Incline Village at Lake Tahoe, Nevada Real Estate and Community News

Feb. 20, 2018


INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... Coming off their best year in a decade, Housing Starts surprisingly rose 9.7% in January, as home building heated up to a 1.326 million annual rate. The future looks good too, with Building Permits up to a 1.396 million annual rate.

Small wonder the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) found builder confidence in future sales expectations is now at a post-recession high. The NAHB Chair put this to "the pro-business political climate that will strengthen the housing market."

Finally, a recent study reports the median age at which consumers buy their first home is 29.1 years. Yet some three quarters of millennials are not currently homeowners. What an opportunity.

BUSINESS TIP OF THE WEEK... The goal is always to give clients an amazing experience. But make sure the prospects are worth that extra effort. If not, don't take them on.

>> Review of Last Week

REBOUND... After falling sharply the prior two weeks, the stock market rebounded last week, recovering about half its losses, and the three major indexes are again ahead for the year. It seems the big dip on Wall Street was just a correction.

That's not to say we won't have greater volatility this year than last, when stocks gained more than 20% while never posting even a 3% loss. This year, investors worry about inflation driving the Fed to more rate hikes, and last week saw a hotter than expected Consumer Price Index (CPI).

But the economy doesn't seem in danger of overheating. Its strength is growing, with corporate earnings up more than 15% and revenues up nearly 8% the past year, plus historically low unemployment. It's no surprise Michigan Consumer Sentiment hit 99.9, its second highest print in 14 years.

The week ended with the Dow UP 4.3%, to 25219; the S&P 500 also UP 4.3%, to 2732; and the Nasdaq UP 5.3%, to 7239.

In bonds, prices generally softened, as investors shifted money back into equities. The 30YR FNMA 4.0% bond we watch dipped .08, to $102.47. Freddie Mac's latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey reported national average 30-year fixed mortgage rates continue to climb, reaching the level they posted in April 2014. Remember, mortgage rates can be extremely volatile, so check with your mortgage professional for up-to-the-minute information.

DID YOU KNOW?... Mortgage rates are expected to rise, but the market can take it. A recent survey of home buyers by a real estate database reports only 6% of respondents said they would cancel their purchase plans if mortgage rates exceeded 5%.

>> This Week's Forecast

EXISTING HOME SALES STILL GROWING... Forecasters expect to see continued growth in Existing Home Sales in January, hitting an annual rate well above 5.5 million. Not much else gets reported during this four-day week, but we'll keep an eye on Unemployment Claims, predicted to remain historically low.

Posted in Real Estate News
Feb. 15, 2018


INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... The Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI) rose in January to a new all-time high. More people say that now is a good time to buy and a good time to sell, home prices should rise and mortgage rates fall, and job loss isn't a concern.

Supporting this, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) latest Housing Opportunities and Market Experience (HOME) survey reports 72% of respondents think now is a good time to buy and 71% think now is a good time to sell, "good news for possible inventory gains heading into 2018."

The NAR's chief economist feels, "housing demand in 2018 will be fueled by more Millennials finally deciding to marry and have kids, and the expectations that solid job growth and the strengthening economy will push incomes higher." Pretty good, that.

BUSINESS TIP OF THE WEEK... Business coaches advise that to get more done, you should design your day. Write down a schedule of what you'll do and when you'll do it. Then stick to it.

>> Review of Last Week

ROLLER COASTER DOWN... If you like wild rides, you would have loved the one investors took last week. The Dow fell steeply (1,000 points) on two different days, then climbed back up Tuesday and Friday, though not enough to keep the major indexes positive for the year.

We heard lots of yak that the stock drop was caused by fears of higher inflation and more short-term rate hikes from the Fed. OK. But those concerns come from the expectation of stronger economic growth, which ultimately is good for stocks.

Many experts called this a "correction" after stocks shot up 7.5% the first four weeks of 2018 following last year's 19.4% surge. They say there's little concern for housing or the economy, with more Americans working than ever, the highest inflation-adjusted wages and near historically low interest rates.

The week ended with the Dow down 5.2%, to 24191; the S&P 500 also down 5.2%, to 2620; and the Nasdaq down 5.1%, to 6874.

Bonds were kept in check by concerns over more federal spending. The 30YR FNMA 4.0% bond we watch fell .28, to $102.55. National average 30-year fixed mortgage rates hit their highest level since December 2016 in Freddie Mac's latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, but "initial readings indicate housing markets are sustaining their momentum so far." Remember, mortgage rates can be extremely volatile, so check with your mortgage professional for up-to-the-minute information.

