Media stories about the continued decline & death of the real estate market are exaggerated hype meant to manipulate the masses!

Managing Real Estate Broker with Alta Realty Company, LLC RB 21961

Munster Mansion

You heard me right, the media stories about the continued decline and death of real estate are
exaggerated hype meant to manipulate the masses. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it! At least it is in my market, the Portland, Oregon metro area.

I know, I know prices are down and to that I say sweet! That means my buyer clients can get more bang for their buck. Combine those lower prices with historic low interest rates and SHAZAM! You've got a great time to invest in real estate.

Buyers are starting to get off the fence and are buying, I have statistical proof.

But first let's look at the overall sales figures for the last 13 years in the general Portland metro area. The statistics I am using do not include Vancouver, WA which is across the mighty Columbia River from us. Why only 13 years back you ask? Well that's all I can easily access from our RMLS online data system doing my statistical data search. Here are the overall numbers using only residential detached, attached & condos in areas 140-152.

2010 - 17,382 sales
2009 - 17,529 sales
2008 - 17,486 sales
2007 - 25,706 sales
2006 - 29,317 sales
2005 - 33,894 sales
2004 - 30,294 sales
2003 - 27,339 sales
2002 - 24,913 sales
2001 - 24,354 sales
2000 - 22,328 sales
1999 - 23,028 sales
1998 - 23,478 sales

Interesting numbers right? We have been pretty much constant the last 3 years. No suprise that 2003 thru 2007 appear to be the height of our sales frenzy, as far as the overall number of sales. And for the 5 years preceding that, we were once again pretty constant. So yes, the statistics prove our sales are at a 13 year low for the data readily available. However, those same statistics also show we appear to have leveled out for the last 3 years. We are not in a constant state of decline as the media would have you believe.

And here comes the positive news for recent sales!

Real Estate sales are picking up for the Portland metro area. If you compare pendings & solds for the first 3 weeks of 2011 (908 units) with the first 3 weeks of 2010 (776 units) you will see that pendings & solds are actually up 17.01%. If we were to extrapolate the increase to the entire year you would be looking at 20,338 sales. That would get us halfway back to that consistent level of sales we had in the 1998 - 2002 time period.

Will this upward sales trend continue, who knows? But buyers appear to be getting back into the market. I think they are starting to understand that interest rates have nowhere to go but up and are realizing that now may be a great window of opportunity to buy.


Comments (2)

Jason Lewis
Grey Owl Inspections - Honolulu, HI
Home Inspector

Thanks for the encouragement Donn! I've done detailed analysis using the Marion County data and I find the same thing.

Feb 14, 2011 10:50 AM
Brett Reichel
Homebridge Financial Services - Rancho Cucamonga, CA
MLO 210215

Great post Donn!  I like the statistical approach and this will be something I use with buyers now when they ask about the market.  I don't know if you've noticed it too, but I'm seeing a lot of buyers who haven't been able to buy since the late '90's.  Affordability is way up, with prices down and rates down the "average working stiff" can buy a house.  I think that's very encouraging for all of us in our local market!

Brett Reichel

Mar 20, 2011 06:44 AM