Portland Real Estate Blog

This is a top 100 real estate blog in the world according to Feedspot.com. In particular this is a Portland real estate blog written by a top 1% Portland real estate agent, Stephen FitzMaurice, Realtor. Stephen regularly reports on the Portland real estate market, including short sale and foreclosure news. He gives home selling and home buying tips. He also writes informative articles on Portland neighborhoods. Finally, he writes to inform the general public about real estate agents and the industry.

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portland real estate mold home test

How to Test Your Portland Home for Mold: 2020 Update

July 13, 2020

Portland homeowners: Is your home harboring mold?  That was a trick question because mold occurs just about everywhere on the planet, including homes in Portland, Oregon. Invisible, or “ambient” mold spores float on the air waiting for an appropriate place to land and form the green, black and blue colonies we’re all familiar with.  The real question is, not whether there’s mold in your house, but if you have a mold growth problem. If you do, there’s probably an underlying issue that should be addressed. But what about toxic black mold? Thankfully, this strain of mold is not very common, and is rarely found in Portland homes. According to the CDC, “All molds should be treated the same with respect...


portland real estate foreclosure rate

Portland Real Estate Foreclosure Rate – 2020 Report

July 10, 2020

Over the past five years, the foreclosure rate in the Portland real estate market has been dropping, from close to 4% of total sales in 2015 to just under 1% this year. Even though the total number of foreclosures in Portland has gone down, we’re not back to zero foreclosures, which was the case prior to 2008. Last year, homebuyers successfully closed on just over 100 foreclosure deals (according to RMLS, our local MLS system) and 47 foreclosures have closed already in 2020. But the COVID-19 pandemic prompted lawmakers this spring to prohibit banks from pursuing new foreclosures until at least October. What will this mean for the Portland real estate foreclosure market? We can take a look back to...


portland real estate condo market

Portland Condo Buyers’ Guide 2020

July 6, 2020

Summer 2020 Portland real estate market provides an excellent opportunity to invest in a condo in Portland. We’re seeing a decrease in buyer activity and falling prices in response to COVID-19. Whether you’re a first-time buyer, a homeowner looking to downsize or in search of your perfect second home, here’s our definitive Condo Buyers’ Guide for Portland.  What is it like to live in a condo?  Condo owners enjoy many more amenities than the typical homeowner, from killer views atop high-rises to the privacy of a gated community with swimming pools and tennis courts. However, buyers must enter into HOA agreements carefully, and check the HOA’s financials to be sure that all of the shared costs will be covered.  From...


portland real estate market stories

Top 5 Portland Real Estate Market Stories of 2020 (so far)

July 3, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted real estate transactions in unprecedented ways in 2020, so it’s no surprise that most of our top news articles this year are related to that topic. But there have been a couple of other important stories that you may have missed in the crisis. Read on for everything you need to know about Portland real estate market in the first part of 2020. 1. Pandemic causes short Portland real estate crash, with near instant recovery. Starting in March, people began losing jobs at an alarming rate, many others lost savings when the stock market plunged, and the need for social distancing seemed to make buying and selling real estate impossible on a practical level. On...


home inspection vs appraisal results

Home Inspection VS. Appraisal: What’s the difference?

June 29, 2020

Home inspections and appraisals happen in the vast majority of real estate transactions. They both involve someone physically coming to the home and making an assessment. And both can have an influence on the eventual success or failure of the home sale. Note: This article is not focusing on refinance appraisals. With refi appraisals, it is more frequent that an appraiser doesn’t have to come inside the home (though often they still must). The appraisal must come in at value to get the whole refi loan you want, but you could go for less potentially. In our experience, the lender may appraise the home higher than its worth in a refi because it knows you have good credit or strong...


questions to ask realtor in interview

5 Questions to ask a Realtor in an Interview

June 26, 2020

Selling a home is one of the most important financial decisions a person makes during their lifetime, even if they make it multiple times. A good Realtor can make the experience stress free and enjoyable (or as enjoyable as possible) and financially rewarding. But how do you know if a Realtor will perform, how do you know if they are a good fit? Questions to ask a Realtor during an interview: 1. What are the exact terms of your cancellation policy? Okay, so maybe you didn’t expect this to be the first question. But honestly I think it should be. Let’s say you went through the interview process and the real estate agent told you everything you wanted to hear...


portland roof repair

Top 5 Roof Repairs: What to look for in 2020

June 22, 2020

Portland is a city with some special challenges for roof maintenance — big trees, a lot of flat roofs and high rainfall. And while roofs are easy to place in the “out of sight, out of mind” category, a compromised roof can compromise the entire structural integrity of the home. Whether you’re shopping for a home or considering putting one on the market, get to know the common roof issues that Portland homeowners experience.   Top 5 Roof Problems for Portland Homes It’s true with most things, but especially with roofs, that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Knowing these five signs of roof trouble could save you big bucks down the road: 1. Missing shingles...


average hoa cost portland real estate

Average HOA Cost in Portland Real Estate – 2020 Report

June 19, 2020

The average HOA or home owners association fee amount in the city of Portland isn’t easy to obtain. Sure, we have access to all the sold data as real estate agents, but HOAs are wildly different from one another. Some HOAs have no fees, they simply exists to enforce certain building standards or conditions of the homes in their area. Some HOAs cover very little, like a once a year $50 fee to maintain a community sign. Other HOAs cover all or most utilities, exterior maintenance, internet, pools, club houses, private parks, and much more. So it is tough to get an average cost, but it can be done. HOA Cost Formula Criteria In order to give the public an...


oregon city oregon elevator

5 Things you Didn’t Know About Oregon City

June 15, 2020

If we had to make a list of Portland suburbs posed for growth, Oregon City would probably be at the top. With a population of 37,000 and big plans for the future, this city stands as a destination in its own right — not just for tourists but for home buyers as well. Read on for five things you didn’t know about the first incorporated city west of the Rockies.  1. The Clackamas River is Awesome Oregon City is defined by its location between two rivers: The Willamette, which flows up from the south and heads toward downtown Portland, and the Clackamas. With headwaters in the Cascade Range, the Clackamas River flows through the Mt. Hood National Forest before dropping...


single level home portland real estate ranch

Single Level Homes Sell Faster and for More in Portland – 2020 Report

June 12, 2020

Portland homes come in a dazzling array of styles and layouts, from historic Craftsman bungalows to zero-energy modern homes. But recent sales data makes it pretty clear that Portland home buyers have an architectural favorite: It’s the humble single-level home, also known as ranch style. Singe Level Homes Sell for 19% More per Sq. Ft. According to the most recent RMLS statistics (June 2020), single level homes sold for an average of $289 per square foot, compared to just $235 per square foot for homes with two stories or more (looking at all home sales under 1 million in the previous four months). Single Level Homes Sell 25% Faster Single-level homes also sold more quickly than multi-levels: 36 days on...