Thursday, May 19, 2016

What's next Portland?

Lots of news and chatter and scuttlebutt these days about tear downs, and stopping the demolition and developers and the like.  And yes, there are a lot of tear downs and demolitions and developments.

If you've not yet found it, nextportland is a website, facebook page and blog devoted to reporting on architecture and development in Portland.  They've got a great interactive map on their website with which one can get information about projects in various stages.

Sorry I'm not fancy enough to embed the interactive map here.  But click the link above and it'll take you there.  The different icons denote projects in permit review, early assistance, completed projects, announced projects, those in design and land use review, and inactive projects.

I hope you find this information helpful and interesting.  Let me know if you have any questions!

Friday, May 13, 2016

The Most Recent Market Stats are out!

RMLS just released the most recent stats about the Portland area real estate market.  As we've been feeling in our office, things are easing a bit.  Thank goodness!

Our market has been plagued by low inventory, with not enough houses on the market to meet demand.  As often is the case, this demand has been helping to drive prices up.  Not that a ton of houses have flooded the market, but inventory in April increased from 1.3 months to 1.4 months. When the May numbers come out, I predict we'll see a further increase in inventory.

We have clearly been in a seller's market.  A  balanced market, where neither buyers nor sellers are seen as having more power or advantage, is thought to be five or six months of inventory.

Speaking of those prices...Our year to date median sales price is now at $329,000, up 13.4% from the year to date median price in 2015 of $290,000.

The other indicator I like to watch is the total market time in our area.  The total market time for houses that went under contract in April was 43 days.  This compares to 61 days from April 2015.  Market times in North, Northeast and Southeast Portland for April 2016 were 25, 29 and 29 days respectively. Isolated to the neighborhoods inside Interstate 205, I'm sure we'd see even shorter market times.

It would be great to see a bit more easing, whereby we'd see more buyers getting their offers accepted.

Read the full Portland area report.

Get in touch with me if you have questions about the Portland real estate market, or want to talk about buying or selling.  503-312-8038

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Development costs and affordable housing?

It seems general sentiments in Portland are that residential real estate developers are a part of the affordable housing problem.  That is, the large expensive houses and small expensive apartments being built around town are driving home prices and rents up, beyond what low and median income buyers and renters can pay.

Nationally though, there is talk that the costs and delays associated with getting a piece of land to a build-able state are an oft cited reason for the increasing costs of housing.  That is to say, if development costs and processes are easier and cheaper, housing would be cheaper.  A Business Insider article by Bob Bryan addresses this.

A recent study from the University of Pennsylvania placed each state on a spectrum called the Wharton Residential Land Use regulatory Index (whew, say that five times fast).   States with less restrictive housing market regulations had lower WRLURI values.  As one might imagine, states seen as more environmentally aware and concerned had higher WRLURI values than states seemingly more sympathetic to business interests.  Check out the map at the bottom of the above linked article.  Oregon is classified as having above average land development restrictions.  I'm guessing the City of Portland would be classified in the "most restrictive" category.

Do you think that follows locally, in Portland?  Do you equate policies that are pro-developer with lower housing costs?