In the midst of a housing crisis, I thought we could use a couple of underdog success stories in the real estate world of Lake Tahoe and Truckee. First, allow me to introduce the heart-warming tale of my client-turned-friend, Becky.

Becky and I were introduced through a mutual friend in October 2016. Becky reached out via Facebook and expressed interest in purchasing a home in Truckee. She shared her story, once we had an opportunity to connect over the phone, and it deeply touched me.

Becky had been living in Chico for as long as she could remember, and spending every moment of free time up in the mountains. A couple of months ago, an internal switch occurred and she knew the time had come to officially call Truckee home. We scheduled an afternoon to view properties with the understanding she would need to sell her Chico property first, and this was just an initial “let’s see what’s on the market” tour. Well, we should have known better, because the moment we arrived at one particular house, we both knew our timeline was about to become much more accelerated.


This home was perfect for Becky’s active lifestyle with outdoor living, easy access to both skiing and mountain biking trails, and enough storage space for all of her toys to call home. We decided to make an offer knowing that it would be tied to the sale of her property in Chico, along with the traditional loan and appraisal contingency. For reference, having a home sale contingency is another type of contingency clause used in the purchase or sale of real property. The more common ones typically attached to most property purchase offers are physical inspection, appraisal, and loan. With a home sale contingency in place, the transaction is dependent upon the sale of the buyer’s home (in this case, Becky’s home in Chico). If the buyer’s house sells by the specified date, the contract moves forward; if it doesn’t, the contract is terminated.

The day we submitted an offer, the seller and listing agent (agent representing the seller alone) received an all-cash offer. With our loan, appraisal, and home sale contingency, how could we compete? I urged Becky to share her personal story in the form of a letter. What started as a quick write-up on a word document quickly evolved into a personal essay of what Truckee and this home personally meant to her. The seller, a full-time local resident, read Becky’s letter and immediately knew she wanted to give us a shot and decided to accept our offer, home sale contingency and all.

As with most transactions, we encountered a couple of speed bumps along the road, but we successfully navigated through each and every one of them. With all of the odds stacked against us, we were able to close in November. Becky is now living up here full time and within her first month has already joined many volunteer groups and is quickly becoming an active, positive member of this community.

Now, let’s direct our attention to a local couple who just recently closed on a property in Tahoe City. When these particular buyers reached out to me, they did so with an unrealistic hope that they would actually be able to purchase a home of their own.

The wife’s credit was less than stellar, but the couple was terrified they would be kicked out of their rental at any minute. I connected this couple with a local mortgage company, where they were able to complete a rapid rescore of her credit, which allowed them to qualify for a mortgage, and their offer was accepted on the first property we acted on.

With the local grant and down payment assistance programs, more and more locals are seeing an opportunity to achieve their dream of homeownership in the Truckee/Tahoe area.

It is possible, so if you’re wondering if you can afford to own here, please consider reaching out to a local agent or mortgage company. There are ways to turn your dream into a reality and we’re happy to help guide you along the way.


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