My Weekly Central Oregon Real Estate Blog

Every Wednesday morning, I post a market report for Central Oregon with information about homes, market trends, and real estate news. Register today, or contact Reed for immediate assistance. 

May 24, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report | May 24, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report for May 24, 2023

Inventory of single-family homes in Deschutes County increased eighteen to 667 this week, while Crook and Jefferson Counties were flat. Deschutes County homes for sale are up 12.7% from last year, nowhere near enough inventory to dampen prices significantly. Price reductions of the actively listed homes in Deschutes and Crook County are in the low four percent range and only -2.6% in Jefferson County. There were five pending sales in Jefferson County, down two from last week, and ten in Crook County, up four. Nevertheless, Deschutes County had a robust eighty pending transactions, up five from last week. 


Deschutes County Properties


Mortgage rates have been increasing lately, with the 30-year fixed-rate national average yesterday afternoon at 7.01%. On April 17, 2023, the national average was 6.68%, a likely contributor to only 46 closed transactions this week. However, only 525 homes were for sale on April 12, 2023, another contributing factor to the lower closed sales. Despite the high rates, only fourteen of the forty completed transactions this week were cash deals. 


Many experts incorrectly assumed that the last Fed Open Market Committee meeting would have paused rate increases, followed by a pivot to lower rates. Instead, as we now know, rates increased by 25 basis points. There is a strong chance that the Fed will pause rate hikes at the next meeting on June 14, but the likelihood of a pivot over the next four meetings of 2023 is increasing low. Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kaskari recently said, "What's important is not signaling we are done...(and we) may need to go north of 6%." St. Louis Fed President Jim Bullard said, "I think we are going to have to grind higher with the policy return inflation to target. I'm thinking two more moves this year...I've advocated sooner than later." If either of these thoughts becomes a reality, my prediction of rates in the high 5% range by Labor Day was, unfortunately, incorrect. JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon said, "Everybody should be prepared for higher rates from here...(the Fed) could push rates as high as 7%." The rates mentioned in these quotes refer to the overnight rate, which is currently at 5.25%. Using Kaskari's number would indicate another 75 basis point increase and 175 basis points using Jamie Dimon's prediction. If these narratives become a reality, there is a strong chance mortgages could approach 8% by year-end. 


Crook County Properties


Under normal market conditions, higher rates would slow sales, and the inventory of available homes would naturally increase. Unfortunately, normal set sail long ago. Homeowners are financially strong today, with many sitting on 3% or less mortgage rates. As we have experienced for the last few years, today's market is supply constrained, not awash with buyers. The active buyers have the means to purchase under these conditions and are motivated to make Central Oregon home. As a result, prices have remained firm. There have been more multiple-offer scenarios, but the bidding wars of 2022 have dissipated, with most multiple offers resulting in contracts at the asking price or slightly above.


Comparing the year-to-date numbers of 2022 and 2023 illustrates our supply-constrained market perfectly. In 2022 through May 24, there were 1732 sales of single-family homes in Deschutes County at a median sale price of 690k and five days on the market. In 2023 through this morning, we have closed 1080 sales at a median of 635k and twenty-seven days on the market. In normal conditions, a collapse in sales volume of 37.6% would translate into significantly increased days on the market and robust price reductions. However, the 55k price reduction indicated in the YTD comparisons hardly matters due to substantially higher mortgage rates. Using the median sale price of 2022 and 2023 and mortgage interest rates from March of each year of 4.86% and 6.58%, respectively, shows an increase in monthly payments of $400 for this year. 


Jefferson County Properties


It would be easy to interpret my report this morning as "doom and gloom," but there are always opportunities in turbulent economic conditions. Moreover, each transaction has unique factors that need individual analysis. Lenders are getting more creative with the programs available as rates increase. Cash buyers are in an even stronger position than in the last few years of competing with well-qualified buyers accessing historically low mortgage rates. The dearth of inventory has disproportionately impacted the lower price points, but many sellers are offering owner-carried contracts to sell in these conditions.


The takeaways apply in any market but are especially important today:

1) Stay in close contact with a responsive lender that can tailor a loan program to fit your needs.

2) View real estate with an extended timeframe, and don't get hung up on short-term volatility.

3) Ensure your real estate agent has local knowledge of the markets and lenders that can help.


