Portland OregonPortland Oregon Real EstateSelling Your home September 23, 2015

Timing is Everything

3 Graphs That Scream List Your House Today! | Simplifying The Market

Why you should LIST your House in the Fall!



Thinking about waiting till Spring to sell?  Capitalizing on the shortage of homes for sale in the market now, will translate into a better pricing situation than waiting until Spring.


In school we all learned the Theory of Supply and Demand. When the demand for an item is greater than the supply of that item, the price will rise.



The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently reported that the inventory of homes for sale stands at a 4.8-month supply. (it's more like 3 months in the Portland region)  This is significantly lower than the 6 months inventory necessary for a normal market.  We are currently experienceing a seller's market.

Inventory | Simplifying The Market


Every month NAR reports on the amount of buyers that are actually out in the market looking for homes, or foot traffic. As seen in the graph below, buyer demand this year has significantly surpassed the levels reached in 2014.

Foot Traffic | Simplifying The Market

Many buyers are being confronted with a very competitive market in which they must compete with other buyers for their dream home (if they even are able to find a home they wish to purchase).

Listing your house for sale now will allow you to capitalize on the shortage of homes for sale in the market, which will translate into a better pricing situation.


Many homeowners underestimate the amount of equity they currently have in their home. According to a recent Fannie Mae study, 37% of homeowners believe that they have more than 20% equity in their home. In reality 69% of homeowners actually do!

Equity | Simplifying The Market

Many homeowners who are undervaluing their home equity may feel trapped in their current home, which may be contributing to the lack of inventory in the market.

Bottom Line

If you are debating selling your home this year, let's get together to evaluate the equity you have in your home and the opportunities available in our market.  Buyers are lining up for homes in Portland.  

Cary Perkins,
Windermere Top Producer
Fun With Real Estate
Current Portland Oregon Real Estate Information,
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by Cary Perkins

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Current Portland Real Estate Market InformationPortland Oregon Real EstateWindermere Top Producer Cary Perkins February 16, 2015

Your nest and your nest egg

2015: A Year of Housing Opportunity | Keeping Current Matter



Many believed that when the housing market crashed, so too would the desire of American’s to own a home again. Many reports have shown that, especially among younger generations, the American Dream of homeownership is still very much alive. Julián Castro, Secretary for HUD, recently summed up what it means to own a home in a speech at the National Press Club.

"Homeownership is still the cornerstone of the American Dream — a fact you can see in the lives of everyday folks. It’s a source of pride. It’s a source of wealth, providing both a nest and a nest egg. And it strengthens communities and fuels growth in the overall economy."

Castro appropriately named his speech, “2015: A Year of Housing Opportunity”, a theme that rang true throughout.

“Opportunity is not an abstract concept – it's a path to a more prosperous life, and housing often serves as its foundation. T.S. Elliot once said that "home is where one starts from." “A home is often a primary source of wealth in a family… Having a home is generational way to pass that wealth on. We want people responsible enough to own a home to have that opportunity.”

Bottom Line

“Over the years-through decades of economic downturns and wars-the American people have always held on to this Dream, and always will.”

As the economy continues to improve, more and more Americans will qualify for homeownership, allowing more families to obtain the American Dream.




Cary Perkins,
Windermere Top Producer
Fun With Real Estate
Current Portland Oregon Real Estate Information,
Highlights of Portland Oregon, House Ideas
Portland Oregon Homes

by Cary Perkins

Portland Real Estate, Portland Oregon Top Producer, Windermere Top Producer, Portland Realtor, Portland Homes for Sale


Windermere Top Producer Cary Perkins


Current Portland Real Estate Market InformationMoving to PortlandPortland Oregon Real EstatePortland Real Estate DataPortland Real Estate Statistics March 18, 2014

Is there a new real estate bubble?



Portland is currently a very hot area for real estate. In fact, it is not unusual in several neighborhoods for there to be more than 5-10 or more offers for the same property, driving the price up 10% or more above asking price.

People have asked whether this is an indicator of another bubble waiting to explode all over the area’s real estate market. The last time home prices ticked up like this was just before the market correction.  So is this an inflated market or just the sign of a market continuing to find its new normal?


According to the Case Shiller Home Price Index released last month (February 25) showed that through the end of December, in the United States, home prices were up 11.3% overall which was the best year since 2005 according to the Chairman of the S&P Dow Jones Index Committee, David M. Blitzer. Some standout markets in 2013 included:

Several of those markets were hit very hard in the downturn and the numbers listed above reflect a rebound (such as Detroit, Las Vegas, Miami, Phoenix, and Tampa), but what about Atlanta, Los Angeles, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle?

