Bend Real Estate Blog

We provide you with the latest Bend Oregon Real Estate updates as well as general information on Bend and other real estate in Central Oregon.

Oct. 28, 2017

Bend Oregon Home Prices Back to Normal

Home Prices in Bend Are Rising

Now that the great recession is behind us and the real estate bubble is in the past the prices of homes in Bend have reached their highs of 2006.  But now our rate of appreciation is much less than it was back then.  We are seeing increases of less than 10% as a general rule.

Awbrey Butte Home

 

Bend is a great place to raise a family or retire.  We have great fishing, golfing, good schools and great shopping.  Feel free to sign up for a free account to search for all properties for sale in Bend.  HOME SEARCH

 

July 7, 2017

Bend Oregon Pickleball

People across the nation are looking to retire in Central Oregon and Bend.  Besides the great weather, scenic beauty, many hiking trails, fishing, downtown Bend, The Old Mill District, shopping and now Pickleball has hit Oregon with a vengeance. 

We now feature 16 professional courts open to the public thru Park and Rec and the Bend Pickleball Club.  Pickleball is a great sport for young and old.  Retired residents like it because you don't have to move a lot or run.  It's good exercise but not too strenuous.  

For more information go to Bend Pickleball Club.

July 2, 2017

Bend Real Estate Shortage

The price of Bend homes is back to where it was before the great recession and there are fewer homes on the market. The median priced home in Bend is now $379,900 and rising.  However prices are not rising at the unsustainable rate of the pre recession prices. 

Even though prices are rising and inventory is a little short now is a good time to buy a home in Central Oregon.  There' a high demand for homes in Bend as it is one of the nicest places to live in the United States.  It sits at the foot of the Cascades mountains to the west and the high desert to the east.  Residents can be in the mountains in 30 minutes or in the high desert in 30 minutes.

Bend's population would be much higher if there were more jobs.  Affordable housing is one problem that's occurring. However, the state finally improved an expansion of our urban growth boundary allowing for more apartments and less expensive homes to be built.   

Downtown Bend and the Old Mill District are some of the main attractions to newcomers.

June 27, 2017

Deschutes County Endangers Residents by Ignoring State Regulations

There is one main road that is used by residents of Deschutes River Woods in Bend for evacuation in case of fire and that is Baker Rd.  Deschutes county engineer Chris Doty approved the installation of stop signs at the intersection of Brookswood and Baker Rd. against state regulations.  

The stop signs would be a major cause of congestion if there was a wildfire in the area.  Lives could be lost because Deschutes River Woods is a heavily treed subdivision and susceptible to fire.  One home burned to the ground there in the Awbrey Hall Fire.

These illegal signs were brought to the attention of the county commissioners but they have done nothing about removing them.  If lives are lost due to these stop signs Deschutes County could be liable for millions of dollars because of their actions.

This area only has several hundred residents so does not get the attention of our elected officials.  If this were to happen on Bend's NW side where our more influential residents live there would be swift action to remove said signs. Let's hope our officials give the poorer residents of our community some of their attention and remove the signs and restore the convenience and safety to residents of Deschutes River Woods.

 

June 20, 2017

Deschutes County Ignores Regulations

During the construction of a Roundabout project on Brookswood and Murphy Rd. two additional stop signs were placed (“Temporarily”) on Baker Rd. to accommodate the detoured traffic from Brookswood. Upon completion of the project Deschutes County chose to leave the two stop signs on Baker Rd.

This decision is in violation of state law. It does not meet any of the criteria of the Uniform Traffic Control Devises for the State of Oregon.

Baker Rd. is the major access road into and out of Deschutes River Woods. The two stop signs on Baker cause traffic to back up on Baker during certain times of the day. At other times it causes unnecessary stops for the hundreds of citizens who use Baker Rd.

Unfortunately none of the government engineers will admit that one of their fellow engineers made a mistake.

April 18, 2016

Investment Real Estate

Characteristics of Investment-Home Purchases

The typical investment-home buyer in 2015 had a median household income of $95,800 ($87,680 in 2014) and bought a detached single-family home (62 percent) that was a median distance of 22 miles from their primary residence (24 miles in 2014).

Investment buyers last year purchased property for a variety of reasons, with an increasing share from 2014 citing rental income as the primary reason (42 percent; 37 percent in 2014), followed by low prices and the buyer found a good deal (16 percent), and for potential price appreciation (14 percent).

Likely reflecting growing demand towards renting in the city, investment purchases in urban areas increased to 29 percent (26 percent in 2014). Purchased properties from investment buyers were more likely to be in the South (37 percent) and in a suburban area (41 percent).

