Inman Says House Buying Should Be as Quick as Ordering Latte
Award-winning journalist Brad Inman of Inman News spoke to Chase International real estate agents and staff at their biannual company meeting in Reno on the significance of transaction compression — simplifying and speeding up the buying process in today’s on-demand world.
Inman stressed the importance of taking advantage of technology, while maintaining the human touch necessary to such high-dollar purchases, to the 300 Realtors in attendance.
“You should be able to buy a house as quickly as you order a latte,” he said. “This concept is not going to take your business away.”
From “techno flippers,” who provide sellers with a certain quick sale, to authenticating buyers in a flash, new standards for compressing transactions are rapidly establishing in the real estate industry, he said, while cautioning agents to at the same time hone their human skills of empathy and honesty.
Out with the Old, In with the New
TRUCKEE / TAHOE
Nearly every metric within the Tahoe/Truckee region shows a bias toward newer subdivisions with amenities at the sacrifice of older, more traditional mountain properties, says Jeff Brown of Tahoe Mountain Realty. Correspondingly, as new projects release plans, demand is such that pre-sale campaigns have once again emerged as a viable strategy. Brown points to Northstar as a prime example — saying that the resort had “gone a generation without any significant development” when the village was renovated and luxury offerings were developed. “Ultimately, Northstar rose from a sleepy, 1970’s style ski community to a destination worthy of Ritz Carlton branding.” New development at Northstar sold for an average of 237 percent higher than standing inventory over a 12-year period. Brown also points out that as consumer tastes have evolved, heavy mountain finishes have given way to bright and clean modern elements.
New Face at Helm of Placer County Tahoe Planning Offices
Due to the recent departure of Shawna Brekke-Reed as the Placer County Community Development Resource Agency manager in Tahoe, longtime county employee Rick Eiri has volunteered to serve as CDRA Tahoe office’s interim assistant director until a more permanent solution is reached. Eiri is a licensed civil engineer and has been with Placer County more than 22 years, working mostly on land development projects, but also spent a few of those years working on county projects such as roads, bridges, and erosion control improvements. Prior to Eiri’s employment with Placer County, he worked at private consulting firms in both the Sacramento and Tahoe areas. Info: Eiri’s office, (530) 745-7519
Town Talks Housing Crisis
On Jan. 31, the Town Council hosted the first of at least three workshops geared toward finding steps the town can take to help alleviate the current housing crisis in the Truckee/Tahoe region. The workshop focused primarily on building a common understanding of the issue for both decision makers and community members and obtaining public feedback. Future workshops will hone in on the most promising action steps and result in an array of recommendations for council consideration. The council approved $50,000 in annual funding for three years to go toward a regional housing fund, subject to Placer County doing the same.
Luxury Home Sales Shot Up 50 Percent
TAHOE / TRUCKEE
Luxury home sales in the North Lake Tahoe and Truckee areas experienced strong gains in 2016, shooting up nearly 50 percent compared to a year earlier, according to Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. A total of 280 single-family homes and condominiums priced $1 million and higher were sold in 2016, up from 187 unit sales in 2015. Single-family properties in the $1 million to $2,499,999 price range experienced the biggest increase. Sales in that bracket jumped 63 percent to 168 transactions recorded in 2016 compared to 103 in 2015.
TOT Compliance Efforts Stepped Up
In an effort to ensure compliance with its transient occupancy tax (TOT) ordinance, the county has launched two concurrent efforts: In October, the county contracted with Host Compliance to assist with its effort in identifying, in real-time, internet-based rental companies operating out of compliance in the unincorporated areas of Placer County; and last June, the county also initiated contact with MuniServices to assist with conducting more frequent inspections of records, ensuring lodging providers are complying with the requirements.
“I’m encouraged to see the county stepping up its efforts to work with our hotel and rental property community to help ensure everyone is following the rules,” Jerry Gamez, Placer County Administrative Services Director, said. “TOT is an important source of funding to balance the costs and benefits of tourism and is essential to the preservation of our community and quality of life.”
Registered lodging operators will receive letters in the coming weeks alerting them of these new initiatives, with several to be selected for a review of their TOT collection records. Property managers will be asked to provide a list of their properties being leased as short-term or vacation rentals for a possible future compliance review.