Tahoe real estate veteran branches out on her own
March 26, 2006
Terry Laymance has spent more than 20 years helping clients pursue their dream of owning a piece of the Lake Tahoe life. Now it’s her turn.
She opened All About Tahoe Realty at Roundhill Square in January with that in mind. She left the security of Aspen Realty, a firm where she had worked over the last 20 years, to put out her own shingle.
She’s thought about breaking out on her own for 10 years.
Everyone she knows, including her boyfriend, has been supportive.
“This is a big step,” she said, overlooking the office she decorated. Photographs by Justin Baer dominate the light-pine walls, and Barbra Streisand tunes add to the ambiance.
As an agent since 1979, Laymance has seen the real estate industry and market evolve. She has noticed the influx of agents over the last few years, but she contends many must realize the “glamorous” world of real estate takes a lot of hard work.
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“It’s a tough living. I work seven days a week. I may work two to three weeks straight then take a few days off, and I don’t feel guilty about it,” she said. “You have to be self motivated. As a real estate agent, you’re classified as an independent contractor anyway. Anybody can pass a real estate exam. But it doesn’t give you the tools it takes to be successful in this business.”
Run the business, and the responsibility increases. Laymance employs two staffers and wants to add more people when the business grows.
The disappointments may come if the expectations of payoff don’t come early enough. It takes a commitment to build a business over time in Tahoe.
“It took me three years to make what I made in San Francisco,” she said. She worked in the Bay Area city for the school district but moved to make that quality of life leap to the mountains.
“I could breathe,” she said.
Laymance said she juggles about 250 clients, many of whom come from outside the area. That’s one reason she plans to expand her Internet business.
Like many people, the licensed broker on both sides of the state line has witnessed a shift in the home buyer away from permanent residents who often make less than other buyers.
“I see not as much as I’d like to and not as much as I did 10 to 15 years ago,” she said of the local market. “It’s a new day and age. Prices have gone up, but they have everywhere.”
As of March 8, the median price for a single family home listed in South Lake Tahoe was $549,450. Last year, the median of the homes sold came in at $475,000, up 26 percent from the prior year. Either way, the double-digit increases have priced out some local residents.
Something for locals to take to heart – instead of seeking an upgrade, Laymance has stayed in the same home off Tahoe Island Drive since moving to the South Shore.
“I walk in after 20 years and still love it,” she said, adding the house has since been remodeled.
Her goal is sharing that “emotional” feeling about a home that she has.
All About Tahoe Realty
Terry Laymance of All About Tahoe Realty, which is located in the Tahoe Douglas Chamber of Commerce building above the visitor center, can be reached at (775) 588-8090.