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Portland Blog: This Week in Portland June 20-27

It's hard to believe but today is the last official day of spring! Seems as though she took forever to get here and leaves with barely a warning and now summer is slinking in ever so quietly....

June 21st begins the official Portland summer which will be, like it always has been, amazing. Everyone says Portland summers have no equal and I must agree. Our monthly Portland photo contest is "Show us in images what embodies the Portland summer to you". As they say, a picture is worth a million words. With that, I share with you what summer looks like to me:

Summer is:




I look forward to seeing your photos and experiencing new ways of looking at and feeling summer in PDX. The best photo wins a super cool gift certificate to a super cool local Portland business. Past winners have received gift certs to McMenamins, Powells Books, Saraveza, Toro Bravo and more.


Featured Portland Events


Sight Unseen A rich painter. An old flame. A London tour. A smart, sparking story about love, success and sell-out in the world of art.

"The milieu is the art world, and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Donald Margulies takes us on a rocky backward and forward journey through the career, values, and loves of a now-famous painter. It's about the art scene, the loss of love, and the price of assimilation - both ethnic and intellectual - in an America where authenticity often has little to do with an artist's, or anyone's rise to the top."

View this Portland Event

The Mississippi Avenue Street Fair An event that simply cannot be missed! Mark your calendars for July 11-- we'll be there with bells on!!

Tons of live music, dancers, a parade!, craft beer tasting, fun kid events like dunking stations and the Boise Eliot Elementary features bouncy castles and kids games for all sizes at Beech, awesome food galore, crafts and sooo much more. Can't miss this awesome urban Portland event! Never been to Mississippi Ave before? Take a virtual tour...

View this Portland Event

This Thursday, June 25th is Last Thursday over on Alberta Street. If you miss this one, you'll have to wait a whole month until the next....Last Thursday. So don't miss it.

A combination art gallery "hop" and neighborhood street fair all rolled into one. If nothing else, enjoy the swarming crowds, and have fun people watching. You'll also have the opportunity to pick up some local arts and crafts work at great prices. Support your neighborhood arts! Visit the Alberta Arts neighborhood

View this Portland Event

There are many more great Portland events this week, just visit the Portland Events calendar!



Portland Photo of the Week


"I served as designated driver yesterday for a group going through our beautiful Willamette Valley wine country and grabbed this shot along the way." Thank you, JohnK, for sharing the beauty you find in and around Portland.





June 2009: Portland Real Estate Report: What's Happening? by Ross Seligman


A note about my statistics:

They are a comparison of May 2008 - May 2009 for all of Multnomah County and are taken directly from the RMLS. What follows is my own analysis of these statistics. For our purposes, I thought it best to analyze Multnomah County as a whole. Each neighborhood, however, is a little micro-universe and has its own market. Changing the parameters of the zip codes, price variables, or time periods can lead to very different results. This analysis is of all homes sold in all price ranges in Multnomah County. If you have any questions about specific zip codes, or any questions about the market in general, please reply to this forum with those questions or feel free to contact me at: http://www.propertiesofportland.com. Since Portland is a neighborhood city, you can now search by "Irvington, Alberta, etc.". You can check it out here

What's Happening?

Like last month, we have an increase in closed and pending sales! Although the increase in closed sales is small, it is still in the right direction... up. Inventory has increased due to people who were waiting to list their house in the spring and summer. As the summer progresses, I predict a further surge in sales, especially among first time home buyers who will be scrambling to get the best homes before the November deadline. For those of you who have been keeping up with this blog, you know what I'm talking about. For information on what this means, click here.

In my own business, I have seen an upsurge in higher priced home sales as well. Last week I helped a client get an offer accepted for a home in a much higher price range. We were up against 2 other buyers who all were willing to pay full price for the home. I hadn't been in that situation for that price range in quite awhile, especially when jumbo loans were difficult to obtain. Now, however, it seems that the Portland market is balancing out and, if a home is priced correctly, it will sell, possibly with multiple offers.

It is nice to see the market being more balanced and sane than the craziness we have experienced in the last two years. It will be interesting to see if this is a real recovery or a seasonal bump. My feeling is that things are really improving. I'm not going to quote economic indicators. My feeling about this is due to the psychological shift that I have seen happen in the last six months. It has been a clear change from despair (which prevailed for at least the last year and a half) to excitement.

Read the rest of this report by local Portland Realtor and Ecobroker, Ross Seligman.

Urban Renewal Areas by Wade Willis


Did you ever wonder how Mississippi became the next cool neighborhood in Portland? Or why there are new, trendy businesses being opened in neighborhoods that don’t seem to be able to support them? The short and very unsophisticated answer is: Urban Renewal.

The articles I have been composing for the last several weeks have been meant to provide information about different aspects or mortgages in general. The next couple of articles will focus on how certain loan programs will help homes in the Portland area specifically.

The Portland Development Commission has been instrumental in allocating funds to specific neighborhoods with the specific goal of revitalizing that area.

To give you an idea here is their Vision Statement off of their website

The Portland Development Commission’s Vision is to be a catalyst for positive change in the creation of a world-class 21st Century city; a city in which economic prosperity, quality housing and employment opportunities are available to all.

