Tahoe Rental Connection shows pride with its building
Twenty-five years ago, a new structure on James Street near the Tahoe Keys received a nod as one of the best buildings in South Lake Tahoe.
Recent improvements, hard work and a facelift showed how much the title means to Dan Shideler, the current owner of Tahoe Rental Connection, Inc., a vacation rental business.
“We’re doing that extra step to keep Tahoe nice,” Shideler said on Monday.
Shideler invested approximately $23,000 into refreshing the building, including fresh coats of rustic brown paint, a new sign and landscaping.
He said the primary purpose for spritzing up his building is community pride.
“We want to show that locals are taking care of their places,” Shideler said.
Shideler purchased Tahoe Rental Connections 15 years ago and the building a year later. The business itself has been operating for 29 years.
He said the building’s condition reflects the business’ continued success over the years, especially through the recent recession.
“It’s a nice thing to know, especially when a lot people in Tahoe come and go,” Shideler said.
The building also houses an insurance brokerage and optometrist.
He said he purchased the building in good shape, but over the years, wear, tear and snow diminished some of its luster.
“It just needed some TLC,” Shideler said. “It looks nicer than it ever has.”
The sign itself was an example of creative ingenuity. Rather than shelling out $2,000 for the Tahoe Rental Connection commercial sign, Shideler went bargain shopping.
“I went to the baby department in Kmart and found the letters for $1.44 each, and spray painted them myself,” Shideler said. “Who would think to look in the baby department?”
The TRC logo, he said, lights up at night, forming a heart-shaped ring around it.
Heather Clelan, Tahoe Rental Connection’s office manager, noted the recent improvements showed the property investment had value.
“It’s a perfect example of a local commercial property in Tahoe that has everything from BMPs to cosmetically looking well,” Clelan said. “It’s all a huge package that has lasted a long time.”
On one the other side of the coin, areas like Ski Run Boulevard, Shideler said, with its improvement district, show the type of pride businesses and property owners put into buildings.
Gussying up parts of the town has been a goal by some, including U-Haul on Emerald Bay Road. The business recently announced it would undergo a facelift, including a new building, upgrading its sign to city specifications and improving its landscaping.
The Tahoe Valley Area Plan, recently approved by the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, proposes to spruce up the commercial and neighborhood area around “Y” at U.S. Highway 50 and State Route 89 on South Lake Tahoe’s west end.
Shideler said that, while a lot of businesses in South Lake Tahoe have recently attempted to keep up their buildings, more are simply renters who have no control.
“You see improvements over the years for sure because the city has encouraged it, but when you drive down the road, there are still a lot of rundown places,” Shideler said. “A lot of people who own their buildings have them managed and really don’t take pride in them.”
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