Rent or buy in Pearl 2013?

Asked by Djhazlitt, 87123 Mon Jan 7, 2013

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Bob Hoerner…, , Portland, OR
Mon Jan 7, 2013
I will address your question a little different as I am a lender and have helped many first time buyers look at the rent vs. buying question. First I agree with the realtors that looking at the future of how long you plan on staying in the area as renting does offer the advantage be able to move when you are ready and lease terms up.

Purchasing does not allow for a quick move, yet offers many benefits. That is being able to do with your place as you wish and having some tax write offs plus the added benefit of long term equity growth in value. I would like to bring up the added cost that will go with home ownership which includes property taxes and home owners insurance. When looking into the Pearl District you will have the added cost of HOA dues which go to the buildings up keep and taxes so please ask your agent about any and all cost.

We are currently in a landlords market when it comes to rentals around the Portland metro area with the Pearl being one of the hotter rental markets. So I would start by saying to sit down with a lender and see what you can qualify for on the purchase side as this can help answer your question. Then meet with a good Realtor that knows the Pearl area and can advise as to what your purchasing dollar will be able get you.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions.
Bob Hoerner 503.939.9220
1 vote
Brad Golik, Agent, Portland, OR
Wed Jan 9, 2013
To me, this is an easy answer...depending on your timeline. If you are looking at a shorter time frame, renting may be the answer. If you are looking to settle down for a longer period, no question, now is a good time to buy. I say this not because I would like to help you buy a condo (which I would!) but because of the current market dynamics. Rentals are at a premium right now and several new apartment buildings are in the works in the NW area. This is not the case with buying though. There are no new buildings in the works so current demand will remain high for the already low inventory. Yes this could change over time, but remember, it takes time to build new buildings. The other thing to keep in mind are the current interest rates. Money is cheap right now!!! The amount of square footage that you are able to buy is much greater now because of lower prices and financing that is half of what it was not that long ago! If you decide to wait before you buy you could be facing higher prices and higher rates, this could be the difference in whether you could afford a 2 bedroom unit right now or only a 1 bedroom unit in the future...depending on your needs of course.

The best thing you can do right now is get out and take a look at what is available in the market. Inventory is low right now so your "dream condo" may not even be on the market right now. But having patience and working with a good agent who knows the market could lead to you finding the perfect place in the near future!
Best of luck!

Brad Golik
0 votes
Janeese Jack…, Agent, Portland, OR
Mon Jan 7, 2013
D: you can get some great thinking points, but cannot really get a credible answer to such a "loaded" question in this forum. You need to sit down and brainstorm with trusted advisors (real estate broker, mortgage broker, CPA and/or financial planner) to determine your long & short-term goals and how your housing needs fit into those goals. I live in the Pearl, own an investment property in the Pearl and work the Pearl, so my first question is "why the Pearl"??? That would be followed by several other questions (personal "needs & wants" questions like comfortable price point & size requirements + financial questions such as for how much are you pre-approved?). Rental inventory and for sale inventory is low in all areas of P-town and it's also true in the Pearl. It's a great place to live and an excellent urban environment but, definitely not the only option! If you'd like to brainstorm, email All the best...jj

Janeese Jackson, Principal Broker
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0 votes
Tom Inglesby, Agent, Portland, OR
Mon Jan 7, 2013
Great area in NW Portland. Prices are higher then but location always demands higher prices. The market came back faster there and there is not much for sale depending on your price point. There are some building that have frozen taxes that will help lower your payments. I would love to help you.
Tom Inglesby
Broker RE/MAX Equity Group
0 votes
Sara Lewis, Agent, Lake Oswego, OR
Mon Jan 7, 2013
If you know this is where you want to live then I say buy! Rates and prices are both as low as we may ever see them, as opposed to the rental market which is at an all time high with very little inventory and high prices.

Sara Lewis
Principal Broker
The Hasson Company Realtors
The Hasson Company Realtors Top Producer Award
Diamond-Platinum Member of PMAR Masters Circle
Mobile: 503-481-3478
0 votes
Tamara Koedo…, Agent, Lake Oswego, OR
Mon Jan 7, 2013
If you are in the market to purchase and know this is where you would like to live, I recommend purchasing as prices are definitely in an upward move right now. The prices are about as low as they have been and that combined with the low interest rates make now a great time to purchase.

That being said, I have friends who rent in the Pearl because it is the lifestyle that they love but they can't afford to purchase there.
0 votes
Linda Heinri…, Agent, Lake Oswego, OR
Mon Jan 7, 2013
This question totally depends on your budget and long term goals. The Pearl is a great location for Urban living, but it does tend to run a little higher than other locations. If you know this is your lifestyle, then lock in the great prices and low interest rates now. If you are unsure or see changes in the next few years, then you might be better suited renting. There are calculators on that can also help to guide your decisions from the financial point of view. Good luck.
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