Portland Real Estate Market Report – January 2018
Portland real estate report for January 2018 is out! From what I see, January has been a real slow month for real estate. Normally January picks up a little bit after December but not 2018. We had 92 more listings in the month of January than December and the average days on the market are even longer by 6 days in January. In 2017, January had 293 more listings than December 2016. For 2016, January had 255 more listings. So far the housing market for 2018 is very sluggish with low inventories. More sellers are waiting to sell in spring probably because they have heard the housing market has slowed down. The fact that the average days on the market are 44 days, there must not be very many buyers either. Real estate buyers do tend to wait until more inventories pop up in the spring while keeping an eye out for listings during winter months.
Let’s talk about prices. Simply put, prices aren’t dropping despite the slow market. Median sold price is higher than December 2017 by about 10K and is only lower by 25K from the highest selling month of 2017, which was May. My Portland real estate forecast for 2018 predicts about a 5% value growth for 2018. That means the average home prices will be higher by around 20K throughout the year than 2017. May of 2018 median prices will be somewhere around 445K, which is the figure for all housing including detached single family homes, townhouses, and condos. There is still a big demand for housing in the Portland area. This local demand and lack of supply will still drive the prices up.
Another variable for 2018 is interest rate hike. The entire world is having a panic attack in stock markets because the U.S. is expected to increase interest rates in 2018. Federal Reserve has been very conservative in increasing interest rates so far. The level we may see in 2018 may be more exuberant than what we have seen. 5% mortgage rate may happen by the end of 2018, which means 2018 will be a year buyers can still enjoy a low interest rate if they fast.