Buying South Lake Tahoe Real Estate? Get Pre-Approved First

The big new in South Lake Tahoe real estate right now is the low inventory, increased home prices and buyers trying to find a home for sale in South Lake Tahoe. This is an issue across the nation right now, with the national month supply sitting at a 4.2. In order for the market to be considered “balanced”, there needs to be a 6 month supply. South Lake Tahoe real estate is currently less than the national average at 3.4. Currently, the only neighborhood on the California side that is close to a buyers market is Tahoe Keys. However, they have the highest median and average home sales price between $600,000 and over $700,000. If you were already feeling the pressure as a buyer, this information may be slightly frustrating. As a realtor in South Lake Tahoe, I personally feel that being informed about market conditions actually benefits you, regardless of whether you are buying or selling. In fact, this type of information can get you prepared and ensure that you take the proper steps BEFORE you even start touring homes. 

The most important step you can possibly make, aside from selecting a qualified realtor in South Lake Tahoe, is getting pre-approved. This shows sellers that you are serious about purchasing their home for sale in South Lake Tahoe. When you get pre-approved, you have already handed over your financials, completed all the paperwork and have an approved loan for a certain amount of money. This not only saves you time by knowing exactly how much you can spend, BUT, it also lets the seller know that your financing is lined up and you aren’t just window shopping. It also gives you the confidence to move quickly in a competitive market, which the South Lake Tahoe real estate market is. 

More benefits to getting pre-approved? You are locking in an interest rate, which means you are locking in your housing costs. Unlike renting, your monthly payments stay the same. Which allow you to budget accordingly. Your offer on a home for sale in South Lake Tahoe has a higher chance of getting picked as well. If it comes down to a pre-approved buyer and an buyer that is just pre-qualified (which is essentially a guesstimate), they are going to pick the one that has the financing lined up. Being pre-approved also speeds up the process once your offer on real estate in South Lake Tahoe has been accepted. 



If you are serious about making an offer, be sure to get pre-approved and be sure to have a qualified South Lake Tahoe realtor represent you. For more information, give me a call. I would be happy to help! 

South Lake Tahoe Real Estate: Selling DONT’S

Just last month I did a blog on what not do as a buyer. So it seemed appropriate to discuss what not to do as a seller of South Lake Tahoe real estate. After all, we are in a seller’s market so how you approach the process can determine the type of success you have in the sale of your South Lake Tahoe real estate. If you want to avoid having your home sit on the market, check out these tips on how to avoid common selling mistakes! 

Tip No. 1: Don’t overprice your home for sale in South Lake Tahoe

Listen, as a realtor in South Lake Tahoe, our goal is to get you the most money possible in the shortest amount of time. Unfortunately, so many homeowners overestimate their homes value. Whether Zillow was a little overzealous with that zestimate or you made a lot of upgrades over the years, you need to hold tight before getting too attached to a certain number that can’t be backed up by comps (also known as comparable sales). Just because your neighbors house sold for your dream number, doesn’t mean yours will. They could have a better view, more square feet, it could be brand new construction or it could have had extensive upgrades whereas yours didn’t. Usually the sales price is determined based on comparable homes that have sold in the last 6-12 months. These are homes that are actually similar to yours in size, beds, baths and features. Take your South Lake Tahoe realtor’s advice when it comes to pricing. It may not be the number you had in mind, but if it is based on current market conditions, you should have no issues with it moving quickly and potentially with multiple offers. 

Tip No. 2: Be flexible with pricing

The South Lake Tahoe real estate market is a changing industry. Pricing and mortgage rates can change and can be hard to predict too far out. So even if you priced correctly for the market conditions at the time of listing, you still need to stay flexible and roll with the changes. If an offer comes in lower then what you would like, countering is an option. 

Tip No. 3: Keep your home in showing condition

It is hard, we know. Selling real estate in South Lake Tahoe does require some effort which can feel overwhelming with work and all of your other commitments. However, housekeeping can not go to the wayside when your home is on the market. Every person that walks through is seeing your home for the first time so keeping it clean and de-cluttered is crucial for a good first impression. If that feels like a huge undertaking to you, try these tips.

  • Go through your home’s closets, garage and storage areas and either toss, donate or keep.
  • For the keep pile, figure out what doesn’t need to be used for a month or two and pack up. This saves you time later on. 
  • Create a throw all bin for each room that can be easily stored in a closet for a last second showing. You may not have time to deep clean, but you can at least toss stuff in one spot and then put it away. 

Tip No. 4: Don’t Leave religious or political belongings in plain sight

Part of de-cluttering & cleaning is de-personalizing your home. Buyers want to imagine their stuff in your space without your stuff getting in the way. As a South Lake Tahoe realtor, I always recommend keeping it neutral, whether it is a wall color or political or religious symbols. 

Tip No. 5: Use professional photographs

Unless photography is a hobby or second skill, allow your Realtor to spend the money on a pro. These photos will be used online, in postcards, email marketing, flyers and more. With a majority of buyers looking on the internet for South Lake Tahoe real estate, having great photos is the difference between getting a tour and well….not. 

Tip No. 6: Don’t stick around at your own open house

Buyers don’t like to feel rushed or uncomfortable when touring their next potential home. When the seller is lurking nearby, they usually feel like they can’t ask the South Lake Tahoe realtor questions about the property (and get an honest answer) or look in closets. In fact, most feel a little bit like they are intruding. This results in them being out the door and on to the next house quickly. 

Tip No. 7: Don’t be difficult with showings

When selling real estate in South Lake Tahoe, it will feel like your home is not really yours. You have to stay flexible and make it easy to show. If there are certain hours that don’t work for you, your realtor in South Lake Tahoe can specify that in the showing instructions. 

Tip No. 8: Don’t leave pets at home during showings

Whether a buyer is scared of pets or allergic, don’t turn away someone by letting your sweet family member roam free. If removing them from a home is not possible, consider a crate or putting them outside and leaving very specific instructions on where the pet will be. 

For more information on listing your home for sale in South Lake Tahoe, feel free to give me a call. I would be happy to help!