Perhaps encouraged by rising housing demand and home prices, over 80 percent of both vacation buyers and investment buyers believe that now is a good time to purchase real estate.     

NAR's 2016 Investment and Vacation Home Buyers Survey, conducted in March 2016, surveyed a sample of households that had purchased any type of residential real estate during 2015. The survey sample was drawn from a representative panel of U.S. adults monitored and maintained by an established survey research firm. A total of 2,053 qualified adults responded to the survey. Respondents were sampled to meet age and income quotas representative of all home buyers drawn from the NAR 2015 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.

Investment in homes in Bend Oregon continue to accelerate.  

Feb. 22, 2016

Bend Oregon Realtors support VA Home Loans

Bend Oregon Realtors Support Vet Loans 

The National Association of Realtors® strongly supports the Veterans Affairs Department’s Home Loan Guaranty Program and Specially Adapted Housing Grants and looks forward to working with the VA on further initiatives to ensure home ownership remains in reach for America’s veterans.

That was the message NAR 2016 Vice President Sherri Meadows delivered today before the U.S. House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity.

“Veterans deserve the very best we have to offer as thanks for their service and sacrifice,” said Meadows. “NAR applauds the good work that the VA is doing to assist veterans who want to purchase a home, and we’re excited to work with them and improve those programs. There’s a real opportunity ahead to strengthen existing benefits and help more veterans achieve the dream of  The National Association of Realtors® strongly supports the Veterans Affairs Department’s Home Loan Guaranty Program and Specially Adapted Housing Grants and looks forward to working with the VA on further initiatives to ensure homeownership remains in reach for America’s veterans.

That was the message NAR 2016 Vice President Sherri Meadows delivered today before the U.S. House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity.

“Veterans deserve the very best we have to offer as thanks for their service and sacrifice,” said Meadows. “NAR applauds the good work that the VA is doing to assist veterans who want to purchase a home, and we’re excited to work with them and improve those programs. There’s a real opportunity ahead to strengthen existing benefits and help more veterans achieve the dream of homeownership.”

Speaking about the VA’s Home Loan Guaranty Program, Meadows told the committee that NAR supports an increase in VA loan limits. Such a move would recognize the challenge posed by purchasing a home in certain high-cost areas and give veterans greater flexibility in their purchasing decisions.

In addition, Meadows advocated changes to current rules about the fees that can be charged to veterans during the home purchase transaction. NAR strongly supports VA’s efforts to shield veterans from excessive fees, but Meadows noted these rules can have unintended consequences and put veterans on an uneven playing field. NAR supports allowing veterans to negotiate the payment of certain fees, just as non-VA borrowers do, so they can compete fairly with other buyers.

In her testimony, Meadows also reiterated NAR’s support for the creation of a Veterans Renovation Pilot Program, similar to the Federal Housing Administration’s 203(k) program. The VA already has the authority to create such a program, which would allow veterans to purchase a home in need of a renovation while still enjoying the benefits of the VA guaranty.

Similarly, Meadows spoke in favor of fully funding and staffing the Specially Adapted Housing Program, which offers grants allowing disabled veterans to find or remodel housing to accommodate special needs.

Veterans face a number of unique challenges when purchasing a home, and many Realtors® have built an expertise in this area.

Meadows shared that many Realtors® are veterans themselves and noted NAR’s commitment to educating more Realtors® about working with current and former military service members through its “Military Relocation Professional Certificate” program..”

Speaking about the VA’s Home Loan Guaranty Program, Meadows told the committee that NAR supports an increase in VA loan limits. Such a move would recognize the challenge posed by purchasing a home in certain high-cost areas and give veterans greater flexibility in their purchasing decisions.

In addition, Meadows advocated changes to current rules about the fees that can be charged to veterans during the home purchase transaction. NAR strongly supports VA’s efforts to shield veterans from excessive fees, but Meadows noted these rules can have unintended consequences and put veterans on an uneven playing field. NAR supports allowing veterans to negotiate the payment of certain fees, just as non-VA borrowers do, so they can compete fairly with other buyers.

In her testimony, Meadows also reiterated NAR’s support for the creation of a Veterans Renovation Pilot Program, similar to the Federal Housing Administration’s 203(k) program. The VA already has the authority to create such a program, which would allow veterans to purchase a home in need of a renovation while still enjoying the benefits of the VA guaranty.

