The good news: Housing is headed up, up, up! Especially in desirable Northwest regions such as Seattle, Portland, and Central Oregon, where prices have shown the most recovery, residents can expect housing prices to continue to climb, while interest rates stay near record-breaking lows.
The bad news? With housing prices increasing at rates around 10 percent and financing tighter than previous decades, home affordability may become the new housing problem. And, as the market becomes more competitive, inventories decrease, and good bargains become more difficult to find, buyers can expect more competition in obtaining the home of their dreams.
That is why more home builders in the Pacific Northwest are staying busy. Buyers are realizing they can get the exact home and location they want, without the competitive bidding process involved with existing home inventory.
More buying, selling and price stability made 2012 a better year in Central Oregon real estate after several difficult ones.
The year “shaped up to be a very good year for the whole real estate market,” said Michael Warren, president-elect of the Central Oregon Association of Realtors.
He says 2012 was a stabilizing year, and throughout Central Oregon, Bend seems to grow faster than other communities.
According to Trulia, an online residential real estate site, Bend showed an average price per square foot increase of 5.4 percent in 2012, coupled with a median home price increase of 9.4 percent.
Bend, Oregon, in particular, is outpacing the growth in many regions, but places such as Portland, Oregon (where unemployment is shrinking and inventories are low) are also poised for quick housing market recovery as well.
Buyers are realizing they need to keep up with the new pace of the market. The sluggish market of yesterday is in the past and these indicators are sending a message to buyers that prices are rising and homes are moving a little faster. Smart buyers that are in the market will make their move soon, while interest rates are low and prices are still good.