Deschutes County over $2M


Unfortunately, there are no indications that a wave of homes will hit the market, bringing prices down substantially. Also, particularly for younger buyers and first-time homeowners, do not buy thinking you need to check every box! While it is true that people are owning homes longer than in years past, the likelihood that you will have the same mortgage or home for thirty years is extremely low. Getting a "foot in the door" now will provide options in the future that waiting will not. 


Whatever your situation, I have experienced it and have the expertise to help you make an educated move. So whether you need to buy or sell this summer or plan a post-retirement move in five years, I can help. Or, use the many tools on my website to track the market, like Market TrendsMarket Reports, or the Home Valuation tool. You will not find a more comprehensive website or weekly Central Oregon housing market analysis!


Click here for the full report.

May 17, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report | May 17, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report for May 17, 2023

Thankfully, inventory in Central Oregon continues to climb, with 649 single-family homes listed this morning in Deschutes County. Homes listed in Crook County were up by two to 117, and Jefferson County was flat at sixty-four. Conversely, the median price reduction for pending sales remains low, with Deschutes County at -3.82%, Crook at -3.74%, and Jefferson at -2.74%. Due to the smaller number of transactions, median days for pending properties change significantly in Crook and Jefferson County, making the metric less meaningful. However, in Deschutes County, where there were seventy-five pending sales last week, the days listed before securing a contract dropped to twelve. This solid activity sits against 30-year fixed-rate mortgages at 6.69%.


Market analysts and investors may be sharpening their pencils when looking at properties at today's financing rates, but most buyers focus on monthly payments. Similar mortgage rates slowed sales significantly in late 2022 and early 2023, while today, activity is robust. What changed? Likely there are several contributing factors:

  1. Seasonality significantly impacts sales volume from now through the end of summer, with new residents looking to make Central Oregon home.
  2. Many buyers assume that peak mortgage rates are behind us or at least not climbing further.
  3. If buyers can afford today's payment, there is every reason to believe that future costs can be reduced with a refinance when rates decline.

Many buyers have grown accustomed to where rates are today and do not want to wait any longer. 


I regularly speak with people concerned about the economy, which has been flashing signs of recession for several months. However, even if we are in a recession today, that does not necessarily mean housing prices in Central Oregon will decline. For example, a handful of analysts I followed late last year predicted a flat 2023 and a decline in 2024. While there is no doubt sales volume is down, constrained supply is partly to blame. However, today's strong sales, firm (and rising) prices, and forecasted population growth are propelling this season beyond predictions. Therefore, with limited supply and the other factors I mentioned, I do not expect a housing downturn in 2024. Yes, another prediction! Candidly, even a casual observer can see the growth and real estate trends in Central Oregon.


It is no secret that many new residents coming to Central Oregon are leaving metropolitan west coast cities. In addition, work-from-home opportunities have opened up the possibility of living where many used to vacation. While there is no shortage of mountain towns, Central Oregon is unique. Our winters are far milder than many smaller, higher-elevation towns; we have an excellent regional airport and are in close driving proximity to Portland, Seattle, or even northern California. As you get deeper into the Inter-Mountain West, many of Central Oregon's attributes do not apply. Housing is always susceptible to price swings, as we saw in the second half of last year. Although, over the long haul, very few assets consistently perform as well as homes in desirable areas. 


Lately, I have gotten marketing material praising the benefits of using artificial intelligence for everything from writing property descriptions to social media posts. While I have no doubt AI will play a more significant role in everything we do (whether we like it or not!) I assure you my reports will always be written and researched by me—every Wednesday morning. The idea that I would use AI to describe a home or write about market conditions sounds outlandish. However, we all see how homogenized most marketing campaigns are, and I expect that trend to continue with AI. Researching the market, staying current on the economy, and growing my list of trusted lenders, home inspectors, and other resources is a job I take seriously. You will not get cookie-cutter service from me! On that note, before the end of the week, property detail pages on my website will now include taxes and HOA fees! The tax and HOA information are below the property descriptions, mortgage calculator, schools, and property walk score—coming soon!


Click here for the full report.

May 15, 2023

Best Breweries in Bend Oregon 2023

Bend is a great place to live if you are a fan of craft beer. Every weekend you can try a different local brewery, from the large national brand Deschutes to a small local favorite. Next time you are trying to decide where to grab a cold one near Bend, check out this list.

