Portland Oregon Home Buying Guide

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Jolynne Ash, ABR CRS

Accredited Buyers Agent
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Portland Oregon House Prices

Typical Home Prices for Portland

Average Price Summary - 14 Year Appreciation Trend
Portland Suburbs' and Neighborhoods' Details

If you divide Portland Oregon into roughly four sections using Interstate 5 to divide East from West (see map link at left), and Hwy. 26 and I-84 to divide North from South, you would have an approximate layout of the greater Portland Oregon Metro Area. The Westside (includes NW and SW) is the area that we once called the suburbs or bedroom communities of the City of Portland. This is where you would find the largest concentration of Townhouses, Condos, and Patio Homes, in addition to single family homes. With the influx of high tech during the 80's and 90's, the area along Hwy 26 (Sunset Corridor) is referred to as the Silicon Forest. The demographics of the area are young and affluent. Most homes are less than 20 years old.

Our many planned communities are very attractive. The Eastside (NE and SE) of Portland contains our older neighborhoods built between 1910 and about 1950. Lots are on a traditional 50 by 100 grid pattern and small neighborhood shops and restaurants make this area very charming. Below is a list of the Average Sales Price of all Homes Sold year to date in the different cities comprising the Portland Metro Area. This is not intended to imply that all homes in a particular area are selling at this price point, but it does give you a general idea.

Average Sales Prices for Spring 2014


North Portland $268,000
NE Portland $327,000
SE Portland $292,000
Clackamas/Happy Valley 290,000
Gresham $233,000
SW Washington $206,000



West Linn/Lake Oswego $517,000
NW Portland $467,000
Beaverton/Aloha $265,000
Tigard/Tualatin $326,000
Wilsonville $330,000
Hillsboro $250,000

Want to learn more? Visit this site for a listing of all the cities and counties in Oregon.

Current Market Conditions

Portland’s real estate market continued to climb throughout 2013 with an overall average appreciation of 12.9% (RMLS Jan 1,2013-Dec 31, 2013). Beginning with the turnaround in early 2012. The average sales price increased by 6.3% in 2012 making it the first year with appreciation since 2007. The gains are continuing in 2014 but at a slower pace overall. We are still seeing multiple offers on many properties that are in the lower price brackets, but more stable inventories and 2-4 weeks of time on market for upper end homes. New construction is making a comeback with a number of very good builders creating beautiful homes from contemporary to the look of old Portland in the inner NE and SE neighborhoods. These homes can range from the 300's to the 700's depending on the size of lot, size of home, and neighborhood. The driving force of price escalations, multiple offers, and short time on market statistics continues to be the general lack of inventory and the larger than normal buyer pool. All those buyers that held off while the market was dropping waiting for the bottom, got back into buying mode over the past two years and they continue to show up in strong numbers as we move into 2014. Currently interest rates are staying in the 4.5%-4.8% range and have seen a few weeks where they dropped lower. Forecasts are for continued upward pressure on interest rates, reaching 5% by late in 2014. Of note is that some larger lenders are offering Jumbo loans (over $417,000) at rates lower than the more normally quoted conventional, conforming rates. This is a stark contrast to the typical increase of the rate for larger loans. We are told this is being driven by these large banks having record cash on-hand and needing to get rid of it. They are also looking at the relative risk and seeing purchasers with 20% down and buying in the $500,000 and above range, as being very stable and low risk borrowers.

If we follow the historical pattern, sales will be strong through October and soften in November, December and January. By February 1st we will be ramping up for the Spring selling season which is always the strongest. The number of people relocating to Portland from other parts of the Country (especially retired) is still growing which is a excellent sign. Our economy is getting stronger, ranked 3rd in the nation for job growth in 2013, and the future looks very bright.

When you search the MLS for homes you should keep in mind that most homes are now priced at market value and will often sell for more if there are multiple offers. Unlike California where a home would sell for $50k over asking, Oregonians retain a sense of reasonableness offering $10-$15k over. Some listing agents will purposely price a home below market to create a bidding 'war' thereby increasing the final sales price of the home. This is a valid strategy for Sellers to consider using, but can be frustrating for buyers trying to guess the price point. Trust your Buyer's Agent to guide you down this path. Generally speaking it takes $300k to buy a reasonably nice home in the Portland Metro Area (includes suburbs), and over $350k to get close in neighborhoods in Portland proper.

Below is a chart showing appreciation for the past 14 years.

Portland Metro Area Appreciation 14 Year Trend

Year Avg. Appreciation
-6.7 %
-2.7 %
-12.1 %

This site is full of useful information about Portland neighborhoods, including detail maps, utilities, and crime stats.
City of Portland Neighborhood Maps and stats

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Equal Housing Opportunity Logo Equal Housing Opportunity. Jolynne Ash, Principle Broker, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Northwest, licensed in the State of Oregon. All information provided is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed and should be independently verified. © 2013 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently operated subsidiary of HomeServices of America, Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate, and a franchisee of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® Services Provided by Jolynne Ash, Principle Broker, DreamStreet Team at Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Northwest, 5 Centerpointe Dr. Lake Oswego, OR 97035. 503-678-2020 All information provided is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed and should be independently verified. Copyright © 2001-'2015' Jolynne Ash PC. Buyers Agent. All Rights Reserved.