Tahoe Association of Realtors MLS services report 28 closed sales, 18 currently in escrow and 17 currently active. There are some great opportunities for qualified buyers and with today’s record low interest rates, many prospective buyers will find themselves skipping joyfully into a new home.
At the same time, sadly beause times are tough, pathetic low-life scammers raise their ugly heads. In fact, there is a down-right explosion going on. We all seem to be inundated with those annoying telemarketing calls, unwanted spam email or direct mail. If you or someone you know is facing foreclosure and are looking into potential solutions to prevent losing a home, it is crucial to be very aware of deals that sound too good to be true.
The California Association of Realtors has prepared a list of RED FLAG RESCUE SCAMS outlined below.
* Asks for money upfront before providing any service
* Instructs you not to contact your lender, lawyer, housing counselor, family, friend or others.
* Asks for mortgage payments to be made directly to a company or bank account set up by the “negotiator” rather than your lender.
* Requires payments only in the form of cash, cashier check or money wire.
* Promises to stop the foreclosure process, no matter the circumstances.
* Advises you to transfer your property deed or title to the “negotiator’s” company.
* Offers to fill out the paperwork for you
* Asks for something to be done immediately and without delay. This includes pressuring you into signing paperwork that you have not had the chance to read thoroughly or do not fully understand.
* Encourages you to lease your house and buy it back over time.
* Offers to purchase your house for a fixed price that is not set by the housing market at the time of sale
* Asks for you to give a power of attorney
* Refuses or fails to put an oral promise in writing.
* Fails to provide copies of signed documents
* Asks for signatures on a document that has lines left blank.
* Asks for signatures on a grant deed or deed of trust
If you are approached by a scam artist, please report the incident to one of the following ñ and then run.
California Attorney General (http://ag.ca.gov)
California Department of Real Estate (www.dre.ca.gov)
Department of Housing and Urban Development (www.hud.gov)
Federal Trade Commission (www.ftc.gov)
Your local Better Business Bureau (www.bbb.org)
Finally, if you are at risk of foreclosure or have already received a foreclosure notice, you should contact your lender immediately. You may also want to visit the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) website at http://www.hud.gov/ and look for the Guide to Avoiding Foreclosure and its list of California HUD-approved housing counseling agencies.
Copies of the above information are available if needed. Just give us contact us at Souers@HomeInTahoe.com. We’re here to help.