Portland Real Estate Market Action Report – Apr. 2012

Introduction: This post analyzes the RMLS Market Action Report for Metro Portland for April 2012. I use the first two pages because they contain uniform, meaningful information. Below the images are my comments. Click here to view the full MAR April 2012 or to view the Archives.

Narrative: The “April Residential Highlights” section starts with year-to-year changes, where closed sales are up 13.1% from 2011, pending sales are up 18.0%, and new listings were reduced by 2.0%. This year’s inventory is 4.7 months (last year was 7.2, last month was 5.0). With closed sales, the year-to-year percentage change saw the Metro Portland market fall 4.9% on average sale price and 3.9% on median sale price.

At the monthly level, closed sales increased 7.6%, pending sales were up 4.1%, and new listings were up by 5.3% from March 2012. In terms of pricing, average sales increased 3.9% from March 2012, while median sales were up 4.3%.

Multiple offers are becoming more commonplace in close-in areas of Portland. Last week, a listing in South Tabor closed at $325,000, nearly $30,000 more than asking price. The increase in new listings shows more seller confidence, especially when they hear the stories of multiple offers.

The inventory absorption figure is 4.7 months, the lowest since June 2007 and considerably lower than January (7.0) and February (6.5) of this year. Inventory decreased despite the 5.3% increase in new listings over last month. Last year, inventory was 7.2 months and two years ago it was 7.3 months.

Interest rates were at 3.750% this week for a 30-year fixed, conforming loan (loan amount under $417,000). Rates fluctuated, in the last month, but are a little lower than last month.

On the second page, there are some mixed results on a year-to-year basis. North Portland (area 141) is up 0.1% (from 0.4% decrease last month), NE (142) and SE Portland (143) are off 4.4% (off 4.4% last month), and 6.0% (off 7.5% last month) and market times are 73, 77, and 102 respectively. All three are below the regional average of 123 days.

You can see more activity here than other areas. For example, North Portland had 70 closed sales and 303 active listings (23.1% closed (22.6% last month)). NE was 175/620 (28.2% (31.2% last month)) and SE was 246/791 (31.1% (22.9% last month)).

Other Areas: The West Side (148) includes all NW and SW Portland. It is off 5.3% (4.4% last month) with a market time of 139. Lake Oswego/West Linn (147) appreciated 0.8% (up 0.8% last month) with market times of 142 days. The West Side had 198 closings and 958 active listings (20.7% (18.6% last month)), while Lake O had 114/618 (18.4% (13.7% last month)).

Absorption: The absorption rates indicate that N (4.3 months), NE (3.5), and SE (3.2) are all below the Metro average of 4.7 months of inventory. NW/SW (4.8) is slightly above average and Lake O/West Linn (5.4) is marginally above average.

The data continues to show that Portland Metro’s many areas are performing at different paces. Each of these areas can be broken down into sub-areas (e.g., neighborhoods, zip codes, school districts) that have different pricing, market times, and absorption rates.

Those are my “highlights” and analysis on this month’s report. If you would like a report from another area or if you have questions about this report, please call or e-mail. You can view more information on specific neighborhoods on my BIGHAT homepage or on posts to my neighborhood landing pages for Beaumont, Irvington, Grant Park, Hollywood, Alameda, and Laurelhurst. You can also search all homes for sale in Metro Portland on an Interactive Map.

About the Author | Jack Kearney

Jack Kearney is a principal real estate broker with M Realty. He is a former tax and real estate attorney, who would like to put all of his skills and knowledge to work for you.