Market Activity Report for Dec 26, 2016 – Jan 01, 2017

Happy New Year! And welcome 2017.
I hope you all have had wonderful holidays, but now that the festivities are over it is time to get back into the old grind. It is so difficult to get back to work after taking some time off for holidays, that’s for sure!

The market did slow down quite a bit, however I am willing to bet that in the coming weeks we’ll see activity pick up. Sure it can be cold out, and there are still people willing to look at houses in the snow, but at soon as it starts to warm up a bit we’ll see a lot of interest.

For now, the report is pretty small to cover our last week of the holidays.

Following is the breakdown for you according to RMLS:

NEW on Mkt (Dec 26, 2016 – Jan 01, 2017)

Address Type Price Bedrooms Bathrooms Sqft
86 KINGSGATE RD D104 CONDO 165,900 2 2 924
15256 BOONES WAY ATTACHED 424,500 2 2.5 1618
5844 BAY POINT DR DETACHED 824,900 3 2.5 3350
148 5TH ST DETACHED 1,625,000 4 3.5 3540

PENDING SALES (Dec 26, 2016 – Jan 01, 2017)

Address Type Price Bedroom Bathrooms DOM
47 EAGLE CREST DR CONDO 174,900 2 1 6
1694 BOONIEBRAE DR CONDO 275,000 2 1 19
37 TOUCH STONE DETACHED 445,000 4 3 7
6244 FROST LN DETACHED 480,000 4 3.5 164
18402 ANDUIN TER DETACHED 899,995 4 3.5 93

SOLD (Dec 26, 2016 – Jan 01, 2017)

Address Type List Price Close Price Sqft DOM
18630 WOOD DUCK ST DETACHED 385,000 406,000 1808 1
4400 COBB WAY DETACHED 565,000 577,240 1676 7
5530 DUNMIRE DR DETACHED 715,000 645,000 3040 187
4279 ALBERT CIR DETACHED 685,000 650,000 2768 125
4 GARIBALDI ST DETACHED 650,000 670,500 2430 7
6457 MCDUFF CT DETACHED 733,500 725,000 3193 10
2325 OAKHURST LN DETACHED 759,900 745,000 3627 153
13730 CAMEO CT DETACHED 1,175,000 1,162,000 3726 29
548 RIDGEWAY RD DETACHED 1,560,000 1,395,000 2830 455

Criteria: Homes in the 97034 and 97035 zip code, listed, pending or sold between the dates listed above as reported by the Regional Multiple Listing Service (RMLS). DETACHD refers to Single Family Detached Residence, MFG refers to manufactured housing, and ATTACHD refers to single-family residences with some portion of the structure attached to another property, but not constituting CONDO ownership. DOM stands for days on market, or the number of days from when the listing became active and when it received an acceptable offer, with CDOM standing for “cumulative days on market” accounting for “refreshed” listings.

Our Growing Population

If you have lived in the Portland metro area for the last 5 years or so you have seen first hand how much our population is growing. I know I have mentioned in previous blog posts the United Van Lines survey that comes out each year showing where in the United States people are moving to and from. Oregon for 2 years in a row has now been the #1 in-migration state in the country. So what you sense as you drive around is very, very real. I think about this a lot because it has a big impact on my job, and so I pay attention to others with thoughtful observations on the topic. This past week I had the pleasure of discovering an article in Portland Monthly on this very subject. Written by Randy Gragg, it layed out some really good observations and thoughts.

The first factor that is supporting our growth is our strong economy. With large employers like Nike, Intel, Adidas, and Columbia Sportswear, good jobs are available. Randy Gragg believes that this is going to continue and even expand. He attributes it to a new tech boom that is spurred on by the growing connectivity of our personal devices to the Internet. Think Fitbits, phones, even refrigerators and our cars, this is the economy of the “Internet of Things”.

Then there is the reality that 14,000 new apartments have been built since 2012, and 60 buildings at least 100′ tall are in the planning process, 15 of them are over 200′. I remember learning that the zoning for high rise buildings like exist in downtown Portland goes all the way South to about the Sellwood bridge. We are going to see more and more of the small, obsolete buildings in Portland being torn down and replaced with tall office, apartment, and condominium buildings.

The third factor is that we actually have the land to allow this development to take place. This land exists now within our urban growth boundary. Both San Francisco and Seattle are geopgraphically contained by water and therefore the opportunity for growth is limited. Not so in Portland. Portland is 3 times the size of San Francisce and 2 times the size of Seattle. Here’s a fun fact: SE 82nd Ave is the geographic center of Portland. This means that all of the land in the out East side is ripe for eventual development. The population of Portland is expected to exceed that of Seattle (the city, not the entire metro area) by 2025.

The fourth factor is climate change. The drought in the Southwest is a very significant factor right now. Suddenly all of our rain looks pretty attractive when the alternative is water rationing and the hardships of living in a drastically dry environment.