Several of these markets are driven by pent-up demand and the loosening of credit. However, it is important to take a closer look at these markets, and any other market that is seeing high demand, to determine where the demand is coming from and if that demand is sustainable.

For example, in looking at Portland, there are several factors at work:

  • Migration to Oregon from other states is very high. In fact, Portland has one of the highest migration totals in the country in 2013.
  • Foreign and domestic investors are investing in the Portland housing market and the surrounding areas due to the potential for higher rents in these areas.

When demand occurs for more than one reason, it is a sign that a market is healthy, not spiraling out of control.

We must also take into account that credit is loosening up from recent years, but it is nowhere near as loose as it was in the years leading up to the market correction. New guidelines have been set in motion to prevent the kind of collapse we have had in the past. Credit score requirements are on the way down for loans. In fact, as reported by the LA Times last week, lenders are reducing the required credit scores for FHA loans and are allowing some with credit scores of 600 to receive mortgage funding. Lenders are also raising the debt-to-income ratio limit.

I don't believe this is a bubble. This is a direct result of pent-up demand from buyers who have been waiting almost three years to buy. Buyers who were getting ready to buy a year ago chose to wait because of issues the country was having with the debt ceiling and there was a lack of confidence in the market. Consumers are feeling more confident now and they show that confidence in buying real estate. In some markets there just isn’t enough inventory to go around. The increased consumer confidence along with the lack of new construction inventory has created a storm of demand. 

by Cary Perkins

Current Portland Real Estate Market InformationMovingPortland Oregon Real EstateSelling your home during the holidays November 19, 2013

Should I take my house off the market over the holidays?



This question comes up every year around this time.  Things are slowing down a bit, you're thinking about family and celebrations, and yet you want to get your house sold.

Many sellers feel that the spring is the best time to place their home on the market as buyer demand increases at that time of year. However, the fall and winter have their own advantages. Here are five reasons to sell now.

Only Serious Buyers Are Out

At this time of year, only those purchasers who are serious about buying a home will be in the marketplace. You and your family will not be bothered and inconvenienced by mere 'lookers'. The lookers are at the mall or shopping on NW 23rd!

There Is Far Less Competition

Housing supply always shrinks dramatically at this time of year. The choices for buyers will be limited. Don't wait until the spring when all the other potential sellers in your market will put their homes up for sale.

The Process Will Be Quicker

One of the biggest challenges of the 2013 housing market has been the length of time it takes from contract to closing. Banks have been inundated with both purchase and refinancing loan requests. Both of these will slow in the winter cutting timelines and the frustration these delays cause both buyers and sellers.

There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move-Up

If you are moving up to a larger, more expensive home, consider doing it now. Prices are projected to appreciate by over 25% from now to 2018. If you are moving to a higher priced home, it will wind-up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and mortgage payment) if you wait. You can also lock-in your 30 year housing expense with historically low interest rates right now. There is no guarantee rates will remain at these levels in years to come.

It's Time to Move On with Your Life

Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and decide whether it is worth waiting.  Is money more important than having the freedom to go on with your life the way you planned?  Will taking your house off the market now make this go any easier in the spring?

You already know the answers to the questions we just asked. You have the power to take back control of the situation by pricing your home to guarantee it sells before the end of the year .


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by Cary Perkins

Current Portland Real Estate Market InformationPortland Oregon Real EstatePortland Real Estate Data June 24, 2013

Until Mortgage Rates Reach 10.5%, Buying Will Still Be Cheaper Than Renting

The recent rise in mortgage rates has made buying a house a little more expensive: the increase in the 30-year fixed rate over the past month from 3.4% to 3.9% (Freddie Mac) raised the monthly payment on a $200,000 mortgage by $56, or 6%. However, because mortgage rates are still near long-term lows, and because prices fell so much after the housing bubble burst and remain low relative to rents even after recent price increases, buying is still much cheaper than renting. That means that the recent jump in rates doesn’t change the rent-versus-buy math much.