DID YOU KNOW?... A recent poll says 9 out of 10 lenders expect to lend more in 2018 than in 2017. The Mortgage Bankers Association forecasts $1.18 trillion in purchase mortgages this year.

Posted in Real Estate News
Feb. 8, 2018



It’s an overcast January day and I’m driving through Crystal Bay, Nev., on my way to Diamond Peak. Looking up ahead, a white streak from the top of the mountain going down toward the lake is illuminated in a sliver of sunshine. It’s where I am headed.

Once at Diamond Peak, I park at the base lodge, grab a lift ticket, ride the Lodgepole lift so I can traverse over to the Crystal Express quad. I take that lift to the top. It is gradually getting colder, a winter wonderland with frost-tipped pine trees.

“It has one of the most spectacular views in the world and I’ve skied in New Zealand, Canada, South America and all over the United States. There’s no beating that view.”

–Carl Hill

There is more snow coverage than I expected. But, also, I’m hit with the magnificent beauty in front of me: a panoramic view of Lake Tahoe. The lake looks calm and changes shades of gray and blue as the clouds pass over. Diamond Peak staff recently built the Lakeview terrain park on the left side of upper Crystal Ridge and I watch a few skiers and snowboarders hit the rails and go over the wall ride with the vastness of the lake as their backdrop.

I stay on the right side, on the groomed part of the trail, the soft snow swishing under my snowboard. About halfway down, I look up again and see Snowflake Lodge perched on top of the Lakeview lift. Soon Crystal Ridge morphs into the Sunnyside run and I make even, wide turns feeling like I have the mountain to myself.

Even though I have been on this run hundreds of times, it never gets old. About one mile down the trail, I reach Crystal Express again and go back up. Coming off of the lift and strapping into my board, a couple stops to take a picture together at the top of Crystal Ridge. I can’t help myself and pull out my camera, too.

In his 26 years of teaching ski lessons, Diamond Peak Ski School director Carl Hill has taken thousands of skiers up to Diamond Peak’s Crystal Ridge and his students are consistently blown away by the views.

“It has one of the most spectacular views in the world and I’ve skied in New Zealand, Canada, South America and all over the United States. There’s no beating that view,” he says.

Breathtaking views await at Crystal Ridge. | Jen Schmidt, Diamond Peak To truly tackle Crystal Ridge, it helps to be a confident skier or snowboarder on intermediate/advanced terrain. For more advanced skiers, most of the black diamond runs are accessible from Crystal Ridge.

“I recommend that people immerse themselves in a lesson program to build their skills to the point of enabling them to ski at an advanced/intermediate level,” says Hill. “It all depends on the snow conditions, too. You want to go up there when it’s machine-groomed, packed powder.”

On those days that I’m stuck inside and can’t enjoy firsthand the views of Lake Tahoe from Crystal Ridge, fortunately the resort offers a live Web cam available on its Web site so that I can always see what is going. The 24-hour time lapse is also fun to play back to see the full operation from the groomers pushing snow at night to the skiers shedding it during the day.

“Watching the sunsets from the day before is one of my favorite things to do,” Diamond Peak marketing manager Paul Raymore says.

Posted in Community News
Feb. 5, 2018



Northern Nevada’s economy continues to climb, with big tech leading the way

In 2011, Nevada, like many states, was getting hit hard by the unrelenting jabs of the Great Recession.

The Silver State saw 175,000 of its jobs knocked out, had a wobbly unemployment rate of 14 percent and was tagged with an $800 million bill it owed the federal government in unemployment claims.

Six years later, Nevada has rallied back and then some.

From 2011 to 2017, Nevada has created more than 250,000 jobs and dropped its unemployment rate to a mere 4 percent. Moreover, the state has not only paid off its $800 million debt to the federal government, it now has a staggering $1 billion in the bank.

Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval relayed as much to a throng of 800 business members — who received those stats with raucous applause — during the ALLIANCE regional business expo, held Thursday, Jan. 25 at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino in Reno. ALLIANCE is a joint effort between the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada (EDAWN), the Reno-Sparks Chamber of Commerce and the Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority (RSCVA) to foster economic growth in Northern Nevada.

“Today, we’re No. 1 in the country in job growth,” Sandoval said in an interview with the media. “Seven years ago, we literally had to borrow money (from the federal government) in order to pay unemployment benefits. So not only did we pay that off, we have a billion dollars in the bank.

