I'm a homeowner in Eastmoreland (20 years) and in my opinion there's nothing like the southeast area of Portland.
We are selling our very large (4100 sq ft) home because our kids are grown and we want a smaller house. But we want to stay in the neighborhood. We've been looking around and here's what we've found:
Eastmoreland: Higher end, however, we just saw a charming 980 Sq ft house go for $306K. Rare, but there are those houses here sometimes.
Eastmoreland Heights: Average home prices seem to be, at least currently, in the $350 K range. But prices may drop. Who knows? It's a good area and worth a look.
Woodstock: We've seen homes in the mid to high 200's.
Reed: Prices vary. You may find something towards 39th and Holgate. Check around there.
Richmond: we are just exploring this area. It has a good feel to it. Ask a broker.
There are also condos around, if you want that. We don't, so we haven't really looked.
Here's a link to a website about my house to compare the feel of our neighborhood.
Good luck with your search. Portland is a great town.
Location: Picture a bulls eye and target circles. The bullseye is city center, The areas you are mentioning are about 2 circles out from the bullseye. How far from the city center ("in minutes to") do you want to be?
I can help you by sending you a list of specific links of places you can check crime stats, police reports, school reports, location of sex offenders, and some helpful relocation assistance etc. As far as 'happenings' or 'ammenities' in and around neighborhoods I can point to resources where you can find this out as well. - then after researching we can begin to search for homes to view around some of the areas you want to consider so you can see what is available in your price range. Then when you see the homes, you can choose the best one for your needs. Let me know if you want my list of resources. When you email (if you choose to) let me know the date of your anticipated move. Contact me via my email at email@example.com for further discussion if you're interested in hearing more or gaining my help and representation. Check out my quality service rating which is collected by a Independently Research Firm and posted at http://www.qualityservice.org/. Just enter my name (June Lizotte) and state of Oregon.
I've never met the agent who hosts this site - but love what she has done to describe Portland neighborhoods.
Keller Williams Realty Portland Premiere
Now, as far as your price point, anything inside of 62nd (in the Woodstock area) or close to the heart of St. Johns will have you closer to the $275K range - and that would be a screaming deal if you could find it. As someone else said, the close in, desirable neighborhoods with energy and character have a median price closer to $345K (and that isn't a lot of house in these areas). Whatever homes you're finding close to $250K in those areas likely have something a little less desirable for the general buyer (i.e. a more busy street, necessary updating, deferred maintenance, smaller lot size, etc)... so, just keep that in mind.
Here are some great resources:
http://www.portlandmaps.com - Simply type in an address of a home you like and you can find all the demographic information for that area as well as general property information and community service information.
http://www.walkscore.com - This is an AMAZING site for determining whether a particular neighborhood will have what you want. Just type in the address and it will show you EVERYTHING - parks, libraries, restaurants, coffee shops, etc - within walking distance to the home you're considering and will tell you how walkable that location will be for you. It even has access to public transit routes, if I'm not mistaken.
http://www.googlemaps.com - this will allow you to see a street view of most homes or (as least) an arial view of the homes location.
Hopefully all the links will help you determine a location perfect for you :) :)
Tom Inglesby, Broker
RE/MAX Equity Group Inc.1-888-982-6789 x 5416
RE/MAX Equity Group inc.