Real Estate Blog

Oregon was the top destination to move to in 2013. United Van Lines, the nation’s largest household moving company, released its 37th annual migration study to the Associated Press last month, which tracks the states that the company’s customers move to and from during the course of the year. Oregon has been the runner up for four straight years and has finally made it to the winner’s circle. According to the United Van Lines website, young professionals and retirees are drawn to the Pacific Northwest for its amenities such as public transportation, green space and the local arts and entertainment.

I would add that Portland’s affordability, at least by West Coast standards, and our beautiful summers and mild winters are also significant factors.

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2013 was a year of significant improvements for the Portland real estate market. The number of distressed sales, otherwise known as bank owned or short sales, has significantly dropped over the past year, resulting in fewer “underwater” homes being placed on the market. RMLS reported this month that distressed sales dropped from 28.6% to 15.1%.

Prices in 2013 were also significantly improved in the Portland Metro. RMLS reported a 12.8% increase in the median home price last year for the Portland area. Typically, as the market goes up, the number of distressed homes for sale goes down. This is good news for both sellers and buyers.

We at JMA are thrilled that the market is getting so much healthier. This improvement allows for buyer to search for

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The city of Portland has enjoyed a long list of kudos and awards for the many things that make this city a great place to live. Today we won another award, though the merits of this particular award may be controversial. We are ranked #1 among the Best US Cities For People 35 and Under.

This ranking was achieved variously by being in the Top 5 for such raucous categories as Most Coffee Shops Per Capita, Most Vintage Clothing Shops Per Capita, Cheapest Pack Of Cigarettes, and Cheapest Ounce Of High Quality Marijuana. Of which the latter two categories are most likely due to our lack of sales tax which makes us one of the cheapest places to buy almost anything in the United States.

http://www.vocativ.com/11-2013/livability/

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Since 2010, I have been selling manufactured homes along with real estate "stick built" homes.  In the beginning, I had many pre-conceived notions about manufactured homes, mostly ill conceived as it turns out.  I had the usual beliefs that the homes are not well built, that they are "plastic palaces", and that they do not appreciate in value as time goes on, making them a poor investment.  Those beliefs were challenged as I became involved in these homes.  I learned that they are well built, that they in many cases are just as gorgeous as any "stick built" home, and are in fact built to very strict building standards.

 

Since 1976, manufactured homes have been regulated to be built to HUD standards of building.  This means that they must meet all

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Cash is king or is it really? The majority of my buyers have been all cash lately. Do they really have the advantage over an offer that is financed?  Not necessarily. Many sellers have been more inclined to accept a higher offer that is financed over a lower offer that is all cash. Sellers now are deciding that it might be worth the risk in taking a higher financed offer because it comes to them all cash in the end anyways.. I know many cash buyers would tend to disagree with this, but I have found this to be true in many circumstances.

Buyers that are pre-approved with a lender prior to writing an offer have already gone through the hoops of what the under writers are needing to get final bank approval. Meaning they are already well qualified and

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Home sales in December were a percent lower than November, but still 13% higher than last December. Home sales were up 9% during 2012, the highest annual sales volume since 2007.

Prices increased 4.4% as the inventory of homes for sale continues to lag behind the increase in sales volume. New listings were 5.2% lower than last year while closed sales were up 19.1%. Total market time (average days on market) fell 21.5%.

Economics 101 at work, low supply and high demand equals higher prices. This trend is forecasted to continue in the short term until the supply increases to satisfy demand.

The National Association of Realtors has identified several reasons why the inventory remains low:

1. Many homeowners are underwater. According to CoreLogic,

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Rick Bean has been named a 2013 Five Star Real Estate Agent. He received the same award in 2012. This award recognizes a level of excellence achieved by fewer than 7 percent of the real estate agents in the local market.

The Five Star Professional award program is the largest and most widely published award program in North America. Award candidates are measured using an objective, in-depth research methodology that focuses on customer satisfaction and a thorough regulatory review.

 

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Have you noticed the increase in new construction starts? It's certainly a good sign. Increasingly, my clients are wanting to compare resale homes with new homes.  It was not even six months ago that I was showing buyers new homes and there was good inventory of completed homes.  With the increased demand , be prepared  look at a model home and choose a location that is in the framing stage. You could have a 4 month or longer wait to move in to your new home.   Wendy Culverwell wrote in the Business Journal:   New home sales account for about eight percent of the market, compared to five percent at the market low. New construction had claimed 16 percent of the market share in the mid-1980s and as much as 12 percent as recently as 2003, according to…
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        New construction has been down in the last couple of years, but recently there has been an increase in new home sales. This is great news for the home building industry in the Portland metro area. In previous years, new construction sales have been 5% of the market and in 2012 it has increased by 3%. According to the Regional Multiple Listing there have been 10,802 closed sales through June 2012. Another great indication of the increase of new home construction is the amount of permits that have been pulled. The Construction Monitor reports that there has been 2,426 permits pulled in the Portland Metro area which includes Salem, Vancouver and Portland. The amount of permits accounts to approximate $574.8 million total combined value. 
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Vancouver’s home resale inventories have decreased slightly. Distressed properties, such as foreclosures and short sales remained almost the same in September. The median listing price in Vancouver went up from August to September. There was a total of 90 price increases and 324 price decreases. Now is the time to buy. With the change of seasons upon us and school starting, sellers are anxious to sell before the cold winter weather hits us and would also like to be moved before the Holidays are here. So…if you have thought of buying, contact Sandy now for a list of properties. Also, this is a great time to sell! The off seasons bring out the serious buyers!
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