Similarly, Meadows spoke in favor of fully funding and staffing the Specially Adapted Housing Program, which offers grants allowing disabled veterans to find or remodel housing to accommodate special needs.

Veterans face a number of unique challenges when purchasing a home, and many Realtors® have built an expertise in this area.

Meadows shared that many Realtors® are veterans themselves and noted NAR’s commitment to educating more Realtors about working with current and former military service members through its “Military Relocation Professional Certificate” program.

Veterans looking for Bend Oregon Real Estate can search the MLS with this link!

Feb. 15, 2016

Homes Real Estate Prices Accelerating

 Home Prices Rising

A moderating pace of sales had little impact on the trajectory of home prices during the final three months of the year, which picked up speed and showed continued growth in most of the U.S., according to the latest quarterly report by the National Association of Realtors®.

The median existing single-family home price increased in 81 percent of measured markets, with 145 out of 179 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) showing gains based on closings in the fourth quarter compared with the fourth quarter of 2014. Thirty-four areas (19 percent) recorded lower median prices from a year earlier.

There were slightly fewer rising markets in the fourth quarter compared to the third quarter, when price gains were recorded in 87 percent of metro areas. Thirty metro areas in the fourth quarter (17 percent) experienced double-digit increases, a jump from the 20 metro areas in the third quarter. Twenty-two metro areas (12 percent) experienced double-digit increases in the fourth quarter of 2014.

For all of 2015, an average of 89 percent of measured metro areas saw increasing home prices, up from the averages in 2014 (83 percent) and 2013 (88 percent).

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says faster price growth reawakened in the final months of 2015 despite the pace of sales slowing from earlier in the year. "Even with slightly cooling demand, the unshakable trend of inadequate supply in relation to the overall pool of prospective buyers inflicted upward pressure on home prices in several metro areas," he said. "As a result, home ownership continues to be out of reach for a number of qualified buyers in the top job producing, but costliest, parts of the country – especially on the West Coast and parts of the South."

The national median existing single-family home price in the fourth quarter was $222,700, up 6.9 percent from the fourth quarter of 2014 ($208,400). The median price during the third quarter of 2015 increased 5.4 percent from the third quarter of 2014.  

Total existing-home sales, including single family and condo, declined 5.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.18 million in the fourth quarter from 5.48 million in the third quarter, but are 2.4 percent higher than the 5.06 million pace during the fourth quarter of 2014.

"Without a significant ramp-up in new home construction and more homeowners listing their homes for sale, buyers are likely to see little relief in the form of slowing price growth in the months ahead," adds Yun. 

Rising home prices, despite lower mortgage rates and an increase in the national family median income ($68,034), caused affordability to fall in the fourth quarter compared to the fourth quarter of last year. To purchase a single-family home at the national median price, a buyer making a 5 percent down payment would need an income of $49,535, a 10 percent down payment would require an income of $46,928, and $41,714 would be needed for a 20 percent down payment.

"Recent employment data is starting to show some pick-up in wage growth as the labor market edges near full employment," adds Yun. "With price appreciation likely to continue at the same pace – and even higher in some markets – incomes need to rise even more to keep affordability conditions from declining further."

The five most expensive housing markets in the fourth quarter were the San Jose, Calif., metro area, where the median existing single-family price was $940,000; San Francisco, $781,600; Honolulu, $716,600; Anaheim-Santa Ana, Calif., $708,700; and San Diego, $546,800.

The five lowest-cost metro areas in the fourth quarter were Youngstown-Warren-Boardman, Ohio, $81,200; Cumberland, Md., $86,100; Rockford, Ill., $87,600; Decatur, Ill., $90,000; and Wichita Falls, Texas, $101,900.

Metro area condominium and cooperative prices – covering changes in 61 metro areas – showed the national median existing-condo price was $209,200 in the fourth quarter, up 3.6 percent from the fourth quarter of 2014 ($202,000). Forty-four metro areas (72 percent) showed gains in their median condo price from a year ago; 17 areas had declines.

At the end of the fourth quarter, there were 1.79 million existing homes available for sale, which was below the 1.86 million homes for sale at the end of the fourth quarter in 2014. The average supply during the fourth quarter was 4.6 months – down from 4.9 months a year ago.