Rates are likely to keep rising, but how far must rates rise before buying a home starts to look expensive relative to renting? To answer this, we updated our Rent vs. Buy analysis with the latest asking prices and rents from March, April, and May 2013. Following our standard approach, we calculated the cost of buying and renting for identical sets of properties, including maintenance, insurance, taxes, closing costs, down payment, sales proceeds, and, of course, the monthly mortgage payment on a 30-year fixed-rate loan with 20% down and monthly rent. We assume people will stay in their homes for 7 years, deduct their mortgage interest and property tax payments at the 25% tax bracket, and get modest home price appreciation (see the detailed methodology and example here). Here’s what we found:

Buying remains cheaper than renting so long as mortgage rates are below 10.5%. At 3.9%, the current 30-year fixed rate according to Freddie Mac, buying is 41% cheaper than renting nationally. With a 5% mortgage rate, buying is still 34% cheaper than renting nationally. Mortgage rates would have to rise a huge amount – to 10.5% – to tip the math in favor of renting, which isn’t impossible. Rates were that high throughout the 1980s, but have been consistently below 10.5% since May 1990.

Each local market, of course, has its own mortgage rate “tipping point” when renting becomes cheaper than buying a home. At 3.9%, buying is cheaper than renting in all of the 100 largest metros, which means the tipping point is above 3.9% everywhere. The tipping point is lowest in San Jose, which would tip in favor of renting if rates reach 5.2%. It’s between 5% and 6% in San Francisco and Honolulu, and between 6% and 7% in New York and Orange County, CA.

Of course, the tipping point also depends on how long you plan to stay in your next home (we assume 7 years) and whether you itemize your deductions (we assume you do). For instance, if you don’t itemize, or if the mortgage interest and property tax deductions were eliminated entirely, buying would still be 29% cheaper than renting at a mortgage rate of 3.9%, and the tipping point when renting becomes cheaper than buying would be 7.5%.

But just because buying is cheaper than renting, it doesn’t mean you can buy. Lots of people who want to buy don’t have the downpayment or can’t get a mortgage. Even people who can swing it financially might not be able to buy right away, before rates rise further, because they might not find the home they want quickly with inventory still so tight.

So if the recent increase in mortgage rates doesn’t change the rent-versus-buy equation substantially, why does it matter? The main effect is to reduce the demand for refinancing. Unlike homebuying, refinancing is a relatively straightforward financial decision: although refinancing has upfront costs, refinancing doesn’t require finding a home, thinking hard about your lifestyle, or moving. Since rates have been low for so long, many people who were able to refinance, already have. As a result, the demand for refinancing is now dropping.

For people who haven’t yet refinanced – and for people looking to buy – rising rates do make housing more expensive. Rates are now on the rise and are likely to keep rising, thanks to the strengthening economy and the Fed eventually trying less hard to keep rates low. But it will take big rate increases to turn off prospective homebuyers. At today’s prices and rents, rates would have to rise to levels we haven’t seen in 20 years before renting is cheaper than buying a home on average across the country.


Read original article here.


Courtesy of Forbes and


















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cary perkinsCurrent Portland Real Estate Market InformationPortland Real Estate DataPortland Real Estate Statistics February 22, 2013

What’s Happening in Real Estate?


NOW is a wonderful time to sell your house! 





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Current Portland Real Estate Market InformationPortland Oregon Real EstatePortland Oregon RealtorSelling Your home January 19, 2013

Q & A – What if we don’t get any offers?







My clients are full of questions.  People I meet socially are full of real estate questions.  Everybody has a question about real estate.  Here's a good one with a simple answer.



Q:  Sometimes you have a fabulous house, priced where the market statistics tell you it should be, and there is a steady trickle of showings, but no offers.  If the neighborhood is good (location) and there's nothing left for the buyers to repair and the house is clean and show-ready, (conditon) is it the price? 


A:  There are basically three factors in the equation.  When two out of three can't or don't need to be changed, you have to look at the third. 


In this case it must be the price.  There is a simple 21 day formula for determining if a price reduction is in order.


1.  If there are showings and perhaps an offer that didn't come together, a 3% price reduction may be in order.

2.  If there are showings, but no offers, a 4% price reduction may be needed.

3.  Finally, if the property is not getting any showings or offers, a 5% reduction may put you in a position to get things moving, and offers coming in.


Obviously, depending on the price range, these percentages may differ, but this is a good rule of thumb.  Watch the number of showings, and after 2-3 weeks, you'll have your answer.


Contact me any time with your real estate questions!



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Current Portland Real Estate Market InformationPortland Oregon Real EstateReal Estate Tax January 7, 2013

What you shoud know about The Fiscal Cliff Bill as it pertains to Real Estate



All this talk of the Fiscal Cliff has finally subsided, but what does the bill do to your bottom line?  Here's how it pertains to Real Estate. 

The legislation was passed on January 1, 2013, and signed into law by President Obama on January 2, 2013. 


