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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real estate market

Portland Real Estate Market 2014 Prediction

December 30, 2013

Portland should have a banner year in real estate in 2014. Portland’s “underwater” mortgage rate is among the nation’s lowest. Corelogic is reporting only 6.6% of the Portland real estate market has mortgages higher than what the property is worth. This is way down from what Zillow reported in the Portland market in early 2012, a whopping 16.9% of Portland homes were underwater. So what does that mean for 2014 home sales? Basically it means that Portland homes are worth more and not a significantly larger number of home owners will be able to sell their homes come 2014. More homes will hit the market and sell, and those same sellers who likely have been waiting years for the opportunity,...


real estate agent reviews

Should I trust Portland Real Estate Agent Reviews?

December 17, 2013

Can you trust Portland real estate agent reviews? I’ve made it a policy to get real estate agent reviews from my clients. I want to know if I provided the highest level of customer service – or not. I’ve collected over 100 positive Portland real estate agent reviews, see them here, and an award called Five Star Professional, which surveys thousands of home owners and home buyers in order to give out customer service awards in real estate. I feel good about the great reviews I’ve received over the years. When people visit my website or other websites where my reviews are located often they are impressed. However, I know some have had serious doubts when seeing online Portland real...


mortgage lenders portland

How to Choose a Mortgage Lender in Portland

December 16, 2013

Congratulations! You’ve decided to relocate to the great city of Portland, Oregon (or just moving across town, which is exciting, too). You’ve checked out the Portland neighborhoods, figured out how much home you can afford, and now you’re ready to take out a mortgage. A mortgage is like a bridge between where you are and where you want to be – you don’t have all the money to pay for your home now, so a mortgage fills in the gap of time that it will take you to attain those funds. Portland has lots of bridges, and we have lots of options for Portland mortgage lenders, too. You could head to your old, trusted bank or credit union. Or, you...


real estate market portland

Rent Vs. Buy in Portland Real Estate Market Prediction 2014

December 6, 2013

Which is a better investment? Should you avoid risk and keep renting, or bite the bullet and purchase a home? Here are some key factors to consider: Portland area rents have incrased an average of 5% in 2013. That is an annual “depreciation” of -5%. In contrast home prices have risen in Portland 10% from 2012 to 2013. According to the Portland Metropolitan Association of Realtors: The average annual monthly home payment in Portland was 14,467 in 2013, while the average rent paid was 13,212. However, the homeowner had an average interest deduction of $2,853, property tax deduction of $896 and gained appreciation (equity) of $4,702. This is based on median home prices in Portland and a 30 year fixed...


condos in portland

Buying a Portland Condo: Six questions to ask

December 1, 2013

Condo sales in the Portland real estate market are steadily rising. Portland condos took the hardest hit during the housing bubble and crash, but are rebounding fast. Many think a Portland condo is one of your best (and last) chances to still get a deal from the Portland housing market crash. From first-time homebuyers to empty-nesters looking to downsize, a condo is a great, affordable housing option for many Portland residents. With inventory in the Portland housing market low and the economy picking up again, condos are becoming an even more popular option. But owning a condo is different from owning a house for several reasons. Before you buy, read the fine print and ask plenty of questions. Here are...


reasons to have a realtor

150 Reasons to use a REALTOR in Portland

November 29, 2013

The Portland Metropolitan Association of Realtors came up with 150 reasons to use a Realtor in Portland this year. These reasons are a list of 150 things Realtors in Portland do for their clients. As PMAR states, “Depending on the transaction, some may take minutes, hours, or even days to complete, while some might not be needed at all.” They also give a useful reminder that not all Portland real estate agents are Realtors in Portland. See my 12 designations here. Instead of listing all 150 reasons, which you can find at the PMAR website, we will highlight some of the most significant tasks in the 150 that a Realtor in Portland will accomplish. A Realtor in Portland selling your...


cleaning gutters portland

Clean Your Portland Gutters, Save Thousands in Damages

November 13, 2013

According to the City of Portland, there are 236,000 trees lining the streets of our city. If each of the counted trees produces 200,000 leaves a year, that means Portlanders must clear away a whopping 47 billion leaves every autumn. Of course, not all of the trees are deciduous (meaning they lose their leaves in the fall), but with the unknowable thousands of trees planted off-street on Portland properties, there are likely to be billions more leaves out there – cluttering sidewalks, obscuring the patio furniture, and clogging gutters. Raking or blowing leaves takes care of your on-the-ground tree litter problem, but what about those gutters? Many Portland homeowners may be tempted to let the rain do the work of...


for sale by owner Portland

Should I Sell a FSBO (For Sale By Owner) in Portland?

November 12, 2013

According to the NAR (National Association of Realtors) 2013 report, only 9% of today’s sellers are FSBO (For Sale By Owner). This is close to the Portland Real Estate Market as well, where NAR report 8% of Urban market areas are FSBO. Are FSBO sellers successful? In a recent Fall 2012 survey a huge study was done of home sellers nationwide by HomeGain. The survey reported sellers who used real estate agents were twice as likely to sell their home than FSBO. About 2/3 of home sellers who used a real estate agent successfully sold their home, while only 1/3 of FSBO owners sold their home. Of those who did sell, according to the NAR report, 40% knew the buyer...


professional photography portland

Professional Photographs – should I use to sell my Portland home?

October 29, 2013

In a word, yes. Unless you are selling a fixer in as-is condition, professional photographs will make all the difference in marketing your Portland home for sale. The number one thing that makes homes sell these days is internet exposure (see our in-depth post here) and I strongly believe the number two thing is the pictures those buyers see online. Amazingly, many Portland real estate agents take terrible, and I mean terrible photos of their own listings. Personally as a licensed Realtor in Portland, I have taken a few classes on professional photography and bought for myself a top of the line Canon SLR with the appropriate lenses. And still, I recommend calling in the professionals – more often than...


portland real estate market

Portland Real Estate Market Update: Autumn as usual?

October 28, 2013

The Portland real estate market – just like real estate markets across the world – has its yearly cycle. For any number of reasons, buying and selling activity slows down in the winter, picks up in the spring, goes crazy in the summer, and quiets down again in the fall. Given these cycles, one would expect the September RMLS report for Portland to show numbers that reflect slightly less activity than August. Bingo – the number of closed sales is down 18%, the number of new listings is down 15%, and the average sales price for a Portland home slipped from $321,900 in August to 317,300 in September. To get a complete picture of what’s happening in the Portland real...