Utah Ski Industry Acquisitions, Alliances Should Affect Property Sales

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THE NEWS The summer real estate sales season, traditionally the strongest sales period of each year, is about to get underway at Utah Resorts and surrounding markets. This will be the first summer season following the dramatic ski industry acquisitions and new alignments affecting the Park City/Deer Valley and Canyons resorts.  

There is much anticipation, and more than a little speculation, about what effect the new landscape of the ski industry in Utah will have on property sales.  Here’s a quick recap.

Vail bought Canyons and Park City Resort, and plans to connect the two with a lift for the 2015/2016 season.  They also plan significant additional development at and around the base village of Park City.  Folks with the Epic pass in Colorado, Utah, etc., will now have access to both Utah resorts, as well as all the Colorado, California, and European resorts on the pass.  Deer Valley purchased Solitude, and the individual entity that previously owned Park City and lost it to Vail purchased a majority ownership in Snowbird.  Deer Valley and Park City have announced they are considering a lift that would connect the resorts in the town of Park City.

So how will this flurry of acquisitions and alliances affect the real estate market in these and possibly other Utah ski areas?  Excellent question.  And, again, the subject of much speculation.  Epic Pass season ticket holders outside of Utah through Vail Resorts will have access to Park City and The Canyons, and Epic Pass holders in Utah will have access to the numerous resorts that are a part of the Epic Pass.  This will undoubtedly be an incentive for property ownership in the Park City/Deer Valley and Canyons area, and result in a population (or at least property ownership) increase.  On the other hand, some long-time residents of the Park City area might want to escape the increased crowds and traffic and move on to a more serene, hassle-free environment.  Perhaps the Ogden Valley?  With superb, un-crowded skiing at Snowbasin and Powder Mountain, stunning scenery, little traffic and low prices (price per sq. ft. 50% of what it is in much of the Park City area) – the Ogden Valley might indeed attract some to the great deals on quality properties and the “Valley Lifestyle.”

The Canyons acquisition of Solitude could have an impact on property sales in Little Cottonwood Canyon and the Salt Lake City bench, depending on changes at the resort.

Real estate sales and prices are already robust in the Park City/Deer Valley and Canyons areas heading into the summer selling season.  It could turn out to be a very good summer for sellers and buyers with all the new, additional amenities that Utah’s resorts now have to offer.