Blog Alyssa Isenstein Krueger A Ladd's Addition Neighborhood Affair

A Ladd’s Addition Neighborhood Affair

By Alyssa Isenstein Krueger, July 9, 2021

I have the best neighbors ever in Ladd’s Addition. We moved into our home 17 years ago, and had our first kid 11 years ago. Within 5 years of us moving in, most of our block turned over from old and aging folks to younger families with small kids. At one point, there were seven families with kids all within a five year range from youngest to oldest on our block. Our kids have grown up together, played together, laughed together, had block parties together, cried together and all the in-betweens. When they were younger, in the ages 4-8ish range, they would spend summer days moving back and forth between houses as a roving gang. Us parents never worried because we knew the kids were at someone’s house on the block. Only 2 families have moved over the last 10 years, and one didn’t move far. Throughout this whole time, the adults on our block have spent countless hours over the years doing impromptu happy hours, block parties and backyard hang outs.

Daniela is one of my longtime neighbors and her parents are getting older and have lived in North Portland for almost 15 years. Daniela’s family is very close, and for several years Daniela and her husband Alex have talked about buying a house near them for her parents to move into. This past spring, Daniela and her parents decided the time was right to make the move. I was thrilled and honored when they asked me to represent them on both listing the North Portland house and representing them for the house purchase. The plan was to sell her parents home and buy a new home for them within 5 minutes walking distance our houses.  Daniela was so sure this was going to happen- even the within 5 minutes walking distance part, that I never questioned if we could pull this off.

In late April, Daniela’s parents North Portland house was just about ready to list, and one month later in late May, we put that house on the market. Right before we listed that house, Daniela’s parents flew to Florida to stay with their other daughter for a few months while we worked on selling their longtime North Portland house and finding them a new house within 5 minutes walking distance from Daniela. Meanwhile, just days before her parents house went live, one of our other neighbors shared that a neighbor across the back alley from us was going to be putting their house on the market within the next couple of weeks. It sounded too good to be true, so the next evening Daniela, Alex and I marched over to the across the alley neighbors house and knocked on the front door. These other neighbors opened the door and first words out of my mouth were, “Daniela wants to buy your house.” It took a few minutes for the seller to get what we were saying, but once we explained it, he loved the idea. He said they had already signed a listing contract with an agent and the house was scheduled to go on the market in a couple of weeks, but I could contact his agent for more information. A couple of days after that visit I spoke with the sellers listing agent and the gist of it was the house was going on the market in a couple of weeks, and once it was on the market, we could submit an offer.

Back in North Portland, her parents house received a couple of fantastic over asking offers with great terms, and that house went pending with a great buyer. As it happened, the neighbors listed their house while I was on vacation in Mexico City, so one of my colleagues brought Daniela and her husband to see the house and it really was perfect for her parents. Because it was a cute true 3-bedroom house in Ladd’s Addition, it received multiple offers. We came in strong on price and terms, and because the sellers loved the idea of keeping the house in the Ladd’s Family, they accepted Daniela’s offer. The home inspection turned up some unfortunate issues and thankfully the sellers were understanding and agreed to a price reduction and a significant closing cost credit so Daniela and Alex could get work done on the house after closing. A couple of weeks ago Daniela’s parents house closed right on time, and then a couple of days ago, Daniela closed on the house behind her. The sellers are staying in the house through July, and in early August Daniela and Alex will have work done on the house so by mid-May when Daniela’s parents return to Portland, they can glide right into their new home.

Since Daniela won’t get the keys to the new  house for a few weeks, to celebrate, I did what we always do, I threw a little back yard party for Daniela which she hosted in her own yard and most of our neighbors joined in for a toast. Thinking back on it, the plan was so precise, that had I questioned whether or not it would work, I would have lost so much sleep worrying over whether a house would come on the market that met the criteria to make the plan happen. Thankfully I never questioned any of it and just as Daniela predicted, it all worked out just dandy.

Alyssa Isenstein Krueger



I am living the dream. Working as a real estate broker in my home town brings this native Portland gal joy beyond measure. I took the round-about-road towards this career. After graduating from Sarah Lawrence College in NY two decades ago with a degree in liberal arts/creative writing, I returned to my hometown of PDX and got a job in a legendary record store of days gone by, worked as a music and culture writer for Portland’s oldest weekly publication while pursuing a graduate degree in Urban and Regional Planning at Portland State University. Armed with my masters degree, I moved into the realm of affordable housing, community development, and urban planning, and then rounded the corner with a long stay in arts management then back around the bend when I got my real estate license and went to work for a non-profit housing builder at the cusp of the market crash in 2007. In the time between that market crash and the ensuing madness, I’ve stayed on top of the market like a dog guarding a bone. Using a magical combination of experience, instinct, and market data, I know what homes are worth, I know how to write a terrific offer, and I know how to help a seller market a home and receive and accept a great offer. Mutual trust and tender relationship building is the basis and foundation of my real estate practice. I use my skills as an active listener, creative solution finder and ace negotiator to get my clients the best price on a home, win the multiple offer roulette, and have as smooth and easy transaction as possible. Timely and responsive communication is the most important aspect of building trust and I don’t take that part lightly.  I am a stickler for details and nothing pleases me more than guiding a client through the home buying or selling process (and sometimes both at the same time). My role is one of advocate, advisor, partner, transaction organizer, and counselor. I am a partner broker with Portland Housing Center and relish the opportunity to work with eager first time home buyers. I have a knack for seeing the potential in almost any home and love to help clients see past what is and help them envision what can be. I have a decade of first-hand experience renovating and caressing my bungalow in Ladd’s Addition and had the honor of having my own home featured in a story in the Oregonian’s Homes and Gardens section. I can feel the love for any and almost all homes, but my heart goes all aflutter when entering a museum quality time capsule house -- the solid mid-century ones with the original pink or green tiled bathrooms, those charming early 1900’s farmhouses with the original kitchen cabinets and fir countertops, the cozy bungalows with the built-ins still intact. When I’m not working with clients, you’ll find me hanging with my two boys, Kalman and Saul, and my husband Robert, a Fine Art Conservator with his own business, Cascadia Art Conservation Center.  Retired racing greyhounds have been my constant companions since 1997, and our family includes Peanut the greyhound, Pinto the South Korean Italian greyhound, and our chickens, Rosie, Lola, Squishy, Duck and Prince. I am an obsessive gardener/plant fiend and love that we live in a climate where I can grow eucalyptus trees (I have 5 in my yard including a couple I started from seed) alongside blueberry bushes (6 in my yard). Given some free time, you’ll find me junking at an estate sale, dreaming of high brow junk, low brow art, making things, sewing, reading and dreaming of tropical locales.
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