***SPOILER ALERT*** I’m not an economist, or statistician. I’m a Portland area mortgage lender, and Portland area home owner, as well as a Portland area landlord. So I feel I’m writing this as an interested bystander with a ring side view of the action. My team and I participate in anywhere from 5-15 purchase transactions per month as of late, so I certainly have some high level anecdotal information to bring to bear here.
Let me start by saying this about the spring 2014 real estate market – HOLY SH**! What is happening out there you guys?! All the good properties are getting snapped up in a matter of hours it seems, double digit multiple offers, buyers offering $10-20k above asking to be told they aren’t even CLOSE. Agents are knocking on doors to see if they can find some off-market opportunities for their clients etc. I had an agent share with me that the Kenton neighborhood in North Portland averaged 104% of list price for the month of April- meaning if you offered 4% above asking you were simply AVERAGE!
Mortgage rates continue to hold steady in the low 4% territory which allows prices to surge unabated. Can this go on? Didn’t Portland just experience a 12% property increase for 2013? And why do I continue to hear about “housing slow down concerns” on CNBC? I’m baffled.
But then I take a step back and try to see the larger story.
How does Portland fit into the greater “west coast story”? It seems like of all the major markets in the west coast, Portland has the most “insurgent” energy around start up tech, start up restaurants, and families coming here from all over to be a part of this highly conscious culture that we have here.
We’re significantly more affordable than San Francisco, Seattle, Southern California, and arguably we have just as much to offer if not more than those places.
Folks born in the 1980’s are called “millennials”, they are all educated now and employed and making good money. They have been living in New York, and San Francisco, Seattle etc and they have a unique value system. These are the new first time buyers and they want IN on Portland. We deliver the goods to this cohort of buyers in a way that no other city can even come close to.
And think about how the nature of employment is changing right now as well. Many people can do their jobs from anywhere now which frees them up to choose where to live and where to identify themselves. What other part of the country is offering as much as Portland Oregon in this area? Raise your family in relative safety among a highly educated and conscious community….
What am I saying?
I guess I’m saying that Portland is just getting started. I sense other cities trying to catch up with what we’re doing but if you want the real thing, you got to come here and get it! I’m bullish on the future of the Portland real estate market personally. Even though it seems like you have to overpay for something today to get what you want, I predict that in 5+ years, that purchase will be one of the smartest things you ever did.
Come and get some!