“And that really speaks to the business community — they’re the ones that pulled that increment.”

Indeed, the economic boom has been felt strongly throughout the state, especially in Northern Nevada.


A key player in the uptick is the tech industry, which has surged into the greater Reno area in the last five years. In fact, since 2012, 75 new advanced manufacturing companies have planted in the region, with Tesla making the biggest imprint — in more ways than one.

Located at the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center in Sparks, the Tesla Gigafactory 1, which has a current footprint of more than 1.9 million square feet, is projected to employ 6,500 people in 2018. At full capacity, Tesla is projected to employ as many as 10,000 people, said EDAWN President and CEO Mike Kazmierski.

“We worked really hard to bring advanced manufacturing in over the last six years and have been very successful,” Kazmierski said. “Manufacturing in the 21st century is about technology, software, robotics … all the things that will help us grow our tech sector going forward. That’s really our future.”

Kazmierski said that dovetails with EDAWN’s focus on bringing better jobs and higher wages to the region.

“We’re really shifting much more effectively to the technology sector,” he said. “And what’s happening in California and in the Bay Area, many of those companies have said ‘enough’ in California. And we want to be one of those options for them as they look to relocate.”


There is, however, a pivotal factor tied to Northern Nevada’s ability to keep the pace: affordable housing.

“It’s the only thing that keeps me up at night,” Kazmierski said. “If someone says, what’s going to slow things down? What’s going to stop us from reaching our potential? It’s affordable housing. Because we’ve been slow to build, we caused the housing prices to get too high.”

Sandoval and his constituents are well aware. He said the state has been working hard to approve industrial bonds, which allow for the construction of more affordable housing.

“But, it’s constantly a catch-up,” Sandoval continued. “The construction industry is a little gun-shy after the recession. And so we want to make sure that they feel comfortable in making those investments. But the state’s participating, the local government’s participating, and that’s been a No. 1 priority.”


In addition to attracting more companies, Northern Nevada has seen an influx in visitors and corporate travelers, especially in the Reno-Tahoe area.

“The regional economy is doing great right now,” said Phil DeLone, president and CEO of the RSCVA. “I think here in Northern Nevada a lot of that’s fueled by the four-to-five hundred companies that have moved into the region. That’s provided us a good base of inbound corporate travelers.”

What’s more, DeLone said the region is at “well over” 3 million cash-occupied room nights, and has seen a historic $347 million in taxable room revenue — in other words, revenue that the hotels and motels collect.

“Obviously, the hospitality industry is going to go in peaks and valleys,” DeLone said. “So we’re always making sure that we keep our eye on the ball and that our resorts are well taken care of.”

Keeping you in the know,

All my best....

Jeffrey Corman


Posted in Community News
Feb. 5, 2018


INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported Pending Home Sales rose in December for the third month in a row, ending 0.5% ahead of a year ago. This index of contracts signed on existing homes foretells sales gains a few months out.

The NAR's chief economist predicts existing home sales will hit 5.54 million units in 2018: "the larger paychecks most households will see from the tax cuts...and the healthy labor economy and job market will continue to boost demand." But tight inventories in many markets remain a concern

The Census Bureau reports homeownership in Q4 reached its highest level in three years. Zillow's Senior Economist feels "after bouncing around near 50-year lows for the past few years, the national homeownership rate finally seems to be gaining sustainable momentum."

BUSINESS TIP OF THE WEEK... Prospects care more about their needs than your qualifications. Get them talking about their hopes and dreams. Then say how you'll help achieve them.

>> Review of Last Week

GOOD NEWS IS BAD NEWS... The bad news was stocks tanked, but that was blamed on the good news of the January jobs report. A better-than-expected 200,000 jobs were added, and average hourly earnings (wages) are now up 2.9% year-over-year, the highest growth rate since 2009.

Unfortunately, this wage growth can also drive up inflation, which could encourage the Fed to do more than the two additional rate hikes expected this year. Who knows. Some felt the big stock selloff was just a normal correction in a market that's come a little too far a little too fast.

More evidence of a faster growing economy came with Personal Income AND Spending up nicely in December, with Core PCE Prices, the Fed's favorite inflation read, still a ways from their 2% target. And University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment on the economy remains high.

The week ended with the Dow down 4.1%, to 25521; the S&P 500 down 3.9%, to 2762; and the Nasdaq down 3.5%, to 7241.