Deschutes BreweryBest Breweries in Bend Oregon 2023

Names for Deschutes County, Deschutes Brewery has become a large brewery that ships its beers around the nation. They began as a small craft brewery serving the Bend community in 1988, selling 310 barrels of beer that year. Now they sell over 255,000 barrels each year, but their Bend location continues to serve the community. Enjoy a tour of their brewery or relax in the tasting room to find your new favorite brew.

Bridge 99 Brewery

Started by best friends Trever Hawman and Rod Kramer, Bridge 99 Brewery uses eco-friendly methods and locally sourced ingredients to craft diverse beers and ales. The overwhelmingly positive response to their quest to create more drinkable microbeer allowed them to quickly move into a larger space, complete with tasting room. In addition to enjoying their delicious beers, you can feel good about your choice knowing the spent grains are taken to local ranchers, rather than the local landfill.

Silver Moon Brewing

Silver Moon Brewing began as a supplier for home brewing supplies, but transitioned into brewing its own craft beers to serve the public as Bend's third local brewery. Plan to taste a couple of beers and stay awhile, enjoying live music from local artists. The outdoor space is laid back and welcoming, with a big fire pit in the center of the patio to keep things cozy no matter the time of year.

Broken Top Bottle Shop

Broken Top Bottle Shop is more than just a brewery. They offer delicious beers on tap, of course, but they also serve satisfying food to pair with your selections and feature a store that sells just about every beverage you might want, including bottled and canned beer, cider, mead, sake, wine, and nonalcoholic beverages.

Their restaurant is an award-winning place to enjoy an innovative spin on a classic pub food, like the fennel-dusted pretzel with pesto cheese dip, pork belly bahn mi, or cauliflower shwarma. The outdoor patio area is dog friendly so you can enjoy your evening out with your canine family members, too.

Bend Ale Trail

While not technically a brewery, you should know about the Bend Ale Trail. This self-guided tour is the perfect way to spend a weekend day exploring all the best beer spots in Bend. Of course you won't complete the trail in a day, but you can definitely make a dent in it!

Download the app and make your way through the list of breweries, restaurants, and shops to check out. You will even find out about non-beer drinks you might love, like hard kombuchas and meads that are locally made and garnering some attention.

Are you looking for homes for sale in Bend and wondering what it's like to live there? Contact us any time to learn more about making Bend your home.

Posted in Bend
May 10, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report | May 10, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report for May 10, 2023

Pending sales have increased in Crook, Deschutes, and Jefferson Counties since my report last week. Jefferson County has seen the most significant pending sale volume since I started tracking the county statistics last July, with eleven pending sales. Crook County also had eleven pending sales and a median price reduction of only -1.23%. Pending sales in Deschutes County increased by sixteen to seventy-six, with thirteen median days on the market and a median price reduction of -3.55%. However, inventory increased in Deschutes County to 611 single-family homes, an increase of forty-one from the previous week. Crook County's active listings increased by two, and Jefferson County decreased by seven. Growing inventory in Deschutes County is a seasonal, welcomed trend, while Crook and Jefferson County housing supply remains abnormally constrained.

With the national average for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage increasing to 6.68% yesterday afternoon, assuming the housing market is slowing would be reasonable. However, Central Oregon real estate left reasonable in the dust three years ago and is moving quickly. With rare exceptions, testing a seller's price results in getting an offer rejected while another buyer gets the home. Additional time searching for a home will always present a different mix of properties, but finding a lower price for comparable homes has not materialized. In the large majority of situations, waiting results in paying more. 

Large West Coast cities are the source of a large majority of transplants to Central Oregon, and the policy and quality of life trends in those areas seem to be driving more and more people to the greener pastures of Deschutes County and the surrounding communities. Last week, California defaulted on a $20B unemployment insurance loan from the Federal Government. Instead, it elected to pass the repayment costs to businesses, increasing the unemployment tax from .6% to .9%, likely accelerating the trend of companies closing stores and leaving the state. While the large corporations leaving California are not coming to Central Oregon, situations like this and many other policy decisions have driven those that can work from home to our communities. There is no indication of slowing buyer demand.

With higher mortgage interest rates, it would be reasonable to assume that out-of-town buyers are flooding the market with cash offers, but of the sixty-four closed sales in Deschutes County over the last seven days, only twenty were cash sales. Buyers financed the remaining forty-four deals with conventional, FHA, or VA loans. 