NAR President Tom Salomone, broker-owner of Real Estate II Inc. in Coral Springs, Florida, says the main challenge for buyers so far in 2016 continues to be insufficient supply. "With the exception of some metro areas with jobs heavily reliant in the energy sector, Realtors® say demand has held steady during the winter months," he said. "Serious buyers should be prepared to act fast, and remain in close communication with a Realtor® to deploy a negotiation strategy that fits their budget. Even in these typically slower winter months, listings in affordable price ranges are going under contract quickly."  Bend Oregon Real Estate

 

Regional Breakdown

 

Total existing-home sales in the Northeast increased 1.9 percent in the fourth quarter and are 7.3 percent above the fourth quarter of 2014. The median existing single-family home price in the Northeast was $254,500 in the fourth quarter, up 3.7 percent from a year ago.

In the Midwest, existing-home sales decreased 6.9 percent in the fourth quarter but are 5.2 percent higher than a year ago. The median existing single-family home price in the Midwest increased 6.0 percent to $171,600 in the fourth quarter from the same quarter a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the South declined 4.1 percent in the fourth quarter and are 0.6 percent below the fourth quarter of 2014. The median existing single-family home price in the South was $195,400 in the fourth quarter, 6.6 percent above a year earlier.

In the West, existing-home sales fell 10.4 percent in the fourth quarter but are 2.1 percent above a year ago. The median existing single-family home price in the West increased 8.4 percent to $323,600 in the fourth quarter from the fourth quarter of 2014.

Jan. 31, 2016

Bend Home Sales Steady December 2015

Home Sales Steady - Bend Oregon Homes

Pending home sales were mostly unchanged in December, but inched forward slightly, fueled by a large increase in the Northeast that outpaced declines in the other three major regions, according to the National Association of Realtors.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, crawled 0.1 percent to 106.8 in December from a downward trend revised 106.7 in November and is now 4.2 percent above December 2014 (102.5). The index has increased year-over-year for 16 consecutive months.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says contract activity closed out the year on stable footing but lost some momentum, except for in the Northeast. "Warmer than average weather and more favorable inventory conditions compared to other parts of the country encouraged more households in the Northeast to make the decision to buy last month," he said. "Overall, while sustained job creation is spurring more activity compared to a year ago, the ability to find available homes in affordable price ranges is difficult for buyers in many job creating areas. With homebuilding still grossly inadequate, steady price appreciation and tight supply conditions aren't going away any time soon."

According to Yun, although healthy labor market conditions will persuade more households to buy, it's possible overall demand could be somewhat curtailed in coming months. The stock market's sizeable losses since the start of the year and the effect slowing manufacturing activity is having in some areas — especially in the energy sector — could cause some to hold off on buying.

"The silver lining from the market turmoil in recent weeks is the fact that mortgage rates have slightly declined," says Yun. "Buyers looking to close on a home before the spring buying season begins may be rewarded with a mortgage rate at or below 4 percent."

Existing-homes sales this year are forecast to be around 5.34 million, an increase of 1.5 percent from 2015. The national median existing-home price for all of this year is expected to increase between 4 and 5 percent. In 2015, existing-home sales increased 6.5 percent and prices rose 6.8 percent.

Rents — which have far outpaced wages in recent years — are expected to slightly slow to 3.3 percent growth in 2016 from 3.6 percent a year ago. Multifamily housing starts are expected to reach 420,000 units this year, the highest level since 1987.  Rents in Bend, OR remain high.

The PHSI in the Northeast increased 6.1 percent to 97.8 in December, and is now 15.3 percent above a year ago. In the Midwest the index decreased 1.1 percent to 103.6 in December, but is still 3.6 percent above December 2014.

Pending home sales in the South declined 0.5 percent to an index of 119.3 in December but are 1.0 percent higher than last December. The index in the West decreased 2.1 percent in December to 97.5, but remains 3.4 percent above a year ago.

Search Bend Oregon Homes and Real Estate

Dec. 26, 2015

Real Estate Homes Sales Slowing

Bend Oregon Real Estate Sales

Existing-home sales dropped off considerably in November to the slowest pace in 19 months, but some of the decrease was likely because of an apparent rise in closing time frames that may have pushed some transactions into December, according to the National Association of Realtors. All four major regions saw sales declines in November.

Existing-home sales in the West dropped 13.9 percent to an annual rate of 990,000 in November, and are now 4.8 percent lower than a year ago. The median price in the West was $319,700, which is 8.3 percent above November 2014.

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, town homes, condominiums and co-ops, fell 10.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.76 million in November (lowest since April 2014 at 4.75 million) from a downward revised 5.32 million in October. After last month's decline (largest since July 2010 at 22.5 percent), sales are now 3.8 percent below a year ago — the first year-over-year decrease since September 2014.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says multiple factors led to November's sales decline, but the primary reason could be an anomaly as the industry adjusts to the new Know Before You Owe rule. "Sparse inventory and affordability issues continue to impede a large pool of buyers' ability to buy, which is holding back sales," he said. "However, signed contracts have remained mostly steady in recent months, and properties sold faster in November. Therefore it's highly possible the stark sales decline wasn't because of sudden, withering demand."

