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Tahoe Update


Tahoe Update

Greetings Fellow Life Travelers:

Last Saturday I attended a Tahoe Fund meeting to present updates for Forest Management in our Lake Tahoe Basin.  There were two main presenters and then a panel including agencies from both CA and NV and the US Forest Service. The first presentation was for Land Tender, a cloud-based planning, monitory and reporting tool developed by Vibrant Planet and presented by Scott Conway, co-founder and ex US Forrester.  This amazing program combines science, land management and team to determine the most vulnerable pockets for fire impact, taking into account all the related assets – residences, transportation routes and public venues just for starters.   From an historic standpoint, there were 2M trees in the Basin; now there over 24M.  Over the years, with increased population, we have suppressed natural fires, enabling an enormous increase in fuel.  When a major fire happens, old growth trees succumb along with the young ones.  With natural fires, the youngest ones get cleared out, leaving the mature trees to exist.  The local Indian Americans living on these lands knew how to deal with this.  Today we deal with much more intense fires, with warming climate, increased population and a strong environmental stand against taking trees down the reason.  Fortunately, the environmental community is now at the table for the ongoing discussion about how to properly handle Forest Management going forward.  The issue is dealing with numerous agencies, each of which has its own way of managing its stewardship…US Forest Service, CA State Lands, NV State Lands, CAL Fire, and a myriad of other agencies involved in permitting, etc.  Land Tender, being able to identify the problem areas, is producing information in minutes that, up to now, has taken months and years to ascertain.  Even home insurance came up in the question period, with an answer that is definitely a subject that’s starting to be addressed for residential enclaves and areas that are doing a great job of defensible space.  Per Land Tender, the whole area along/adjacent the lake is not considered a hazard area, yet those owners are being treated as if they are in the middle of the forest. The majority of homeowners in the Basin and surrounding area has been cancelled for fire insurance, with few and expensive options for coverage.  So, it’s exciting to see collaboration happening between the agencies and government departments.   

The second presentation was for Tahoe Forest Products Sawmill in Carson City.  This is an exciting collaboration between the Washoe Tribe – their motto is “Washoe Tribe Healthy Forests” – and local agencies to process the dead trees from the Basin.  The Sierra-at-Tahoe ski area was heavily impacted by fire, and they cannot open until all the dead trees are removed from the site.  Right now, the new facility that will be operational by May 2023, has 15M board feed of trees ready to process. This private investment facility is not without risk as it will depend on dead trees to process going forward.  The USFS and State Lands are both opening up forest thinning again, another way to clean the forests of overgrowth.  This has been suppressed, mostly by environmental concerns of not taking down trees, for decades. Now we’re seeing a change in approach to good management of our beautiful forests.  Lots more information for all of us to come; exciting to hear about the progress.  And, Tahoe Fund’s Smartest Forest Fund is a way to help get great forest health projects done around Tahoe –

Know this was lengthy, but subject is so primary on our minds.  Now to the next thing on our minds….real estate.

  • Residential Real Estate – week 12/3 – 12/9
  • Tahoe Sierra MLS – North/West Shores & Truckee.  New Listings – 8; Escrows – 8; Solds – 15
  • Incline Village/Crystal Bay MLS.  New Listings – 1; Escrows – 2; Solds – 2
  • East Shore, NV MLS.  New Listings – 2; Escrows – 2; Solds – 1
  • Reno/Sparks MLS.  New Listings – 72; Escrows – 108; Solds – 73

Inventory is shrinking a bit with some properties going off the market for winter.  For Tahoe Sierra MLS, 6 of the 15 solds were at last asking price….97% sell to list price overall.  Last week it was 90%, down from 95%.  Incline/Crystal Bay’s market has been pretty wimpy of late, but one property, originally listed at $11.5M last June, now at $9.5M, went into escrow.   For Reno, another nice listing at $5.4M since last June also went to escrow this week. 

  • Local/Real Estate/Luxe
  • Per Mansion Global/Redfin, US Home sales in 2023 set to slow to lowest level in a decade.  High interest rates, low inventory and inflation are keeping many owners in their current homes.  However, each area/community has its own personality, so what is true for one may not be true for another. 
  • Per Knight Frank’s current global house price index (56 countries and territories around the world), in spite of the world economic situation, for 48 of the 56 property prices are still rising at a rate of 8.8% a year.  Again, all relates to individual markets. 
  • “Effortless Ownership” is popping up in cities as well as resorts all over the world.  There is great appetite for lifestyle experiences with minimum maintenance and care.  Most major hotel chains as well as luxury brands are in the residence game in the form of condominiums and townhomes.  As a ‘for instance’, how about the Waldorf Astoria coming to Crystal Bay?  Chase International has the contract! 
  • Homewood Mountain Resort – Opening Day is December 16! 
  • Tahoe Fund’s Lake Tahoe Fun Facts:  Avalanche can reach speeds of 80mph in first 5 seconds. Humans trigger 90% of avalanche disasters with as any as 40 deaths in No. America each year.  Check out Sierra Avalanche Center before venturing out into back country.
  • Transamerica Pyramid, San Francisco, celebrates its 50th anniversary with plans to renovate the entire block – a $400M project that will add retail and public spaces plus an elite private club. 
  • NYC Penthouse atop the World’s Tallest Residential Building lists for a record-breaking $250M.  The 3-story condo with sweeping views of the city is priced at $15,000 per square foot.
  • For one economist’s view of the market in 2023, check this out: 
  • Latest You Tube on the Truckee market:
  • TidBits
  • Managing your weight around the holidays just requires a little planning.  For example, I took the batteries out of my scale.
  • Did you know that one in three men wait until Christmas Eve to do their shopping?
  • The Year Santa hired a consultant.  (see below)
  • Conversation with Clint:  Q: “How old are you?”  C: “I am just now 91.”  Q: “What are you going to do?” C: “I am going to start a new movie.”  Q: “What keeps you going?”  C: “I get up every day and don’t let the old man in.”  (He’s said this before but I still love it!) 
  • The bad news is time flies.  The good news is you’re the pilot.
  • Be decisive.  Right or wrong, make a decision.  The road is paved with flat squirrels who couldn’t make a decision.
  • So you drive across town to a gym to walk on a treadmill?
  • If you think you’re a person of some influence, try ordering somebody else’s dog around.
  • Bethlehem:  Three wise women would have asked directions, arrived on time, helped deliver the baby, brought practical gifts, cleaned the stable, made a casserole and there would be Peace on Earth!

Sending good thoughts for peace in your world as we move through holiday celebrations.  See you next time! 

Best wishes,