Even though I have correctly predicted all of the last ten Federal Reserve Rate increases, I have no unique ability to guess what might be up its sleeve over the remainder of 2023. But I won't let that stop me from sharing my opinion! I've read and heard many arguments on the street that the Fed will pivot toward lower rates and that inflation is under control. Any regular readers of this report can guess I don't see it this way. So I'll leave inflation alone and let you use your grocery and gas bills to determine. However, I believe a pause is a more likely scenario than a pivot. While it may be possible that a slight softening of the overnight rate occurs before year-end, I would not count on a significant reversal in Fed policies and a return to the zero interest rate policies of the recent past. Instead, I believe that a pause and stability in Fed policies will positively impact mortgage interest rates, with a possibility of high five percent mortgages after labor day. A 50 basis point rate decrease will undoubtedly help buyer affordability, but this is not the windfall many are counting on. Buyers' willingness this spring to finance at today's rates and prices indicates what to expect in the months ahead. 

The primary driver of Central Oregon buyers is quality of life and the desire to be here long-term. Although, no buyer wants to purchase in a declining market. At the high end, many home sales appear to be an investment decision and a lifestyle choice. Educated buyers would not be snapping up high-end properties in anticipation of a decline in value. Two issues are keeping our prices firm, 1) Central Oregon has a limited pool of available homes divided between smaller areas and price points, and 2) many buyers are leaving areas with equal or more expensive real estate. Many of today's buyers are undaunted by our prices. 

While the sales gap from 2022 to 2023 continues to narrow, it likely won't invert until late in 2023 and may not surpass last year. Looking at Deschutes County YTD sales, the median price in 2023 is 635k, down from 694k in 2022. The average sale price went from 831k to 769k. Home prices today have stabilized, and there is a strong chance that the price gap from last year will narrow by year-end. Median and average mean little when looking at individual properties; sellers are in a strong position today. Testing home prices with low offers opens the door for other buyers circling the same property. Unfortunately, a low offer gets shopped to other potential buyers who know what price to beat to get the home. Multiple offers on a single property are increasing, and the best odds to get the home you want come from a strong offer upfront. 

To quote Jim Carey, "So you're saying there's a chance!"

All kidding aside, contact me anytime you need help navigating our real estate market. 

Click here for the full report.

May 8, 2023

What Home Buyers Should Learn From A Home Inspection

There can be a lot of information gleaned from a home inspection. These can be a stressful part of the home buying or selling process. It is easy to be overwhelmed when the report is lengthy and looks to have a lot of potential issues noted by the inspector. It is important to gain as much knowledge as possible before you make your next home purchase. Before you get started, take a look at some of the key things to learn regarding your home inspection process.

What To Learn From A Home InspectionWhat Home Buyers Should Learn From A Home Inspection

Inspectors Are Not Experts

Your home inspector is not an expert on all areas and systems in your home. Their job is to identify problems in your home, but they cannot always report in detail what needs to be done to repair the problem. You must recognize this and then get information from those that have expertise in the specified issue. This means that you want to consult an electrician for any electrical and a roofer or plumber for those issues as well. It is worth it to pay extra for their service to give you a deeper understanding of home repair.

Watch For Issues You Want To Avoid

You want to look at your inspection with a good understanding of how much work and money you are willing to put into the property to fix it. This all depends on what you are purchasing the home for and if you feel you are getting a good deal compared to what needs to be put into it. Buying a home is a huge investment so do not be afraid to ask for repairs or credit to help you fund the repairs yourself after the purchase is complete.

Attend The Inspection

You must go to the inspection and ask all of the questions you might have. A large inspection report can be overwhelming and if you attend the inspection you will be able to discuss some of this with the inspector to get an idea of what you need to look deeper into and get their recommendations.

Final Walk Through

Your final walk-through is very important. Even if your inspection report seems to be good with minimal repairs, you want to be aware of the condition of the home right before the finalized purchase. If the home is sitting vacant it is possible that a bug infestation or other repairs could come up after the inspection and before losing. You want to make sure that everything you agreed upon is in place and repaired correctly.

Second Opinions

If you are a seller receiving large repair requests from the buyer, you are entitled to get a second or third opinion before you agree to anything. This will help you have a better understanding of what is reasonable for the buyer to ask for and where you can accommodate their request and agree for the purchase contract to move forward.

In Conclusion

For more information on the home-buying process, contact us. We would be happy to help you with any of your Bend Oregon real estate needs. 