Bonds headed south from the same inflation concerns that hurt stocks. The 30YR FNMA 4.0% bond we watch fell by .73, to $102.83. In Freddie Mac's latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, national average 30-year fixed mortgage rates edged up. Remember, mortgage rates can be extremely volatile, so check with your mortgage professional for up-to-the-minute information.

DID YOU KNOW?... A recent survey reports 67% of Americans expect their finances to improve in 2018. Millennials were the most optimistic demographic, with 79% seeing financial improvement.

Posted in Real Estate News
Feb. 2, 2018


Almost anywhere you drive in the Truckee Meadows, you can see apartment complexes rising from bare ground and cracked parking lots.

An estimated 3,762 units are currently under construction, while 6,209 units are in various stages of the planning process.

But it will still take years before new construction makes a dent in demand that has pushed the region's rents up faster than most areas in the nation.

"I think, definitely, we'll continue to see rents creeping up slowly," Sarah Fye, appraiser intern for Johnson Perkins Griffin Real Estate Appraisers & Consultants (JPG), told the Northern Nevada Business Weekly in a recent interview.

Fye was in the process of compiling JPG's fourth quarter 2017 apartment report. Final numbers were not yet available by this story's deadline, but she expected the report to be similar to the third quarter when rents had increased about 2.5 percent and the vacancy rate hung below 3 percent.

New apartment buildings have been opening in the market for a few years now, from completely new construction, to old hotels receiving new life as urban apartments.

However, rents continue to rise.

"Those properties haven't affected the market," Fye said. "Expect newer properties to continue to be absorbed. I don't think (construction) is happening fast enough to keep up with the job growth.

"We're just shy of 4,000 units under construction. We'll see them come online in two years, then it will start to help. It's going to take time. We're not going to see (relief) anytime soon."

The construction industry is also keeping a close eye on the tug-of-war between new construction and growing demand.

"Multifamily homes are going up like crazy," said Aaron West, CEO of Nevada Builders Alliance. "We are seeing significantly more multifamily construction: 2,700 units permitted this year (2017), compared to 1,700 to 1,800 last year (2016)."

Nevertheless, the demand for apartments has also increased as younger generations enter the housing market. Younger people often don't have the resources for a down payment, and even when they do, many prefer to rent, he said.

"Their lifestyle decisions are such that maybe they don't want to buy," West said. "They want to be flexible enough to travel or enjoy more entertainment."

With changing demographics as well as population growth increasing the demand for apartment units, some developers — who in the past have focused on single-family construction — are adding additional multifamily products to their development projects.

Reno Land Inc. is one of those companies. Among its projects currently under construction or planned, Summit Club off Mt. Rose Highway, has 584 units under construction with 20 percent set aside for workforce housing.

Meanwhile, the Park Lane project on the long-empty site of the demolished Park Lake Mall broke ground midyear 2017. It will include 1,619 apartment units along with retail, dining, open space and entertainment at the south end of Reno's Midtown. In Fernley, Reno Land is constructing a 200-unit multifamily complex.

Carson City is also seeing multifamily construction pick up. In recent months, approved projects include 105 townhouse units for the Mills Landing project off Highway 50 East; 147 townhouses for Arbor Villas off South Roop Street; Carson Hills Apartments, a 300-multifamily-unit project behind Casino Fandango; and the 150-unit Villas at Silver Oak project behind Glen Eagle's Restaurant & Lounge.

Further, there are rumors that Ryder is looking at taking on a 300-unit apartment complex in Carson City, West said.

Posted in Community News
Jan. 28, 2018


INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... Just like Housing Starts the prior week, New Home Sales closed out 2017 at their highest annual total in a decade, 14.1% ahead of a year ago. They were down 9.3% in December, but the post-hurricanes boost is over. Read more.

Existing Home Sales ended the year in even better shape, posting their best totals since 2006. They slipped 3.6% in December, but still finished 1.1% up from a year ago. Demand stays strong, but inventories are a concern in many markets.

The latest Mortgage Bankers Association Weekly Applications Survey reported the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index up 6%, to its highest level since April 2010.

BUSINESS TIP OF THE WEEK... Always follow up. Respond promptly to emails, voice mails and online comments from everyone--current, potential and past clients, your community and referral network.

>> Review of Last Week

WHAT? ANOTHER RECORD-BREAKING WEEK?... Yup! Investors pushed stocks to new record highs, as the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all bested 2% gains for the week, powered by companies' stronger-than-expected earnings reports, with 81% beating sales expectations!

