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Portland Real Estate Blog
Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 11
Today we are talking about whether it’s a good idea for you to sell or rent your home in Portland. One of the best reasons to rent your home is the cash flow. You’ll be able to collect rental income and pay your mortgage as long as you have a good tenant in place. The tax advantages that come with renting out a home are also a great benefit.
Many people choose to put their homes on the rental market for a short period of time, even between two and five years, because they know they will want to move back into that home eventually. If you have to move out of Portland for work or some other assignment and you know you want to come back, you can...
Industrial property appetite in the U.S.-
The commercial real estate market has seen good recovery in the multi-family, office and retail markets around the U.S. And, now we are finally hearing from industrial agents around the country that warehouse/industrial market is showing the same recovery signs.
That progress is being seen in tertiary markets around the U.S., like Bend, Oregon. Their surplus of space disappeared quickly once the demand returned. That demand has included manufacturing, distribution and warehouse spaces. Bend is basically out of industrial space with no new inventory coming on the market any time soon. That will definitely lead to rental rate increases.
In many markets, this lack of space is sparking a return to new development. That is helped along by the growth in e-commerce, causing a need to create more regional distribution centers for those goods sold online. Amazon.com is currently building large, 1 million sq. ft. distribution centers in multiple markets around the U.S. That phenomenon is also occurring at a smaller scale in middle and smaller markets.
In some markets, new development has been slowed by lack of available financing or the cost of construction and land being too high. One concern for the Bend market is the lack of supply of space will likely push rental rates even higher, which could prompt some companies to seek re-location in other areas. Yet, speculative construction will likely occur with projects looking to break ground in 2015. This new construction activity is focused on build-to-suit projects rather than speculative development.
Ultimately, the growing appetite for industrial space bodes well for owners, investors, and developers and that momentum shows no signs of slowing. Most people in the industry see a very positive scenario for the industrial market going forward into 2015 and beyond.
Source: CCIM Investment Magazine, September/October 2014
An increasing number of U.S. enclosed shopping malls are suffering from declining sales and closure of major retailers. Green Street Advisors, a real estate and REIT analytics firm, project that about 15% of U.S. malls will fail or be converted into non-retail space within the next 10 years. Another retail consultant projects that as many as half of America’s shopping malls will fail within the next 15 to 20 years. That projection is also fed by the fact that no major enclosed malls have been built since 2006.
Of the roughly 1,000 malls in the U.S., about 400 cater to upper-income shoppers. For these malls, business is improving. For the others, business is in decline. Several reasons include internet sales increases, shopper frustrations with gridlock to get to the mall, difficult parking, noisy interiors and increased kiosk sales with aggressive salespeople. Malls that seem to be successful have storefronts that shoppers can enter from the parking lot, for easier and quicker ingress and egress.
The successful malls are being enhanced/improved by the addition of housing adjacent or very close, additions of open, light “community” spaces with fountains and music, lots of restaurants, movie theaters, etc. These encourage a one-stop, multiple activity experience.
The unsuccessful malls are being converted to community colleges, business offices, and health care facilities.
We have a great example of this effort to enhance the shopping experience with what is happening in Bridgeport Shopping Mall, just off I-5 near Tualatin. It is refreshing to see retail owners who are being aggressive and planning a positive approach to maximize their investment by enhancing and improving the entire experience for their customers.
Source: Business Insider (Jan 31, 2014) and The New Yorker (Mar. 11, 2014)
Rate of same-sex housing discrimination studied
By Jo Becker, Education/Outreach Specialist, Fair Housing Council of Oregon
A HUD survey released in 2013 involving 6,833 tests in 50 different metropolitan areas found that same-sex couples were over 15% more likely to experience discrimination than heterosexual couples.
Sexual orientation and gender identity are not, as of yet, covered by the federal Fair Housing Act, but they are protected under state law in Oregon.
Shanna Smith of the National Fair Housing Alliance responded to the study by saying, “This study serves as evidence that there is a dire need to include protections for the LGBT community in the federal Fair Housing Act. More enforcement of these laws is also necessary as discrimination continues at high rates even in states that have these protections for the LGBT community. The HUD study is groundbreaking in both its scope and magnitude. While the discrimination statistics are no surprise, the study itself was a crucial first step that needed to be taken to better understand the extent of housing discrimination.”
In another report released a year earlier, the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP) found that multi-year trends in anti-LGBTQ hate violence and homicides continue. In fact, 2012 had the distinction of having the fourth highest yearly total of anti-LGBTQ violence ever recorded. The report details that transgender women, people of color, and gay men face the most severe violence.
For more information about fair housing visit: www.FHCO.org/sexualorient.htm. Here we offer a variety of tools – such as the Self-Assessment Compliance Checklist and Suggested Best Practices for Various Housing Transactions created by our colleagues at the Washington State Human Rights Commission – as well as a myriad of assessments and statements from HUD on the issues, as well as other relevant resources.
If you or someone you know suspects their civil rights in housing have been violated, please contact our free and confidential Fair Housing Hotline today at 800/424-3247 ext. 2.
This article brought to you by the Fair Housing Council; a civil rights organization. All rights reserved © 2014. Write jbecker@FHCO.org to reprint articles or inquire about ongoing content for your own publication.
What is smoke-free housing? It is a rental property where smoking is not allowed or is only allowed in designated smoking areas. You can specify what part of the property is smoke-free: the apartments, the common areas, or all the property.
Why would a landlord make his/her property smoke-free? Many landlords report that prohibiting smoking attracts quality tenants and saves the landlords money, as inside smoke causes damage like carpet, vinyl and countertop burns. Smoking also can cause extra cleaning costs – on the grounds, nicotine stains on interior walls, and more frequent shampooing of carpets.
Is it legal to have a smoke-free property? Actually the state of Oregon requires a rental property owner to have a smoking policy – so all tenants know whether or not smoking is allowed, and if it is allowed, where it is allowed.
Do tenants accept the smoke-free concept? One recent survey of renters in Portland found that three-quarters of those surveyed agreed that “all other things being equal” they would chose a smoke-free property to live in. Over half said they would even pay extra to live in such housing.
From a landlord perspective, it might be worth checking with your insurance company, to see if there might be any cost-savings for the landlord by implementing a smoke-free policy.
Source: Rental Housing Association of Greater Portland, February, 2014
This information is from sources deemed to be reliable, but must be verified with ones’ own legal, accounting and tax professionals.