According to the New York Times article published yesterday (New Indications Housing Recovery is Underway), there is indication of a significant recovery in the housing market.
This article does point out some trends that apply to Coastal real estate such as an increasing inventory in most price ranges and a reduction in the number of distressed properties on the market. It alludes to a slight increase in sale prices after steep declines over the past 6 years. This is not quite true on the Coast. Over the past 2 years our market has seen a decline in values of closed properties of 13%. This is in contrast to the historical figures up to 2006 when we consistently saw average annual increases of 15%.
What does this mean to home Buyers in the Coastal market? Depends on the objective. If you are an investor the competition is stiff for homes and condos that can be easily placed in the rental market. The demand for clean affordable rentals continues to outstrip the supply. For homes to be used as primary residences the inventory is fair to good.
Oregon coast homes priced between $190,000 to $250,000, are being caught in “bidding wars” that have not been common since 2004-2005. New construction is still at a standstill on the Coast as builders wait for cash Buyers prior to breaking ground, and bare land is in ample supply. For Investors coming in with cash, excellent buys are available. For primary coastal residences and beach homes, the selection is fair to good if the Buyer can come pre-qualified for a new loan with good credit.
This is overall a great time to invest in Coastal real estate no matter what the objective. After all, there is only one Oregon Coast. We love living here – so might you.
During your search for a home on the Oregon Coast, have you thought about purchasing a bank owned property?
People have a fairly accurate impression that great bargains in the form of deeply discounted prices can be found within this category. While generally true, bank owned properties present several unique challenges. Read on to become an informed buyer.
The big challenge is getting through the inspection process. Under Oregon law, financial institutions are exempt from the Disclosure requirements of all other Sellers. This means that the sale is always an “as is where is” situation. The bank will not negotiate (pay for) any needed repairs. So the prudent Buyer will need to be prepared to pay for all inspections whether the sale succeeds or fails.
The inspection process is not so simple as most bank owned properties are the result of foreclosure. The best managed properties have been winterized to prevent freezing water pipes and all utilities have been disconnected. In order to perform an inspection of all the functions within the home, water, electricity and gas service (if appropriate) must be reconnected. In some service areas, this can be done for a nominal fee to the Buyer. Again this is a Buyer cost.
Assuming that all the inspections pass on the home’s structure, utilities and mechanicals, the other big factor is an assessment of the general condition of the home. Many foreclosure actions result in damage or removal of fixtures by the departing property owner. For example, it is not at all unusual to find everything remotely portable stripped from the home. This includes kitchen cabinets, appliances, plumbing fixtures, light fixtures and even flooring. In some cases the departing owner will do extensive damage to walls, doors, windows and remaining fixtures as a way of “getting back” at the bank for taking the home. Some of the costs to repair or replace may be reflected in the offering price with a cover letter to the bank with written bids for the work.
The final hurdle in the purchase of a foreclosed property is negotiating with the bank itself. The bank will demand proof of pre-approval if a new loan is being obtained for the purchase, as well as proof of adequate funds to close.
The brokers in our Newport and Seal Rock offices can guide you through the sometimes time consuming and frustrating process of buying a bank owned home along the Central Oregon Coast. We want you to get the financial advantages, so our job is to help you avoid all the possible pitfalls along the way.
Pity the poor novice when they begin to try the native sport of clamming in Waldport, Newport, or elsewhere on the beautiful central Oregon coast. Like the fellow pictured above they often attack the clams with their shovel rather than using the time honored ‘stealth’ approach. You see, when you walk out the front door of your Oregon coast beachfront property, more likely than not you will be the only person on the beach. This means that the clams are all yours.
The photo, above, shows a damaged Razor clam. These delicious treats actually start burrowing when you start digging, so an experienced Oregon clammer will first spot the telltale dimple in the clean white sand. Then they will dig to the side of the dimple, not over it. Then the race for the clam starts. Can you dig faster than a clam can burrow? Oddly enough, probably not. That must be why they are in such plentiful supply along the Oregon coast. In fact, all of the Lincoln County beaches are able to supply the presistant clammer with a goodly supple of this delicious bivalve mollusk.
Although many restaurants claim to make their chowder exclusively from Razor clams, you will find that your own homemade, locally caught, chowder will win the raves of visitors to your new Oregon coast home with beach views.
Lately those looking for Oregon Coast real estate, particularly those looking for beachfront property in Newport and Yachats, have noticed something new. Poetry groups, writers workshops, and reading clubs have been springing up like proverbial mushrooms after a spring rain. It seems that retired folks actually enjoy snuggling up in front of a woodstove or fireplace and digging into the classics they always promised themselves they would read one day. This has led to groups such as ‘Writers on the Edge’ who are hosting authors who read their own works. The younger set has even organized ‘poetry slams’ which are becoming quite the scene on weekends.
No one is sure if it’s the gentle rain or the dramatic coastal landscapes which are behind this movement. All the thriving booksellers are sure of one thing: business is up – way up. Sitting in a friend’s coastal condo last week, I remarked that this summer has been unusually mild. She was assembling yet another bookcase from Ikea to hold her increasing library of book purchases. She wiped the hair out of her eyes smiled and said, “Good, I’ve got a lot of reading to do and this is absolute heaven for a book lover like me.” I looked out her front window at the scudding clouds and the crashing surf and had to agree.
You have to look at a map to understand that you have to travel east from Newport to reach San Diego. Real estate in Newport, like the rest of the country, has an west-to-east weather pattern. The problem (and the delight) about Lincoln County Real Estate is that the mighty Pacific Ocean is our neighbor. And it is this neighbor which controls all the weather. Homes directly in the teeth of the wild winter storms need special protection from the elements. Luckily the contractors and building suppliers are very familiar with the peculiar home maintenance needs of the local population.
