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Mortgage Rates Remain Low & Stable While Portland Metro Home Prices Begin To Stabilize

In Home buying, Market Statistics, Portland Market Update, Portland Oregon Real Estate, Portland Real Estate, Portland Real Estate News by Juli


Mortgage Rates Remain Low and Stable

The Fed left policy rates unchanged the June 2017 FOMC meeting. They did say though that they will begin reducing their balance sheet ‘relatively soon.’

Wall Street’s reaction to the Fed’s statement was also positive for mortgage rates. Speculation is the Fed will take gradual action when tightening economic policy, but this may not start until or after the December Fed meeting.

Inflation continues to come in below the Fed’s desired level of 2% and will be monitored. Low inflation is supportive of lower mortgage rates.


Home Prices Are Stabilizing As Inventory Slowly Increases

Existing home sales fell more than expected in June, and lack of affordable homes is the likely cause. Lack of homes has led to bidding wars and higher home prices in the Portland Metro market for homes below $500,000. Higher priced homes are shifting into a balanced market with about 6 months of inventory available for sale. This balancing is resulting in price reductions in up to 38% of the homes in some metro area zip codes.

After a sluggish start to 2017, new home sales increased for the second straight month in June. The inventory of new homes on the market increased 1.1%, the highest level in 8 years. This is another indicator of a balancing in the market and suggests that appreciation will flatten over the rest of 2017.

According to Case-Shiller, major US metro area home prices are up 5.7% year-over-year. This is the sweet spot for healthy market apprecation and an indicator of market stability. Inventory of existing homes for sale in the US is around 4 months, still a seller’s market overall, but less robust than the past 4 years.

Juli Martin is a Principal Real Estate Broker representing both sellers and buyers with Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty in Portland, Oregon. To contact: Cell +1-971-808-9618 or email

The Value of Eco-Friendly Features

In Uncategorized by Juli

Oregon home buyers are more interested that ever in eco-friendly features. Earth-friendly appliances, finishes, and upgrades often tip the scales toward one home and fetch higher sale prices because buyers recognize the cost-savings, increased comfort, and the importance of feeling good about the health and environmental impact of the place they call home.

Check out this info graphic for the specifics.


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Should I Buy or Rent in Portland, Oregon?

In Uncategorized by Juli

The transition from renting to owning is a major financial step, but not as significant as you may think in the Portland, OR metro area. You’ll need a down payment of 3.5% – 10%, solid credit and a plan to live in the same place for long enough to make buying worth your time and money. 75% of renters say owning a home is better than renting because it’s a solid investment and protects you from rent increases, according to the Fannie Mae National Housing Survey.


Here’s how the numbers break down:

Average home price in Portland: $395,000

Monthly payment to buy a 3 bedroom/2 bath for $395,000 with 5% down: $2,450

Monthly payment to rent the same house: $2000 – $2600/mo (according to

Down payment: (3.5%) $13,825 – (10%) $39,500

Closing costs: (about 1%) $3,950 (closing costs can be negotiated into the loan. Make sure you have a good realtor, like me, who knows how to do this)

Solid credit score: 580 or better; the higher your credit score, the better interest rate and loan options available for you (I can advise you on credit improvement strategies and introduce you to a mortgage broker who can help you get approved for a home loan)

Rent vs Buy Calculator: Check out this interactive rent-vs-buy calculator or contact me and I’ll run the numbers for you.

How much house can you afford: use this calculator for a quick, no-login-required estimate:


It generally makes financial sense to buy only if you plan to stay in that home for at least five years. You can’t always count on the home’s value to stay the same or increase, meaning you could lose money if you sell soon after buying. The larger a down payment you can make, the more financially secure you will be. You’ll also get a lower interest rate on your mortgage, meaning a lower monthly payment.

If you have questions or are interested in purchasing a home in the greater Portland Metro area, please contact me for more information or to ask any questions you have.*

Extraordinary Property Spotlight: 83 Acre Riverfront Farm Ranch Estate

In Featured Property For Sale, Portland Oregon Real Estate, Portland Real Estate by Juli

Current Price: $1,150,000. Riverfront 83 acre Farm Estate in Bay City on the Oregon Coast. It’s just a 5 minute drive  to Tillamook Bay marina in Garibaldi & 15 min to the beach. This special property includes 2 homes, a 12,752 SF super barn, 12 stall pole barn, 5 bay machine shed/garage remodeled in 2014,  and 1/2 mile of Miami River frontage with trout and salmon. Ideal Uses: Fishing/Hunting lodge, Horse Ranch, Farm, Wildlife Preserve, Auto Collection, Retreat Center. Selling for health reasons. Seller is open to creative/reasonable offers including seller financing and/or real estate or classic car trades.