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This Week in Portland October 22 - October 29 2011

The week closes and Saturday rolls in bearing another weekly Portland blog.  Happy weekend and wow, what a week we had. It had seemed as though winter was here for the long haul until last weekend when beautiful, clear skies opened up and the sun came out. I'm pretty sure we've had more than our share of sun spots this week and many opportunities to fall in love with Portland on a stunning autumn day. The leaves are starting to drop in my North Portland neighborhood of Piedmont but on a dog walk this evening, I discovered roses still in bloom. Only in Portland.

Alsea Bay, Oregon

Morning falls on Alsea Bay, Oregon

Crabfest 2011 was charmed from the get-go. The same awesome weather in Portland was present on the coast. Imagine Alsea Bay: sunny, crisp and clear and the dungeness crabs practically jumping onto the boat- if you can imagine a crab jumping, that is. We stayed at the Waldport KOA Campground and just fell in love with the place. A very small, no bathroom cabin -but one that has electrical and heat- costs $52 per evening and the bed was actually comfortable! The campground itself overlooked Alsea Bay and after a nice, long day of crabbing, we spent the evenings with a roaring fire, stars and a moon, some Bridgeport IPA, freshly cooked crab and some s'mores. Heav-en.

Seals at Alsea Bay

Seals sleeping the morning away on Alsea Bay


This Week's Top News in Portland

Newsworthy bits in Portland this week

OccupyPortland is still in full-on occupation of downtown Portland and Portland ranks 2nd Angriest City in America.

Occupy Portland in Chapman Square

Photo credit: Michael Barton

Imagine my delight to come home to my very own compost pail compliments of The City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability. Composting food scraps means less waste in the landfills and helping to create nutrient rich fertilizers. I also learned a lot about what is compostable- for instance, I had no idea that I could compost used pizza boxes, bones and eggshells. 

Halloween is around the corner and our Portland Halloween Events list is growing scarily long. The following are Portland events you're dying to know more about...


Get the full list of Portland Halloween events and have a riot!


Scream at The Beach & Scream Haunted Houses (three locations!)

For 10 years Scream at the Beach has served as the largest, scariest and most popular Halloween Event in the Pacific Northwest, entertaining tens of thousands each year with their pant-wetting horrors. Now entering a new decade, Scream has grown into an even larger menace, opening frightening haunts at three locations within the Metro area: Jantzen Beach, Vancouver Plaza and Mall 205. Frightening Haunted Houses, Scary Carnival Rides, FREE Entertainment and Theme Nights, Spooky Vendors, and more. It's going to be a scream! (Be sure to bring a change of underwear)



The Portland Photo of the Week

The Portland Photo of the Week winner this week is by Michael Barton who shares with us a nice series of OccupyPortland photos which are highly recommended. Get a sense of the peaceful chaos down in Portland right now.

Occupy Portland in Chapman Square

Our Portland Photo of the Week winner gets a gift certificate to a local Portland business of our choosing. Michael will get a $20 gift certificate to local business, Powells Bookstore.

The labyrinth that is Powells Books is the largest bookstore in the United States. Spanning a few city blocks and several floors, you'll wander in an aimless bliss from section to section. You'll need breakfast, a nap, a masseuse and potentially a shrink to help you through your journey through the maze of books and endless color coded corridors.



coava coffee roasters


Featured Portland Events

Here are the featured Portland events this week focusing on events happening this weekend or those just around the corner! Thanks to everyone for adding all the great Portland events to the community events calendar. You can add your own Portland events directly to the events calendar for free (pleased read our terms of service first). Just click "Add an Event" and fill in the details.



Beyond Bizarre Walking Tour

October 13, 2011 at 7pm to October 31, 2011 at 10pm – Old Town / Chinatown If you've seen the "Ghost Hunters", "Ghost Adventures", or "Paranormal State" TV shows, then this is the right adventure for you! Unexplained mysteries, ghostly adventures, and spooky stories aboundOrganized by Gary Corbin | Type: halloween, event



Wooden Shoe Pumpkin Fest 2011

October 10, 2011 to October 31, 2011  Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm The 2nd annual fall Pumpkin Fest will celebrate the harvest season from grinding wheat to learning about the crops grown on the farm. Visitors will have a chance to travel the giant hay maze, the 5 aOrganized by | Type: festival



Portland Pumpkin Farm & Twilight Maze

October 11, 2011 to October 31, 2011  Sauvie Island Sunday through Thursday from 9am to 6pm and Friday and Saturday from 9am to 9pm. "Portland Pumpkin Farm & Twilight Maze is having its Annual Pumpkin Harvest at Bella Organic on Sauvie Island! BriOrganized by | Type: festival



Fright Town: Portland Haunted Houses

October 12, 2011 to October 31, 2011  Memorial Coliseum The three most horrifying haunted houses in the whole Pacific Northwest, FrightTown returns to the Veterans Memorial Coliseum on Friday, October 7th! A festival of fear awaits you at every turn! LastOrganized by | Type: haunted, houses!




