It’s hard to predict where the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic will hit hardest. Some areas, like the airlines, are obvious targets. But others, like the housing market, are hard to measure.
Right now, the Portland metro and Lake Oswego real estate markets are very active. Part of that could be the fallout from remote workers fleeing urban centers.
Case in point: One young couple who was paying $3,500 a month for a 600 square foot apartment in San Francisco just bought a home in Northeast Portland with separate office spaces to accommodate their working remote. A job change did not prompt the move; rather, it was the opportunity to work from anywhere. Given the choice, why would they continue to pay a premium in rent to be close to a job that no longer required that proximity?
They are not alone. A recent survey conducted by blind, an anonymous social network for professionals, indicated that two out of three tech workers in the Bay Area would consider leaving if given the option to work remotely. And of those, 36% would consider leaving the state to work elsewhere in the United States.
That’s good news for the Portland metro and Lake Oswego housing market. We have lots to offer expensive urban center escapees from just across our southern border.
As a result, we are seeing listed homes moving, and in some cases, instigating a bidding war. The young couple I mentioned earlier, lost out on a couple home choices because of the competition and finally landed one when they offered more than the asking price and beat out the other bidders.
In the 97034/97035 zip codes, of the 20 closed sales during the week of June 28 through July 5, 6 sold for over the asking price and 4 at the asking price, accounting for 50% of the sales. That ranges from a 1,260 square foot condo that sold for $280,000 ($5,000 over the asking price) and a 6,164 square foot single detached home that sold for $2,600,000 ($290,000 under the asking price).
I am also seeing a lot of movement within our current residents. Lake Oswegans are moving around to bigger homes, to get on the lake or get lake access, to get a bigger yard. As I mentioned in a previous blog, sheltering in place has caused homeowners and renters to evaluate their living situations. If they find they need a home office, better access to the outdoors, a yard big enough for their kids to play in, then they are taking advantage of low interest rates and making the move.
Of course, with COVID cases continuing to rise, we Realtors continue to implement safe practices when meeting with clients and showing homes. You can read more about that here.
I know it’s sometimes hard to find a silver lining to all the sacrifices we’ve had to make due to the coronavirus. One such one a new parent recently pointed out to me was the opportunity for both parents to spend more time with their newborn as they both work from home.
Another, I’d have to say, is the allure that suburbs like Lake Oswego hold in the eyes of workers who find themselves with the freedom to choose where they WANT to live, instead of where they HAVE to live because of their jobs.
If you are one of those potential relocators or if you know of one, please give me a call at 503.939.9801, check out my website, and or fill out the contact form below. As a Realtor for over 30 years, I’d love to put my experience to work for you in making your next move your best yet!