Just a few miles inland the weather takes a dramatic turn with warmer temperatures settling over the towns of Toledo and Siletz. Summer temperatures inland are ofter in the 80’s and 90’s when the real estate along the coast may be struggling to reach 70 degrees.
Homes facing the south and west, along the coast, are the best candidates for solar heating and cooling. But the dramatic views of any coastal property are what most home buyers seek. So remember to look at the inland communities if weather is a primary concern. But really, the Pacific Ocean with it’s magnificent sunsets and panoramic vistas is the true main attraction.
There is a beach that many consider the most beautiful on the Central Oregon Coast. It is Ona Beach and is located about 10 miles south of Newport.
Yet another in a string of beautiful public parks, Ona beach has some surprises for the first time visitor. The parking area is located just off highway 101 below a residential area named Makai. The beach is usually deserted although the picnic area next to the parking lot is very popular.
A paved trail takes you along and eventually over Beaver Creek across an arched footbridge and out on to the white sand beach.
Beaver creek cuts the beach in half but also offers hours of fun for the little ones to play in the 6 inches of warm water well away from the pounding surf. This is the beach for sandcastles, clamming, and agate hunting. Campfires are legal and a sunset weenie roast can be the perfect end to a magical day at the Oregon Coast.
There is a trail in Yachats, Oregon that was deeded to the citizens after a lengthy court proceeding.
It is an old ‘road’ from the late 1800’s and is the most pleasant and famous stroll in southern Lincoln County. Today it is no more than a dirt trail that hugs the Pacific coast only a few feet from the tidepools and thundering surf. It can be bicycled, walked, and has even hosted folks who are in wheelchairs.
Cove after cove lie in front of beautiful Oregon Coast properties. The trail has access points to all of them as well as offering some fairly productive fishing holes. Most folks start the walk at the parking area at the mouth of the Yachats river where there is free and public parking. The trail is accessed a few steps from your car and this experience will put you instantly face to face with the mighty Pacific. For ‘storm watchers’ it doesn’t get any better than this.
Saturday December 19, 2009, 11am – 3pm
Sunday, December 20th, 11am – 4pm
With everything available online these days, people frequently ask, “Why should we hire a real estate agent?” They are curious if they couldn’t buy or sell a home through the web without a licensed broker. While some non-brokered transactions work out, many don’t. Here are 5 reasons why you should consider hiring a professional real estate broker:
- Education & Experience You don’t need to know everything about buying and selling real estate if you hire a real estate professional who does. A good broker will only bring qualified buyers to your home if it is for sale. On the buyer’s side, he or she will spend time learning about what you are looking for in a home and comb through the MLS listings to find places that are worth your time to review.
- Neighborhood and Regulatory Knowledge Our agents know every neighborhood on the Central Oregon Coast. They can identify comparable sales for you, in addition to providing you with information on the community. For example, you may know that a home down the street was on the market for $359,000, but your broker will know all the details — if it had any upgrades and that it ultimately sold for $297,000 after 93 days on the market and two price drops.The Central Oregon Coast offers a multitude of neighborhoods and locations each with it’s unique appeal. Our properties range from the right on the beach ocean fronts to mountain vista homes. In between are many on rivers, bays and lakes. Each home or building site is evaluated for view, with ocean front, bay front and river front being generally higher in value.Along with the great views are the challenges. Anywhere near the water there may be building restrictions and cautions. Lower lying areas may be subject to periodic flooding and require special home owners insurance or may be considered not build able by County regulations. The closer to the ocean the higher the maintenance of the home due to high winds and salt air. Certain geological hazards do exist in certain areas, such as slides caused be unstable ground. The flood issues and geological hazards are clearly identified by County and State officials. Getting timely and accurate information to a Buyer is the job of a well trained real estate broker. Water services are another area of concern. The Coastal cities all have regulated water systems. In unincorporated areas between the larger towns, community water systems serve and are monitored much like the municipal providers. Water wells are common in areas not served by public systems. These vary in style, cost and reliability. Again it is the job of your broker to help determine the quality and function of the well through the use of professional inspectors. Larger towns have municipal sewage treatment plants to serve the residents. The other 40% of homes in Lincoln County are served by on-site-sewage disposal systems (septic). This is one of the greater challenges here on the Coast. Soil conditions, square footage of land and topography all play a part. Your real estate broker practicing on the Coast is well versed in the regulations and is a key player in developing accurate information on septic systems using licensed contractors. Local knowledge is critically important when Buying or Selling on the Oregon Coast.
- Price Guidance Contrary to popular belief, brokers do not select prices for sellers or buyers. Instead, a broker guides his or her client to make the right choices for themselves. Selling agents will provide buyers with all the data (average per square foot cost of similar homes, median and average sales prices, average days on market and ratios of list-to-sold prices, etc) to help them choose a price. Then based on market supply, demand and the conditions, the broker will devise and discuss a negotiation strategy.
- Negotiation Skills Top producing brokers negotiate well because, unlike most buyers and sellers, they are skilled at removing themselves from the emotional aspects of the transaction. Good brokers are not messengers, delivering buyer’s offers to sellers and vice versa. They are professionals who are trained to present their client’s case in the best light and agree to hold client information confidential.
- Paperwork Today’s purchase agreements run 10 pages or more. That does not include the federal- and/or state-mandated disclosures nor disclosures dictated by local custom. One tiny mistake or omission could land you in court or cost you thousands.
Learn more about how Windermere West Coast Properties approaches selling real estate on the Oregon coast. And get in touch with any questions you may have.