Real Estate Tax Extenders

  • Mortgage Cancellation Relief is extended for one year to Jan. 1, 2014 (for those who had to short sell their house – they won't have to pay tax on the forgiven debt)

  • Deduction for Mortgage Insurance Premiums (PMI) for filers making below $110,000 is extended through 2013 and made retroactive to cover 2012See this page for more info.

  • 15-year straight-line cost recovery for qualified leasehold improvements on commercial properties is extended through 2013 and made retroactive to cover 2012 (talk to your commercial broker for more info)

  • 10 percent tax credit (up to $500 maximum) for homeowners for energy improvements to existing homes is extended through 2013 and made retroactive to cover 2012

Permanent Repeal of Pease Limitations for 99% of Taxpayers

Under the agreement so called “Pease Limitations” that reduce the value of itemized deductions are permanently repealed for most taxpayers but will be reinstituted for high income filers.  These limitations will only apply to individuals earning more than $250,000 and joint filers earning above $300,000.  These thresholds have been increased and are indexed for inflation and will rise over time.  Under the formula, the amount of adjusted gross income above the threshold is multiplied by three percent.  That amount is then used to reduce the total value of the filer’s itemized deductions.  The total amount of reduction cannot exceed 80 percent of the filer’s itemized deductions.

These limits were first enacted in 1990 (named for the Ohio Congressman Don Pease who came up with the idea) and continued throughout the Clinton years.  They were gradually phased out as a result of the 2001 tax cuts and were completely eliminated in 2010-2012.  Had we gone over the fiscal cliff, Pease limitations would have been reinstituted on all filers starting at $174,450 of adjusted gross income. 

Capital Gains

Capital Gains rate stays at 15 percent for those in the top rate of $400,000 (individual) and $450,000 (joint) return.  After that, any gains above those amounts will be taxed at 20 percent.  The $250,000/$500,000 exclusion for sale of principal residence remains in place.

Estate Tax

The first $5 million dollars in individual estates and $10 million for family estates are now exempted from the estate tax.  After that the rate will be 40 percent, up from 35 percent.  The exemption amounts are indexed for inflation.

As always, I recommend you speak to your accountant or financial planner to see how these affect your bottom line.  Please call me if you'd like a recommended professional in these fields.


cute graphic courtesy of ABC news

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Current Portland Real Estate Market InformationMoving to PortlandPortland Real Estate DataPortland Real Estate Statistics October 12, 2012

Portland Real Estate continues to rebound



The rebound in the residential real estate market continued in September, according to new data from the Regional Multiple Listing Service.

In the Portland area, 1,894 homes sold in September, a 19 percent increase from September last year. The average sale price climbed nearly 5 percent to $281,400. Median price increased 3 percent to $238,300.

The average home spent 102 days on the market, a 22 percent decrease.

The only negative data point: The number of new listings (2,451) declined 2 percent compared with last year and nearly 21 percent compared with August.

As expected the market took an expected seasonal dip from August, which is one of the strongest months for home sales due to mild weather and school vacations.

Closed sales declined 18 percent from last month, when 2,311 homes sold.

There is now a 4.6-month inventory of homes on the market, down from a 6.7-month inventory last year. That means if no additional homes were put up for sale it would take 4.6 months for every house to be sold. A six-month inventory is considered healthy or a balanced market.



Source:  Portland Business Journal

cary perkinsCurrent Portland Real Estate Market InformationMoving to PortlandORPortland Oregon August 30, 2012

Sneak Preview of the New Eastside Streetcar

Portland’s newest streetcar line (and the first on the city’s eastside in more than 50 years) opens in less than a month on September 22, 2012. In anticipation of this substantial expansion to the existing streetcar network, Mayor Sam Adams, along with members of the Portland Streetcar board and Bureau of Transportation, rode on the first passenger-carrying train to traverse the new alignment earlier this month.

The eastside expansion will bring passengers over the Broadway Bridge from NW Lovejoy Street, connecting to the Lloyd District, the Oregon Convention Center, the Central Eastside’s Produce Row, and OMSI. When the new segment opens, streetcar service will be divided into two lines, which will overlap on 10th and 11th avenues in NW Portland and downtown. The opening of the eastside line will bring enhanced service to the most heavily used section of the Westside alignment (on 10th and 11th between Portland State University and the Pearl District). This section will see trains arriving every 7 minutes, down from the current 12-13 minute wait times. Trains on the eastside, NW 23rd, and the South Waterfront will arrive every 14 minutes. For a map of the new two-line system, click here.

To watch the video of the first ride, click here.