So what to do? Randy Gragg shares these ideas:

1) The metro area needs to concentrate on building affordable family housing. This means that instead of tearing down one old house and building one huge new house, we need to tear down one old house and build a tri or fourplex. This needs to be encouraged by offering incentives to builders and also by loosing up zoning restrictions.
2) The traffic is hear to stay, don’t fret about it. Randy used a pretty funny phrase. He says that if you complain about traffic it makes you a GBB, a Grumpy Baby Boomer. He points out that younger people increasingly don’t rely on cars but instead use car sharing, uber, bikes, and mass transit. I can attest to this. I see it in my younger clients. Think Copenhagen, Madrid, and the great cities of Europe. They are already doing this.
3) Let growth be our friend and realize that with growth will come opportunities. Development fees can encourage community improvements.
4) Do value historic preservation but let it be focused on buildings that have genuine value. Old does not necessarily mean valuable.
5) Encourage good urban design with emphasis put onto vibrant streets and public plazas. People need places to enjoy the community that they get out into. A great example of this is Millenium Plaza Park right here in LO.
6) Recognize that a lot of the growth that is going to happen is going to be on Portland’s East side. It is no longer the boonies, it is prime.

I realize that you are probably thinking “So, what does this have to do with Lake Oswego?”. It has a lot to do with Lake Oswego. All of this growth is going to press in upon our community. We too are growing and are going to continue to grow. I don’t see high rise buildings happening here, but I do see much larger buildings than have been built in the past. Look at the mixed use building currently under construction on the Wizer block. It is taller than any other building in our town. We are going to see more of this, not less. I will predict in this post that I do believe the Foothills Development will happen within the next 20 years. It is too well located near downtown LO and has easy access to what will likely become a commuting line into Portland on the current Trolly route. We are going to see lots of changes as we grow. I am not going to complain about it. I am instead going to pay attention to it and give imput when possible.

I’d love to know your thoughts,

Beautiful running routes in Lake Oswego

I hope you are all enjoying this great weather today, though in the past few days it has been seeming a little bi-polar with sun, then rain, then sun again.
With sunshine and pleasant temperature, I have found that I am more motivated to trail blaze my old running routs, and I have seen many other neighbors express the same motivation. I must say that Lake Oswego is one of the BEST cities I have ever found to be an active power-walker, hiker, or jogger in. My personal favorite route is to follow along Lakeview Blvd, up Summit (if you are looking for a good booty-kicker hill), and then down around Iron Mountain. For the distance I like to choose North Shore, McVey, and then South Shore (though it will be a while before I can enjoy that heck-of-a-trek).
Wherever you wander you will likely see the most beautiful of scenes with our lush greenery, glimpses of our glimmering lake, magnificent houses, and many friendly neighbors (I have never run into a person in LO that hasn’t offered up a friendly wave or a kind hello!)
So wherever your feet take you, I hope you get the chance to work up a healthy sweat in our activity-friendly city.

Tree City USA

“The wonder is that we can see these trees and not wonder more”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

This year Lake Oswego is celebrating 26 years as a designated Tree City USA! This is given to cities that demonstrate a strong commitment to managing and caring for trees by the National Arbor Day Foundation. With Arbor week being April 5-11, it seem appropriate to do some bragging about the beautiful trees in Lake Oswego.

trees 002The Natural Resources Advisory Board for the city designates significant trees in the city as “Heritage Trees”. Four new trees are being given this designation this year: two sycamores at 16584 Roosevelt Avenue, a giant sequoia at 14145 Redwood Ct, and a madrone at Oswego Pioneer Cemetary on Stafford Road. That brings the total number of trees with this designation to 35.

In honor of Arbor Week, the city has got some pretty fun events planned:

Free the Trees is a concept that began in Springbrook Park. The idea is that while it is hard to clear all of the English Ivy out of the Park all at once, if it’s done gradually it gets done over time. English Ivy, left to grow unchecked, kills trees. People who take walks through the park were asked trim and remove the ivy around one tree while on their walk. It worked! If you would like to join in the effort, you can get more information by contacting Babs Hamachek at

trees 003Stafford Grove Tree Planting & Poetry Reading. Thursday, April 9, 1:30-2:30, 1061 Sunningdale Rd. Join the Forest Hills/First Edition Neighborhood Association in planting a tree, and then listen to former Oregon Poet Laureate Paulann Peterson reading poetry.

Barnyard Tales & Heritage Tree Walk. Wednesday, April 8, 10-11am at Luscher Farm, 125 Rosemont Road. Lynne Bacon, a renowned storeyteller, will be holding a story time on the farm followed by a visit to the Heritage Trees that are located on the farm. Space is limited, so you need to register, although it is a free event. Register on line at, use activity code #10646.

Blossoming Tree Craft. Saturday, April 9, 2-4pm, LO Library, 706 4th St. Make beautiful blossoming tree crafts. For all ages of tree lovers.

I personally have 4 HUGE trees in my yard, 3 firs and a glorious English walnut. They really enhance the feeling of sanctuary that I feel about my home.

-Joyce Kilmer
“I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree…….”

As always, thanks for reading the blotter,