According to Yun, although Realtors are adjusting accordingly to the Know Before You Owe initiative, the main takeaway so far has been the need for longer closing times. According to NAR's Realtors® Confidence Index, 47 percent of respondents in November reported that they are experiencing a longer time to close compared to a year ago, up from 37 percent in October.

"It's possible the longer time frames pushed a latter portion of would-be November transactions into December," says Yun. "As long as closing time frames don't rise even further, it's likely more sales will register to this month's total, and November's large dip will be more."

The median existing-home price for all housing types in November was $220,300, which is 6.3 percent above November 2014 ($207,200). November's price increase marks the 45th consecutive month of year-over-year gains.

Total housing inventory at the end of November decreased 3.3 percent to 2.04 million existing homes available for sale, and is now 1.9 percent lower than a year ago (2.08 million). Unsold inventory is at a 5.1-month supply at the current sales pace, up from 4.8 months in October.

"Realtors® worked hard to prepare for Know Before You Owe, and we knew there would be some near-term challenges as the industry continues to adapt," says NAR President Tom Salomone, broker-owner of Real Estate II Inc. in Coral Springs, Florida. "Nonetheless, an early trend of longer lead times to closings is cause for concern. As Realtors® report issues with their transactions, we will continue to work with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to ensure as little disruption as possible to the business of real estate."

Properties typically stayed on the market for 54 days in November, a decrease from 57 days in October and below the 65 days in November 2014. Short sales were on the market the longest at a median of 91 days in November, while foreclosures sold in 47 days and non-distressed homes took 54 days. Thirty-seven percent of homes sold in November were on the market for less than a month.

The percent share of first-time buyers was at 30 percent in November, down from 31 percent both in October and a year ago. Despite first-time buyers' continued absence from the market, NAR's inaugural quarterly Housing Opportunities and Market Experience survey —released earlier this month — found that an overwhelming majority of current renters who are 34 years of age or younger want to own a home in the future (94 percent). The top reason given by renters for not currently owning was the inability to afford to buy.

According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage hovered below 4 percent for the fourth consecutive month but increased in November to 3.94 from 3.80 percent in October. A year ago, the average commitment rate was 4.00 percent.

"The Federal Reserve's decision this month to raise short-term rates is the first of many increases over the next couple of years," says Yun. "Although this first move will likely have minimal impact on mortgage rates, additional hikes will push borrowing costs to around 4.50 percent by the end of next year. With home prices expected to continue rising, wages and new home construction need to start increasing substantially to preserve affordability."

Matching the highest share since January, all-cash sales rose to 27 percent of transactions in November (24 percent in October) and are also up from 25 percent a year ago. Individual investors, who account for many cash sales, purchased 16 percent of homes in November (also the highest since January), up both from 13 percent in October and 15 percent a year ago. Sixty-four percent of investors paid cash in November.

Distressed sales — foreclosures and short sales — climbed to 9 percent in November, up from 6 percent in October but unchanged from a year ago. Seven percent of November sales were foreclosures and 2 percent were short sales. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 15 percent below market value in November (18 percent in October), while short sales were discounted 15 percent (8 percent in October).

Single-family and Condo/Co-op Sales

Single-family home sales dropped 12.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.15 million in November from 4.72 million in October, and are now 4.6 percent lower than the 4.35 million pace a year ago. The median existing single-family home price was $221,600 in November, up 6.6 percent from November 2014.

Existing condominium and co-op sales increased 1.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 610,000 units in November from 600,000 in October, and are now 1.7 percent above November 2014 (600,000 units). The median existing condo price was $211,400 in November, which is 4.7 percent above a year ago.

Regional Breakdown

November existing-home sales in the Northeast declined 9.2 percent to an annual rate of 690,000, but are still 1.5 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $254,800, which is 3.2 percent above November 2014.

In the Midwest, existing-home sales descended 15.4 percent to an annual rate of 1.10 million in November, and are now 2.7 percent below November 2014. The median price in the Midwest was $169,300, up 5.3 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the South decreased 6.2 percent to an annual rate of 1.98 million in November, and are now 5.7 percent below November 2014. The median price in the South was $189,400, up 6.3 percent from a year ago.

Bend Oregon Homes Sales