Blog Stories January 2019 Portland Real Estate Market Report

January 2019 Portland Real Estate Market Report

By Ross Seligman, January 15, 2019

December 2018 is a Seller’s market*

Home For Sale in December 2018: 1889 units.
• Down 20.5% compared to last month
• Up 31.9% compared to last year

Home Closed in December 2018: 648 units.
• Down 17.3% compared to last month
• Down 26.4% compared to last year

Home Placed under Contract in December 2018: 561 units.
• Down 16.3% compared to last month
• Down 5.1% compared to last year

Click here for the full Market Report


Wait… does this report say “seller’s market”? Yes, yes it does. But, is it? NOPE. It is still a neutral balanced market currently in my opinion. So, why does this say “seller’s market”? Because the program I use to generate these reports does an automatic ‘seller’ or ‘buyer’ market summary basing their assessment on what we call ‘months of inventory.’ You ready for a more technical explanation this month?

‘Months of inventory’ is the fifth chart on the full report and is a figure that literally means that, given the current pace of home sales, the number of months it would take for the current inventory of homes for sale to sell. Well, great, but what does this really mean? A quick rule of thumb on how this is used by market watchers is the following (and this is how this program automatically decides what kind of market we are in):

Buyer’s market = more than 6 months of inventory based on closed sales
Seller’s market = less than 3 months of inventory based on closed sales
Neutral market = 3 – 6 months of inventory based on closed sales

So, when you look at the fifth chart, we have just statistically dipped to 2.9 months of inventory which technically = seller’s market.

But, look deeper. Why are we at 2.9 months of inventory? Because a ton of sellers decided to just pull their homes off the market for the holidays. So, inventory dropped. You will also notice that closed and pending sales were down from the previous month. In addition, average price per square ft went down vs November, days on market went up, etc. 

Now, this is not a big downturn in Portland from November. It is just the cyclical nature of our market each year, combined with an overall cooler market from the last 5 years. December is SLOW. People are thinking about Santa, not selling. And who wants to move during all of the holiday celebrating? Mostly nobody unless they have to. So, nothing has changed, really, and I don’t want people to think that something HAS changed and gone back to last year and that we are now in a seller’s market.

As the days get lighter and interest rates change approaching the Spring, the market might be moving in either direction. We will have to watch and you know I’ll keep you informed.

Click the link above to see the full report.


Ross Seligman

Principal Broker | OR


Team Members

Ross Seligman moved to Portland in 1999 after accidentally discovering this oasis of a city in a nationwide desert of strip malls and sprawl. Ross likes to call Portland the "land of opportunity." Why, you ask? Where else can you be a successful real estate broker while simultaneously leading a double life as a musician? That would definitely be a bizarre combination in New Jersey but, in Portland, quite ordinary. In Portland, one expects that their straight-laced accountant is secretly oil painting between Yoga classes. From the moment he arrived in Portland, Ross quickly fell in love with the vibrant energy of the people, gorgeous homes and neighborhoods, and exploding arts scene. Deciding to embrace it all, Ross became an active real estate broker and quickly immersed himself in the city culture. Working with premier Portland boutique company Living Room Realty, Ross is well known for his accessibility, integrity, professionalism, knowledge of the market, and passion for Portland. When he is not busy representing clients or studying market trends, you can find Ross playing music around the city, hiking and camping in the unparalleled beauty of the Pacific NW, and spending as much time with friends and family as possible. Ross Seligman also appeared on Broadway at the Lyceum Theater in NYC as Janis Joplin's guitarist in "A Night With Janis Joplin".
Ross and his "Own It Portland" team are known for their passion for people and real estate. They are enjoying Portland's growth and expansion all while embracing the quirks that make this city so special. Ross and his team can help sell your house for the highest possible price, release you from the unpredictable rental market and secure your dream home as a buyer. They will answer any questions about the Portland real estate market and process, all while making you feel part of a strong team. With hundreds of home sales closed representing buyers and sellers all throughout the Portland Metro Area, Ross and The Own It Portland team have a proven track record of outstanding, top level service and results. Whether it is receiving keys in your hand or top dollar for your home sale, Ross and and his team are the go-to real estate pros for Portland and would love to help you achieve your goals, surpassing expectations every step of the way.
Click here to read more client testimonials

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