Posted in Articles
May 3, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report | May 3, 2023

Single-family homes for sale in Deschutes County increased this week by the most significant amount in 2023 to 570, up forty-seven from last Wednesday. The increase is welcome news to buyers working with constrained supply and up from this time last year. However, on May 25, 2022, the inventory of Deschutes County homes was 591, and the skewed comparisons of our year-to-date data are narrowing rapidly. For example, this week last year, the median list price was 827k compared to 841k this morning. On July 6, 2022, the median list price in Deschutes County dropped below 800k for the first time and dropped below 700k in October. On March 1, 2023, the median list price moved above 700k again, breaking 800k on April 19, 2023. The likelihood of a surge in inventory before the end of the peak summer selling season that floods the market and brings prices down is nearly impossible. In fact, despite the increase of available homes for sale this week, I expect prices to remain firm or increase through the summer. Although, most of the price increases reflect more expensive homes hitting the market rather than an overall increase in home prices. 

Twenty-two single-family homes are listed in Deschutes County under 400k and forty-eight under 500k, providing options for many buyers. In a volatile mortgage market, yesterday's average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 6.58%. Later this morning, the Federal Reserve will likely raise rates another 25 basis points, but the accompanying narrative to the hike will be the meat of the story. If Jerome Powell sends a dovish message regarding future rate hikes, the markets will most likely respond favorably in expectation of the pivot everyone has waited for. On the other hand, if Powell shows continued concern about the pace of inflation and indicates more rate increases are necessary, we could see buyers pulling back further as affordability in lending decreases. While I do not expect a hawkish Fed, anything can happen. Today's Fed narrative will be the most pivotal point of the 2023 selling season and set the tone for the remainder of the year. A pivot at the next Fed meeting in mid-June or a pause should keep buyer demand strong, while another increase could roil markets and further slow sales. Year-to-date sales are 881, compared to 1444 in 2022, and it is doubtful we will match last year's robust total sales of 4130. 

As I mentioned last week, projections expect significant growth in Deschutes County and Central Oregon through 2030. If monetary policy eases, there is a strong chance buyer demand will increase. Two issues impacting buyers today are mortgage rates and low inventory. While we may have peak rates behind us after today, there is unlikely to be a flood of inventory. Not only has the housing market in past recessions been robust, but a recession is pinpointed by data released well after a recession has started. In other words, we could be in a recession today, and judging by the general strength of the overall economy, would anyone guess that is true? Terms like contraction and expansion are excellent for esoteric economic discussions but, in real life, have little bearing on what takes place in the housing market. Supply, demand, and financing costs are the most significant factors in a real estate market, and all real estate is local. While anything can happen, nothing in today's data indicates a drawdown in home prices or the economy in general. 

Lastly, a quick look at the M2 money supply (linked at the bottom of the Market Trends page of shows a 170% increase from 2008 to today. The expansion (debasement) of the dollar is a significant contributing factor to home prices and decreased inventory. I mention this to illustrate how unlikely home prices will ever reach the lows of 2010 again. 

Now is an excellent opportunity for sellers to list and command near-peak pricing. While the process for buyers may be more challenging, some fantastic lending programs are available to make homeownership attainable. In addition, for high-net-worth buyers, looking at the growth projections in Central Oregon may ease any doubts about buying in today's market. No matter your views on the market or your timeframe, I am available to help! Whether you take advantage of the resources on my website or put me to work to help you reach your real estate goals, you can count on me to make the process easier. Please feel free to reach out anytime. 

Click here for the full report.

April 26, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report | April 26, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report for April 26, 2023

This week, inventory of available single-family homes declined in all three Central Oregon Counties, a sign that buyer demand is outstripping homes for sale. Pending sales in Deschutes County dropped by five to seventy-five, with twelve in Crook County and four in Jefferson County. Pending sales are a great future indication of where the market is heading. In Deschutes County, the median days listed for the seventy-five pending contracts was fifteen, with a median price reduction of -2.97%. Other than an anomaly in the data from March 2023, this is the lowest amount sellers have reduced the asking price since early May 2022. Yesterday Afternoon the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 6.5%, slowly declining from recent highs of nearly 7% but still above this year's low of 6.19%.


