top of page

October Housing Market

What is the housing market like right now in Oregon overall right now? Home prices in Oregon were down almost 1% compared to last year, but in Bend they were up about 4.8%. On average, the number of homes sold in Oregon was down 12% year over year. There are reasons why there were fewer homes being sold and we will discuss those later on in our show today.

For a quick city by city break down for Central OR over the month of September

Bend’s 97701 median list price was $810k MAI 37 under last month’s 39, inventory at 97 listed homes with average 70 days on the market and 42% decreasing prices

Bend’s 97702 median list price was $830k MAI 37 under last month’s 38, inventory at 158 listed homes with average 89 days on the market and 55% decreasing prices

Bend’s 97703 median list price was $1.3millio MAI 35 about same last month, inventory at 153 listed homes with average 94 days on the market and 41% decreasing prices

Bend’s south end – Oregon Water Wonderland area 97707 median list price was $844k MAI 35 increase over last month’s 33. inventory at 56 listed homes with average 80 days on the market and 48% decreasing prices

La Pine median list price was $550k with a MAI 34. same as last month. inventory at 95 listed homes with average 132 days on the market and 47% decreasing prices

Prineville median list price was $490k MAI 31 about same last month, inventory at 108 listed homes with average 127 days on the market and 51% decreasing prices

Redmond’s median list price was $599k with the MAI 40 slight increase over last month, inventory at 194 listed homes with average 87 days on the market and 44% decreasing prices

Sisters median list price was $895k with the MAI 37 same as last month, inventory at 61 listed homes with average 115 days on the market and 56% decreasing prices

Madras median list price was $398k with the MAI 33 less than last month’s 36 inventory at 51 listed homes with average 109 days on the market and 27% decreasing prices

While we hear some economist say we are going to be seeing a drop in the economy after the first of the year, there are others saying things are different from the last Great Recession and there are positives in our housing market today.

First while nationwide overall home prices have slowed, the important thing to keep in mind is no one is buying a “national home”. All real estate markets are “local”. The Midwest and Northeastern states remain most affordable. While other desirable places remain steady, Central Oregon is one of those. Some of the most heated markets during the COVID19 pandemic are now seeing a falling off in pricing, but like I said earlier Bend has seen an overall 5% increase in prices year over year. Our more rural areas have not seen as much of an increase but have held steady overall.

One of the toughest challenges facing the home market is the overall lack of inventory. From year to year this is down 26%, meaning there are fewer listings from last year. The reason is mainly that people are not willing to relinquish the lower interest rate on their current home unless they have to move. Low listings, or inventory of homes for sale helped keep an upward pressure on home prices. As a result, homeowners today have near-record amounts of equity if they have been in the home for at least 4 years, some are showing good equity even in the last 2 years. And, that equity puts them in a much stronger position compared to the Great Recession and because people have more equity in their homes they are in a better position to weather a mild or soft recession. This is because that equity protects against foreclosure should they get behind in payments, and the lower interest rates that most are hanging onto have helped keep payments lower so they can afford to stay in their home.

During the Great Recession there were so many homes for sale which helped lead to the housing crisis, people couldn’t sell their homes for what the had in to them and many short sales and foreclosures on the market were what caused prices to fall dramatically. Today, there’s a shortage of inventory available overall, primarily due to years of underbuilding new homes.

Unsold inventory sits at a 2.6-months’ supply currently. There just isn’t enough inventory on the market for home prices to come crashing down like they did in 2008.

It was much easier to get a home loan during the leading to the 2008 housing crisis because banks had different lending standards, making it easy for just about anyone to qualify for a home loan or refinance an existing one. As a result, lending institutions took on much greater risk which led to mass defaults, foreclosures, and falling prices.

Today’s purchasers face increasingly higher standards from mortgage companies.

Because so many people are employed today, there’s less risk of homeowners facing hardship and defaulting on their loans. This helps put today’s housing market in a stronger position and reduces the risk of more foreclosures coming onto the market. So with less foreclosures flooding the market and lowering list prices and lower interest rates and more equity in their homes people we have a much better chance of weathering any upcoming storms in the market.

Even if homebuyers don’t see any immediate coming interest rate relief soon, there are many loan products out there that can help them get into a home. Let’s face it the biggest reasons of purchasing or not purchasing a home is the monthly mortgage payment, not the “cost” of the home overall but the cost of the day to day payment. That is why are seeing lenders coming up with new programs to support homebuyers, by buying down rates and basically buying down the interest to help with that monthly payment,

In spite of some of the national gloomy outlooks, buyers are finding ways to navigate this market. The market indicates that many are looking at new construction as these sales are increasing this spring. We see an upsurge of smaller square footage new homes making an upswing in our market.

This should give all homebuyers hope that the right house is out there, provided they keep looking

If you look at our Central Oregon market over all there are areas where affordability is available. While there is always a lot of talk about local affordability if you are willing to look a little deeper you will find what you are looking for and what you can afford in the housing market. There are work arounds if you are willing to be creative.

Very few of us have the advantage or the funds to start at the top. So where do we start?

We have suggestions for buyers who either want to get into our housing market for the first time or need or want to move to another neighborhood are:

· Look in the smaller more rural towns in Central OR….

· Be willing to drive a few extra miles for work…

· Decide that less may be better…

· Maybe less square footage home…

· Maybe smaller yard will work for now…

· Maybe less amenities…

· Look at a fixer upper ..

· A town home or condo is always good place to start..

· Look at a different type of loan like FHA or USDA.

There are many options for people that are determined to have their own home and we certainly have the resources to help you with this, from our own professional real estate team to mortgage lenders and financial counselors that can guide you in how to put your finances in order.

It is never too late or too early to become a homeowner!


bottom of page