Portland Real Estate Market – Spring 2020, COVID 19 Update

portland real estate market spring

COVID 19 has had a tremendous impact on the spring Portland real estate market. But the coronavirus neither sending housing prices down nor sending prices up. The great real estate balance of the number of available buyers vs. the number of available homes – is about the same, so prices are stable. What has happened is a massive drop in home buyers and a massive drop in available inventory (homes for sale). Enough time has passed that we now have the real estate market numbers to share with you.

The market is changing weekly right now. See our most up-to-date Portland real estate market information here.

60% Drop in Home Buyers in Portland

portland real estate market buyers

Late March 2020 saw the biggest drop in Portland home buyers in the real estate market, perhaps the biggest drop in a single week we’ve ever seen. But since then, home buyer traffic has leveled off. I believe home buyer traffic will remain stable until the restrictions in Oregon are loosened and then it will skyrocket with pent up demand.

You can see in the most recent report that home buyer traffic has leveled off, while still remaining about 60% down from April of last year.

House Inventory Down 63% on Average on COVID 19 impacted markets.

According to an excellent article written by Inman news, across the globe listing inventory is down 63% on average for impacted real estate markets. We are seeing the first signs of that in Portland, Oregon.

Information provided by the excellent Fidelity of Portland title company. Now you have to look closely at the very end of the chart to notice that in April in Portland inventory starts to climb at a steep rate, and instead, it looks like inventory is headed down, just like the NYC chart above.

Information provided by RMLS. If you look closely at this pending chart on the Portland real estate market, you’ll see everything looks normal in Jan. and Feb. of 2020 and then all of the sudden in March the pending list drops. Due to less home buyers and less homes for sale, there will be a dramatic drop in overall real estate transactions and we are just looking at the beginning of the data reports. Once all of the April numbers come out on the Portland real estate market, everything will be clear as day. We had a really strong first half of March 2020, so any whole month real estate reports on March in Portland won’t tell the right story.

With a 60% Drop in Portland Homebuyers and Likely 60% Drop in Portland Homes for Sale – the Balance Remains

Prices are unlikely to go up or down in a significant way, anytime soon, due to the great real estate balance (supply vs. demand) staying the same.

We get faster data on home buyer traffic (weekly) than we do for inventory reports (monthly), but it does seem clear to me based on other real estate market averages, my own local searches, and the trajectory charts above, that our current Portland real estate market inventory is down or will shortly be down to match the 60% drop in home buyer traffic.

Which means this: if you have a home to sell, it will likely still sell for a good price in a reasonable amount of time. If you want / need to buy a home, real estate market inventory will be reasonable and the sales process (other than practicing social distancing) relatively normal. Bottom line: real estate sales will continue in Portland, Oregon, (almost as normal) but with significantly less transactions. Luxury home sales and condo sales, which require activity from a smaller buyer pool, will suffer more than they already were going to in our 2020 Portland real estate market forecast.

Our team is ready with 100% social distancing options for buyers and sellers.

We’ve created a simply step by step guide, along with video here, but you can also simply reach out and give us a call today. 503-714-1111 for sellers and 503-773-0000 for buyers. We’d love to talk with you about your real estate goals today.

April 13, 2020

Stephen FitzMaurice

Stephen FitzMaurice, Realtor is a top 5% real estate agent in the U.S. A Principal Broker in Oregon, Managing Broker in Washington, he has been licensed since 2003 for residential real estate sales. Call his team in Oregon at 503-714-1111 or in Washington at 360-345-3833.

4% max to sell a home in Portland and SW Washington.
4.25% max to sell a home in Salem and Bend.
Over 2,000 homes sold.