Portland Real Estate Blog

This is a top 100 real estate blog in the world according to Feedspot.com. In particular, this is a local real estate blog written by a top 1% real estate agent in the U.S., Stephen FitzMaurice, Realtor. Stephen regularly reports on the greater Portland metro area’s real estate market including annual housing forecasts and best time to sell or buy a home reports. He gives home selling and home buying professional advice. He also writes informative articles on Portland neighborhoods and suburbs as they relate to the real estate market. Finally, he writes to inform the general public about real estate agents, such as annual average real estate agent commission reports and more.

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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...

cohabitation in portland

Buying a Portland Home – with a little help from your friends

October 15, 2013

In the early 1970’s, Portland activists organized to collectively buy a home in Northeast Portland. They called it “Terrasquirma”. The idea was that by sharing the mortgage and other costs of running the household, the owners could have more time and resources to devote to their various causes. It worked – among other things, Terrasquirma’s residents created a recycling network that laid the groundwork for the city’s first municipal recycling system. Terrasquirma dissolved in 1979, but cooperative housing hung on in Portland. More recently, people who have no activist inclinations whatsoever have also begun to see the benefits of sharing a home title. The advantages of home ownership are well understood – tax breaks, a sense of freedom and security,...

real estate disclosures

Portland Real Estate Disclosures for Buyers and Sellers 2013

October 7, 2013

In the Portland real estate market, it is vital to provide the buyers and sellers with proper disclosures. These real estate disclosures change depending on whether the property is a regular sale, short sale, estate sale, or foreclosure sale. The disclosures will also change depending on the type of property, townhome, condo, detached, and year built. I’ve attached a few PDFs to this post that contain important Portland real estate disclosures for 2013. The real estate disclosures do not always change year to year, but they tend to change over time. What follows below is not even close to a comprehensive list for Portland real estate disclosures, but it does include some very important highlights. Oregon Real Estate Agency Disclosure...

portland real estate market

Portland Real Estate Market: Strong End to Summer

September 28, 2013

By all accounts in the real estate business, it was a successful summer in Portland. The August RMLS report for the Portland real estate market paints the picture in numbers: In August alone, 2,623 buyers closed on the perfect home – and, as it usually goes in the summer – there were even more closed sales in the previous two months. Home sellers were busy too, getting 3,423 new listings on the market this August. Overall, looking at the average and median sales prices for a Portland home from the beginning of the year to August, prices are up by around 15% compared to last year. The Portland real estate market usually winds down in August and September, so it’s...

yards in portland

Portland Home Selling Tips: Preparing Your Yard in the Fall

September 23, 2013

It’s that time of year again in the Northwest, the school bells are ringing and we begin to revaluate the quality of our rain gear. Fall in the Portland is a time of preparing and planning. As the average Portland home prices are rising, up 14% from the same time last year, it is also a time where we typically start preparing for a spring sale. One of the best and cost effective ways to begin to prepare your home for sale is to tend to our yards now. With the soil still warm from summer, and the fresh rain, roots grow faster and we are able to give our foliage a head start on next year’s growth. Portland home...