Like other major metro areas, Portland’s luxury market has seen a dynamic shift from low-to-high demand thanks to a lack of inventory. According to Oregonlive.com, “the price to buy a residential property in the Portland area jumped 15% from 2020 to 2021.” So far in 2022, the price creep has only continued.
For those buyers who want a luxury urban living experience, a sophisticated condominium in downtown’s iconic Portland Plaza building (modernized in 2018 to the tune of $10 million) is listed at $1.55 million. It’s in Portland’s creative district and two blocks to Portland’s Waterfront.
Heading to Lake Oswego, a showcase home built for the Northwest Natural Street of Dream competition is currently listed at $2.995 million. This two-level, 5,306-square-foot home won Best Interior Design and Best Kitchen awards in 2015 for its high-quality finishes.
To better understand Portland’s luxury market, I recently connected with Terry Sprague, founder and broker of LUXE, a full-service boutique brokerage with offices in Lake Oswego and downtown Portland. This is what Sprague sees in today’s luxury market.
EP: Describe your current market dynamics?
TS: We’ve seen a complete shift in the market over the last couple of years, with COVID acting as a significant contributing factor. With shifts in the way people now work and a renewed prioritization of family commitments, many people have become inspired to rethink or accelerate their long-term plans. This has driven people to migrate to more desirable locations, purchase primary residences that fit their new needs, or purchase second or vacation homes in locations where they see themselves retiring or relocating to in the future.
My sellers have been the beneficiary of the lack of supply, high demand, and significant price appreciation. While my buyers, at the same time, are finding incredible properties that tick all their boxes for the amenities they seek for their new lifestyle demands.
EP: What changes have you seen so far in 2022?
TS: It’s still early, but so far, the trends of the last two years are continuing, and concerns over interest rate increases have had no effect on the luxury real estate market. As in 2020 and 2021, I continue to have clients looking to migrate to locations that are more predictable and offer the lifestyle options they desire. I see the older generation – mainly Baby Boomers – accelerating their plans to buy a second home or relocate. This current environment is speeding up many people’s long-term plans.
EP: What potential changes do you forecast for the first half of 2022?
TS: I’ve been keeping a close eye on prices. While the economy runs in cycles and the real estate market is closely tied to the economy, appreciation has been above normal. It’s important to let the market help dictate prices; however, with the multiple offer environment we are currently in, prices have risen sharply. I continue to advise clients on pricing properties appropriately, not overpricing them, because no one can say how long this economic cycle will remain.
EP: Do you see more sellers coming to market in your area?
TS: So far this year, buyers continue to outweigh the inventory and selling pool, but as sellers continue to reassess their long-term living situations, I believe more homes will become available.
People want to take advantage of this market, so we will be seeing more inventory – good inventory – coming to market this year.
EP: If so, how will that impact market conditions?
TS: While I do think we’ll see more sellers this year, it likely won’t be enough to quench the thirst of how many buyers are out there right now. It will remain a very competitive environment. Buyers should be prepared with aggressive strategies, like offering above list price or having concessions that are advantageous for the seller when they find a property they want. For buyers and sellers, it is important to work with a broker who is connected and understands how to get deals done in this competitive environment.
Look to Portland’s luxury market to continue its upward trend in pricing and demand.
LUXE is an exclusive member of Forbes Global Properties, a consumer marketplace and membership network of elite brokerages selling the world’s most luxurious homes.