Their Mission Statement is:

Our Mission is to bring together resources to achieve Portland’s vision of a diverse, sustainable community with healthy neighborhoods, a vibrant central city, a strong regional economy, and quality jobs and housing for all.

There are different programs available to areas that are within urban renewal zones. But more on that next week. This week I want to talk about some of the challenges and opportunities that exist in some of these areas.

First the challenges. Most home buyers will search for a house that they can live in upon purchase and in exists in a neighborhood that is appealing to them currently. Others look at home buying as a place to call home but also as an investment into their families future. For these folks, many of them will look for neighborhoods in the city where there is potential for their home to gain in value quicker than in more established neighborhoods. They research where new businesses are being established, where homes are being remodeled, and where the Portland Development Commission has designated an urban renewal area.

Typically, if houses in a particular neighborhood are being remodeled and new businesses are opening, then it is likely that the rate that a home will potentially appreciate will be much greater than other neighborhoods.

This may give you greater financial leverage in the future. For example, if you were to purchase a $250,000 property in a trendy, yet established neighborhood like Hawthorne, based on the 2007 average appreciation for Portland at 6.2%, you can expect to see your house be worth $265,000 at the end of your first year of homeownership. A $15,000 gain in value.

If you were to purchase that same house in a neighborhood like the Mississippi or Alberta Arts neighborhoods were years ago just as they were becoming the next big thing, your house might have appreciated at a rate of 12% per year or more. At the end of the first year your $250,000 house would be worth $280,000 in a years time. A gain of $30,000.

As you can surmise, someone who knew how to read the signs of a neighborhoods future, could potentially sell their property in 3 years time for almost $100K in profit. That could equate to putting a $100K down payment on their next property, or getting rid of mortgage insurance if they bought the house with less than 80% down payment.

Beyond the challenge of attempting to peer into the crystal ball to see which neighborhoods will be the next big thing, the more immediate challenge with purchasing a property in these areas before they are established is that many of the properties are in need of repair. This already adds more costs to an already expensive transaction. Now, in addition to the closing costs, prepaid expenses, and down payment, you must pay for repairs. Many can’t afford this additional expense. Nor do they want to have to live in a house that is in need of repair or wait until to move into the house until the repairs are complete.

In addition, mortgage lenders not only qualify the borrower for a home loan, but the property has to meet specific standards as well. Most lenders will require that certain repairs be complete prior to funding the loan. This makes sense since it is an investment for the lender. They want to make sure that if the borrower were to walk away from the property for some reason, that the house would be in condition to sell.

There is a loan product, however, that is designed specifically for properties that won’t normally qualify for a new loan. The idea is to encourage people to purchase homes in order to help neighborhoods revitalize. The ideas is that a buyer will purchase a home and finance it through this program. In addition to financing the property, the costs of the repair are also financed into the same loan. The FHA 203(k) is a Rehabilitation Mortgage product that is insured by The Federal Housing Administration.

Next weeks article will be about the FHA 203(k) product and it’s guidelines.

View the original article prepared by Wade Willis Portland's Sound ...

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Comment by Lorri E. on June 23, 2009 at 7:22am
Awesome blog and summertime PDX photos! :-)

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Oregon Sinfonietta Performs Mahler Symphony No. 4 in Free Concert at Sunnyside Seventh-day Adventist Church

November 4, 2018 from 3pm to 4:30pm
The award-winning Oregon Sinfonietta, now in its 46th season and conducted by Dr. Donald L. Appert, is a full symphony orchestra of 75+ members that draws together community musicians from the greater Portland metro area. The Sinfonietta performs four free concerts per season. On Sunday, November 4, 2018 at 3:00 pm, the orchestra presents Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No 4. in G Major. Joining the orchestra for this…See More
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Holiday Wine Sale: 12 for $12 at Pairings Portland Wine Shop & Bar

September 28, 2018 at 12pm to September 30, 2018 at 6pm
Come stock up on delicious wine for the holidays! Here's how it works:• 12 handpicked wines all selling for $12 a bottle• $12 to taste all 12 wines• 12% off EVERY BOTTLE on our shelves• BONUS GIFT: Two tickets to a Food & Wine Pairing Class when you buy 12+ bottlesJoin us:Friday Sept 28--12 to 10 pmSaturday Sept 29--12 to 10 pmSunday Sept 30--12-6 pmSee More
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Artistic Portland introduces “Art After Dark” at First Thursday Gallery Art Walk in October 2018 at Artistic Portland

October 4, 2018 from 2pm to 9pm
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Sophisticated Beads Holiday Jewelry Show at Monarch Hotel & Conference Center

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Artistic Portland Celebrates the Gorgeous Gorge at First Thursday Art Walk on September 6, 2018 at Artistic Portland

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Oregon State Fair at Oregon State Fair

August 24, 2018 to September 3, 2018
The Oregon State Fair is back for its 153rd year, with 10 days of traditional family fun! Favorite attractions are back — street performers, horse competitions, games, carnival rides, and music. Enjoy more modern offerings such as dog-agility shows and even robots. The Fair is the perfect grand finale to the summer!See More
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