The Q4 GDP-Advance estimate showed 2.6% economic growth, lower-than-expected, but a nice improvement over the 1.8% Q4 growth a year ago. Plus, consumer spending (about 70% of GDP) was up 3.8%, while business spending on equipment shot up 11.4%.

That investment in equipment was reflected in December's Durable Goods Orders, up an unexpected 2.9%, which economists said confirms an improving economy. Finally, both weekly initial jobless claims and continuing claims remain historically low.

The week ended with the Dow UP 2.1%, to 26617; the S&P 500 UP 2.2%, to 2873; and the Nasdaq UP 2.3%, to 7506.

Many bonds ended in negative territory, though the damage wasn't too bad to the 30YR FNMA 4.0% bond we watch, down just .02, to $103.56. Freddie Mac's latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey had national average 30-year fixed mortgage rates up for the third week in a row, but still below rates a year ago. Remember, mortgage rates can be extremely volatile, so check with your mortgage professional for up-to-the-minute information.

DID YOU KNOW?... Trulia's latest rental analysis says rents went up 3.1% overall in 2017, even as "the number of households renting has been declining while homeownership increased."

>> This Week's Forecast

EVERYTHING UP BUT THE FED RATE... No change is expected with the FOMC Rate Decision. The Pending Home Sales index of contracts signed on existing homes is forecast up, foretelling higher sales a few months out. Jobs are key to housing, so predicted gains in Nonfarm Payrolls and Hourly Earnings are welcome. The ISM Index and Chicago PMI may slip, but still show strong manufacturing growth.

Posted in Real Estate News
Jan. 19, 2018


Here are quarterly housing and rate charts. Please feel free to share. As always, I am here for you , don't hesitate to call or email.

30 Year FHLMC Rates On 30-Year Fixed-Rate Mortgage Chart


200 Year Historical Rates On 30-Year Fixed-Rate Mortgage Chart

Housing Prices Chart

S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices Chart

S&P/Case-Shiller (20 City) Home Price Indices Chart

Posted in Real Estate News
Jan. 17, 2018


Hi. With all of the talk of changes to Income Tax filing, I thought I would put together a synopsis of the changes. As always, please get the advice of a CPA, as I am "only" a Realtor.

Personal Filing Changes*

1st of all The Changes are Temporary

Many of the following changes in the tax code are Temporary and apply for tax years beginning before Jan 1, 2026. Whereas most of the business provisions are permanent


Personal Exemption Suspended

Personal exemptions from income were generally allowed for spouses and dependents, the amount for 2018 was going to be $4150. Under the new law there is no personal exemption.

State and Local Tax Deduction Limited (SALT)

The deduction for state and local taxes is now limited to $10,000 whereas before there was no limit aside from the AMT.

Mortgage interest

Can currently be deduction up to $1,000,000. The new tax law limits the deduction to $750,000. The mortgage deduction is based on acquisition indebtedness (Buy build or improve). The deduction applies to primary residences and as many 2nd homes as you want up to the $750,000 max aggregate.

Miscellaneous Deductions Gone

These were always subject to a floor which made the deduction useless for most people, however most CPA put down 2106 expenses for their clients even though they could not get a deduction which actually hurt mortgage applicants.

Expanded Use for 529 Accounts

Currently a 529 savings account could only be used for qualified higher education. The new definition now includes tuition at an elementary or secondary public, private or religious school.

Estate Tax

Essentially the estate/gift tax doubled from $5.6 for individuals to approximately $11.2 million for individuals and from $$11.2 million for married couples to approximately $22.4 million

Posted in Community News
Jan. 10, 2018



Year End | Lake Tahoe, Truckee, Reno & Surrounding Areas


Sierra Sotheby’s International Realty compiles quarterly micro market statistics from Reno, Truckee and Lake Tahoe's four different multiple listing services to help you better understand values, market trends, identify opportunities and make informed real estate decisions.

Follow the links below to review regional micro-market reports drilled down by neighborhood. If your community is not listed or you’re unsure what the data means for your situation, please don't hesitate to contact me.



Data is current as of January, 5, 2018. Information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.

Understanding Taxes in the New Year

Follow the link below for useful information to help you navigate tax changes in the new year. Please be sure to consult your tax advisor to better understand how these changes may affect your personal situation.


Posted in Market Updates