The sixty-five sold homes in Deschutes County last week had median days listed of eight. In Jefferson County, the days on the market for sold homes was twenty-two, and in Crook County, fifteen. Crook County's median sale price adjustment of sold homes was +1.72%. Not only are homes selling quickly, but the gap between the sale and list price is narrowing, a clear sign of a tightening market. Last April 27, there were eighty-eight pending sales in Deschutes County and 401 active listings. However, by June, there was a drop in pending sales and a further drop into July and through year-end, with a couple of solid weeks mixed in. Considering the lack of building inventory, the decline in mortgage interest rates, and strong buyer demand, it is only a matter of weeks before the comparison of the YTD 2022/2023 numbers inverts. Year-to-date sales for 2022 single-family homes in Deschutes County were 1318, compared to 806 in 2023. Nationwide there was a moderate increase in inventory last week, but those trends have not appeared in Central Oregon.


While the Fed may have another rate hike up its sleeve (I expect one more 25 basis point hike at the next meeting), most lenders and analysts expect lower mortgage rates through the second half of 2023. Based on our low inventory and strong demand, buyers are not waiting. With the fear of ever-increasing rates off the table, the housing market appears to be picking up momentum. Whether that is because buyers are comfortable with current rates, assume a refi in the future, or are bullish on Central Oregon (likely all three), the results have created another competitive real estate market. 


Our market is so diverse that it can be challenging to make comparisons of the mix of sold homes. Although the median pending sale price in Deschutes County for the week ending April 27, 2022, was 647k, compared to this week at 735K! Where did the drop in home prices go? For sellers, there is no reason to wait. Unquestionably, these conditions have applied pressure on buyers, and it looks likely that multiple offers could become typical again this summer. Fortunately, there is still enough breathing room to get bids accepted without competition, but moving quickly on a home you love is imperative. Multiple offers might not be the norm, but in many cases, more than one buyer is considering a property. 


According to the Portland State University population forecasts, Deschutes County expects to add nearly 13,000 residents by 2025 and another 20,000 by 2030. With our rolling weekly average available inventory tracking at ~500 listings, it is a good bet that homes are a safe investment. Assuming three residents per household, the additional residents projected to relocate to our area would equal a full year of annual sales or more. Granted, some of those transplants will rent, but there is no question that buyer demand will outpace supply for the foreseeable future. There will always be homes for sale, and lending programs to help all types of buyers, so there is no need to panic. However, if you are waiting for a significant price drop, I am unsure what would drive that trend. Even a massive event in the overall economy is unlikely to be the catalyst as people leaving big cities would likely accelerate under those circumstances, not decrease. 


I understand that many may interpret the data differently, and I am happy to compile any information you need to help make a decision. If waiting fits your schedule, please stay current with the tools available on or reach out for anything I can do to help. 


Click here for the full report.

April 24, 2023

Where to Live in Bend Oregon?

Bend has become one of the top places to live in Oregon, offering unparalleled natural beauty and access to outdoor recreation couples with a city that features a great restaurant scene, high quality schools, and a thriving job market. If you are considering a move to Bend, choosing the right neighborhood is an important component to make your relocation a total success.

To learn more about moving to Bend, contact us any time or check out the information below on four different areas in Bend.

Northwest BendWhere to Live in Bend Oregon

Living in Northwest Bend provides convenient access to many of the favorite outdoor recreation sites in the area, including Mt Bachelor just minutes away, and the Deschutes River running through the east side of Northwest Bend. This quadrant is also home to Drake Park and Mirror Pond and features an abundance of restaurants, shops, and parks including the downtown Bend area.

Featuring close proximity to both downtown and the river, many properties in Northwest Bend are priced on the high end of the market. You will find single-family homes, condos, and townhomes in Northwest Bend, many featuring breathtaking views or riverfront access.

Northeast Bend

Northeast Bend is home to the St. Charles Medical Center, the largest hospital in Central Oregon. It also features some of the most affordable real estate options in Bend, making it a top choice for first-time buyers and real estate investors. You will also find plenty of retail shopping centers in this quadrant, including a Costco and plenty of other conveniences.

Parks, schools, and neighborhoods make this a great place to settle down as a young family, and the affordability of the area is conducive to ongoing development which makes this a great place to invest.

Southwest Bend

Southwest Bend is known for its riverfront properties along the beautiful Deschutes, with some of the best views and outdoor recreation access in the area. This quadrant is bordered by the Deschutes National Forest to the west, protecting the natural beauty of the area from significant development.

