Lake Tahoe Truckee 2020 Market Report

A January 2021 Forbes article shows the following headline: Tahoe’s Housing Market Expected To Remain Hot Following 2.7 Billion Year. Like most resort markets across the US, Lake Tahoe has been in the headlines of many newspapers because of strong 2020 sales activity.

At the beginning of the pandemic in April 2020, there was a lot of uncertainty about the effect it would have on local real estate sales. By May, remote working opportunities brought an influx of buyers to Lake Tahoe in search of a better environment to ‘shelter in place.’

Inventory was at normal levels at the beginning of January 2020, but by summer, the demand overwhelmed the supply. The days on market for any listing was reduced to 30 days and sometimes less, as more cash buyers entered the sales frenzy. Multiple offers became the norm and we finished the year with less than a month's supply of inventory.

Even lakefront activity saw an increase in median prices, although the number of lakefronts sold wasn’t the highest, it was 131% higher than 2019. Luxury properties continued to sell on the upward trend experienced in 2019, and almost 15% of homes sold in Truckee and North Lake Tahoe were over $2 million.

The only down side of this real estate frenzy is that many Tahoe locals who have been renting, are now priced out of the market. Areas such as Donner Summit and Sierra County are beginning to experiencing the overflow of buyers who can no longer afford a home at Lake Tahoe.

Beginning the year with such a reduction in inventory will definitely drive prices even higher. We may even see speculative activity because home values are increasing so quickly. If you have ever considered putting your home on the market, this may be the time to get the best return on your investment. People who bought only 2 and 3 years ago will still see higher equities than they had imagined.

Interest rates too, have held steady, which is another driving factor. The consensus is that the lack of supply will make 2021 another year of multiple offers and rising prices.

2020 Lake Tahoe Truckee Market Report

Lake Tahoe and Truckee Combined

Compared to 2019, the amount of single family residences sold was 33% higher. The average sold price increased 14% and it was the first time the region showed sales volume numbers over the 2 billion mark. There were 2350 transactions, which was 33% higher than the 1763 homes sold in 2019.


Truckee had an epic year too, with a 52% increase in number of homes sold in 2020 over 2019. The average sale price was similar to other areas, at 15% higher than 2019. The majority of sales were in the $500K to $900K range with 242 homes sold. 134 homes sold over $2 million with 5 sales between $8 -10 million, and 3 over $10 million.

North and West Shore

For the North and West Shore of Lake Tahoe, the number of single family residences sold showed an increase of 60% over 2019. The average sale price increased 13% and 12% of sales were over 2 million. A total of 492 single family residences sold in these areas.


When looking just at the lakefront market, the median price rose 32%, but the number of sold lakefronts showed a whopping 129% increase over sales in 2019. Since the entry level price for a lakefront is now at $5 million, 100% of lakefront homes sold were over $2 million

Coming Correction?

Whenever a market experiences this type of sales activity and frenzy, affordability is the next factor that settles in to adjust the market. This means that although prices are trending upward, there is a sweet spot where the home value will not match to the number of people who can afford to buy. This can lead to a correction while prices adjust downward.

If you have been thinking of listing your property for sale at Lake Tahoe and Truckee, this might be the best possible time. We’ve seen market re-adjustments in 1999 and 2008 and we never know which factors are going to impact the market.

Contact me today for a free property analysis or for a list of available homes. In this market, it is important to work with an agent who is an expert negotiator and with excellent follow up skills. I look forward to helping you make your dream of owning at Lake Tahoe a reality.