Wednesdays Portland Farmers Market

July 2, 2011 at 10am to October 26, 2011 at 2pm –Downtown Dates Wednesdays, May 4th through October 26th Times 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Location The Wednesday Downtown Market is located in the South Park Blocks at Shemanski Park between SW Salmon & SWOrganized by Portland Farmers Market | Type: 




Milburn's Haunted Manor

October 15, 2011 to October 31, 2011  "Milburns" Haunted House / Milburn's Haunted Manor 2011 - We dare you to come to our house! Milburn's Hall of FameMilburn's Haunted Manor 2011.Our 9th year!  AdmissionHaunted Manor Organized by Milburns | Type: portland halloween





13th Door Haunted House in Portland

October 15, 2011 to October 31, 2011  "13th Door" Portland Oregon's #1 Haunted House is the 13th Door Haunted House, rated PG-13. Scary, frightening, horrifying and the best ever haunt in Portland. The 13th Door Zombies are scratching at the wallsOrganized by 13 | Type: portland halloween




Looking for something else? We have a ton of other local Portland events on the calendar. Please feel free to add your own as well.


Mt. Hood Oregon

The best time of the year to head to Mt Hood is upon us. Mt Hood is a dormant volcano located 50 miles southeast of Portland, Oregon. Surrounded by a natural forest, Mt Hood is a staggering 11,245 feet high, the highest peak in Oregon. During summer, Mount Hood is a popular destination for hikers and backpackers, and offers many activities and attractions. By winter, the mountain becomes a hotspot for skiing and winter sports. Visible for literally hundreds of miles around, it's estimated around 10,000 people attempt to reach the summit of the Mt Hood each year. Mount Hood is home to glaciers, commonly referred to as snow fields, sitting about 6,000ft, just above the tree line, giving the mountain an intriguing contrast in color and formation. Mount Hood is home to many different activities, which differ by season. Mount Hood is one of Oregon's top tourist destinations in the state and never fails to impress those who visit, whatever the season.

Learn more about Mt Hood and her splendor including great outdoor activities


Southwest Hills Real Estate Report

by Ross Seligman


The Southwest neighborhood is located in what is popularly known as the "West Hills" in Portland. The hilly terrain and lush nature parks in this area create stunning views from many of the homes. Depending on which area you are in, you may have a panoramic view of downtown Portland, and on a clear day it is possible to see Mt. Hood, Mt. Adams, and Mt. Saint Helens in the distance.  To learn more, click here.


Are you keeping an eye on Southwest Hills or is it your neighborhood?  Check out this link for a monthly updating real estate chart for this neighborhood.

If you are looking for homes in the Southwest Hills neighborhood, visit this link where you can search for homes by particular neighborhood: Click Here

On to the report:

Here is the overall chart of inventory, sold, and pending for the Southwest Hills neighborhood in the last 15 months:

In September 2011, there were 4 closed sales, 3 pending sales, and 40 homes on the market in the Southwest Hills Neighborhood.

One year change from September 2010 to September 2011:

Inventory (how many homes on the market for sale): Down 28.6%

Homes sold: Down 33.3%

Homes pending sale: Down 50%


Chart for average price per square footage:


In the past 15 months, the average price per square footage in the Southwest Hills neighborhood has been between $150 and $253/sq. ft. In September 2011, the average price per square foot in the Southwest Hills neighborhood was $150.


One year change from September 2010 to September 2011:

Change in Price Per Square Foot:
September 2010: 244

September 2011: 150

Percentage Change: Down 38.4%

Days on Market, Sold/List Price:


This chart is showing us two things. First, how many days on the market that a home is spending, on average, before being sold. In September 2011, the average time on market for a home in the Southwest Hills neighborhood was 132 days.

The second thing that this chart is showing you is what percentage of the listing price the owners actually are getting when the house is sold.  This is a great indication of the pressure on prices.  In September 2011, sellers in Southwest Hills received, on average, 88% of their original listing price.

More stats for you:

Change from September 2010 to September 2011:

Time on Market: Up 12.8%
Sold/List price % difference: Down 8%

Average price for sale vs. average price of sold:


This chart shows us what the average listing was and what the average sale was. In September 2011, the average price of a house on the market in Southwest Hills was $912,000. The average sale was $628,000.

More stats over one year:

Average active price: Up 5.6%
Average sold price:  Down 3.2%

Months of Inventory:

Months of inventory gives a time line of how long it would take for all of the current listings to sell.  Anything above 4 months is considered a buyers market.  This figure is a good indicator of supply and demand.  September 2011 in the Southwest Hills neighborhood had 10 months of inventory.

By the way, this does NOT mean that it will take 10 months for your home to sell. That figure was, on average in September, 132 days.  Inventory is a figure that means that, if not another home were to come on the market in Southwest Hills from this point forward, in 10 months there would not be another home to sell.  They would all be sold.


In my monthly Portland real estate report, I always talk about how each individual neighborhood is a micro-market. The first thing you will notice about individual neighborhoods as compared to the overall Portland reports are that the numbers can be wildly different month to month. Basically, the bigger the pool of data you are working with, the smoother the stats become. As we focus on smaller areas, many different things can happen month to month.


If you are looking to buy or sell in a particular neighborhood, the most crucial information that you need to know is what is going on in that neighborhood. In this situation, the overall Portland market report is less important and the national real estate report is just about useless. This posting is a real estate report for the Southwest Hills neighborhood of all homes in all price ranges. Feel free to request particular neighborhoods in which you are interested in buying or selling and I am be happy to do a report, just contact me on this forum or at

Visit our website where you can contact us and search all Portland
Metro Area homes for sale from the RMLS in Portland, OR, including school and neighborhood reports:



Photo credit : Gerry Villani


Homes for sale in Portland

3530 NE GLISAN ST Portland, OR 97232 - Laurelhurst - $499,500

See the full listing here.


5230 NE WASCO ST Portland, OR 97213 - Rose City Park - $349,900

See the full listing here.


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