The Old Mill District is located in Southwest Bend, a mixed-use development area along the river that features restaurants, breweries, shops, and more. Neighborhoods in Southwest Bend include golf communities and master planned communities, in addition to small, established neighborhoods. Most of the real estate in the area would be considered luxury homes, ideal for those looking for their dream home for sale in Bend.

Southeast Bend

If you are looking for a small ranch or acreage in Bend, Southeast Bend is probably going to be your ideal quadrant. There are still many large lots in the area, including ranches with irrigation rights. You will find a blend of newly developed neighborhoods and established communities in Southeast Bend, all with a laid back atmosphere.

Residents of Southeast Bend benefit from convenient access to the amenities, schools, parks, and entertainment of the city while enjoying a country lifestyle.

Ready to begin the search for homes for sale in Bend, or to learn more about living here? Contact us any time.

Posted in Bend
April 19, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report | April 19, 2023

The national average for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages climbed to 6.7% yesterday afternoon. However, pending sales increased by three to eighty in Deschutes County, and only nineteen days on the market. In Crook County, pending sales more than doubled from seven to fifteen, with forty-one days listed before securing a contract. Although, the five sold properties in Crook County were only on the market for a median of nine days. Jefferson County had six pending sales, up two from last week, with the median days listed at twenty-seven. The three sold homes in Jefferson County were only listed ten days before receiving acceptable offers. 

The active inventory in Deschutes County increased by four to 529. In Crook County, the available homes decreased by four to 117; in Jefferson County, the inventory increased by one to seventy-four. Sold homes in Deschutes County had a median price reduction of -4.66%, while in Jefferson County, the drop was -5.56%. In Crook County, the two sold homes in the median were full-price sales, making the median reduction  0%. The price reductions for the three sold properties in Crook County that did reduce the price to secure an offer were -8.33%, -3.53%, and -1.11%.

Comparing year-to-date sales from this year to 2022 shows a significant decrease in transaction volume. In Crook County, sales went from 135 YTD 2022 to 99 this year, while the median sale price increased from 445k to 465k. In Jefferson County, sales decreased from 109 to fifty-one, with the median sale price at 382k, a decrease of three thousand dollars from the last YTD. In Deschutes County, sales decreased from 1231 to 735, with the median price dropping from 685k to 620k. 

Total sales in Crook County in 2022 were 431, at a median sale price of 455k. In Jefferson County, there were 312 sales at a median of 400k, and in Deschutes County, there were a staggering 4130 sales in 2022 at a median of 680k. The sales volume by the second half of 2022 was down considerably for all three counties as well as the median sale price, except for Jefferson County, where the median price increased slightly during the second half of 2022. This dynamic was in play for the entire country, so take reports of massive changes in YTD numbers with a grain of salt, as buyers were extremely active in the first half of 2022 in anticipation of rising mortgage rates. 

The lowest sales volume of single-family homes in Deschutes County since 1997 (the earliest data in the Central Oregon MLS) was 2,043 in 2008. Most of you will recall that in 2008, we were in the grips of a sub-prime lending-induced housing crash, and the median home price dropped from 399k in 2007 to 280k in 2008 before bottoming out at 176K In 2010. 

The low sales volume of 2007-2009 is attributable to the bottom falling out of the housing market and buyers sitting on the sidelines. Today, buyer demand is strong relative to inventory and couldn't be any different from 2008. However, at the current pace, it is apparent that sales volume in 2023 will be down significantly from the peak of 5,326 sales of single-family homes in Deschutes County in 2020. The results of all this data are firm home prices, although down from the peak last year. However, the median sale price is still considerably higher than just in 2021, when the yearly median price was 603k. In addition, last year's inventory peaked in early August at 972; we will be hard-pressed to match that number this year without a rush of sellers. 

Staying in close contact with your lender and being prepared to act quickly on appealing homes is very important for buyers in this market. Unfortunately, with so few listings, predicting when the next great home might be available is impossible. However, if rates decline later this year, buyer demand may increase considerably relative to the stock of homes for sale. So, believe it or not, now may be the right time to jump in and find your corner of Central Oregon.

Please do not hesitate to reach out whenever you need anything.

Click here for the full report.

April 12, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report | April 12, 2023

Central Oregon Market Report for April 12, 2023

Over a week, I consume a lot of real-estate-related content, whether working for clients in Central Oregon or reading and watching reports from different analysts. Recently, I've noticed a trend in the comment sections of videos and written accounts of incredulous agents taking issue with the data. First, I think it is essential to scrutinize the source, as many people working in this space are aiming for clicks or trying to sell you something. However, most legitimate reports use national numbers or, at best, provide a brief cursory overview of large to medium-sized cities. In almost every case, the data is at least 30 days old and, in many cases, closer to 60 days stale. Nowadays, the comment section of almost anything can quickly devolve into a mess, and the real estate forums are no different. However, I always find it interesting how anecdotal most commenting agents' views are rather than data-based. Others are demanding an opinion on what the market will look like in six months. If I, or any other analyst, could predict the market six months into the future, I would not be working in real estate! In most cases, I feel reasonably safe forecasting the next three months based on the last three months and following the financial markets. The latter being more volatile than ever makes those forecasts increasingly tricky. 


Comparing the sales from the week ending April 20, 2022, to the week ending April 12, 2023 (this morning) clearly show the changes over the past year. Using the seven days last April, there were ninety-eight sold single-family homes in Deschutes County at five days on the market, a median sale price of 685k, and fourteen price changes at a median of -1.32%. The previous seven days ending this morning show forty-three sold homes, seventeen days on the market, a median sale price of 639k, and thirteen price changes at a median of -4.62%. For the period in 2022, there were 100 pending sales compared with seventy-seven this week. 


The market has softened from last year's frenetic pace, shown in the data above. As you probably recall, the Fed initiated the first rate increase of 2022 in March (25 basis points) and was telegraphing several more increases throughout the year. Since last March, the Fed has kept its promise and has raised rates by 475 basis points. Preceding the coming rate increases, the fast-paced market of 2021 through early 2022 stepped on the gas as both buyers and sellers rushed to make moves before the full effect of future rate increases took hold. By September 2022, the Central Oregon real estate market (and the national market) slowed considerably, with mortgage interest rates near or above 7% (7.24% on October 17, 2022). However, By early February this year, sales began to pick up as mortgage rates eased back. The national average yesterday afternoon for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 6.52%, still elevated compared to the last couple of years, although a pivot (or pause) seems likely for the second half of 2023. For comparison, the rate in April of 2022 was 5.13%.


January 1, 2022, through April 12, 2022, shows 1149 single-family home sales in Deschutes County, compared to 679 for 2023. It would be easy to look at the reduced sales volume and increased mortgage rates as signs of a softening market. However, while the market has slowed from last year's head-spinning pace, the dearth of sellers has kept prices firm, and many properties are commanding full-price offers quickly. Pending sales are down 23% since my report on April 20, 2022, but still robust at seventy-seven. More importantly, the days on the market for those sales was only ten. This morning there are 525 single-family homes listed in Deschutes County, down seventeen from last week. That breaks down to 343 in Bend, 163 in Redmond, ninety-six in La Pine, thirty-nine in Terrebonne, and thirty-six in Sisters. There are 121 listings in Crook County and seventy-three in Jefferson County. 


On May 18, 2022, there were 538 single-family homes listed in Deschutes County. So while the national reporting may beat the drum of high inventory and low prices, that simply has not been the case in Central Oregon. Whether sellers enter the market in the second half of 2023 remains to be seen, as well as whether the Fed blinks and backs off rate increases or even lowers rates. However, until something changes, our market looks more like it did in 2021 and 2022 than in pre-2019. As rates decrease, more buyers enter the market, and prices remain firm or increase. My prediction of a 9% increase in home sale prices may have been a miss, but the housing market in Central Oregon remains strong. 


Multiple offers may not be prevalent, but ten days for pending sales are moving quickly, and many properties have more than one buyer interested. Waiting on a home you like or waiting for more, cheaper inventory is not a good strategy in today's market. There are always homes to buy, but the more specific your needs are, the more critical it is to take action on a great property. Central Oregon has an incredibly diverse geography and home selection; in many cases, unique properties are only available rarely. For the casual observer, it may seem like there are myriad options. Still, considering the price point, location, and home attributes, it is clear that most buyers only have a handful of options. 


Regular readers of my report know I am a proponent of taking a long-term view of housing rather than trying to time the market. Conditions today may be challenging for buyers, but the long-term view of Central Oregon remains bullish. Sellers may not be commanding as high of prices as the last couple of years, but close. So don't wait to buy real estate. Buy real estate and wait!


Click here for the full report.