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Portland Blog: This Week in Portland November 10 - November 17 2012


Happy Saturday, Portlanders and welcome to another edition of our weekly Portland blog. What a week this has been! The election is OVER. Whether or not you are pleased with the outcome, I am pretty sure that not a single one of us will miss the political ads, commercials, flyers stuffed under the mat and in the mailbox or that all too frequent 7pm knock on the door revealing an earnest face wanting to discuss "who are you voting for and why?". Ah, silence and a look toward the holidays. Thanksgiving in two weeks? How can that be?


We were saddened to discover that a long-time Portland icon died this week. Kirk Reeves was known to many of us as a part of the Portland landscape. I can't remember a time he wasn't there. Kirk was the fellow who sat on the upper ramp of the Hawthorne bridge heading toward SE Portland. He almost always wore white, a funny hat and played his trumpet and often had a slew of different toys laying at his feet. He held up traffic, entertaining the bikes, the walkers and the single-file lane of cars trying to make the dash across the bridge. He delighted many. May you rest in peace, Kirk. A part of Portland went with you.


Photo courtesy of Facebook


The Portland Video of the Week

In Memory of a Portland icon: Kirk Reeves




Powell's Bookstore Picks

We love Powells!   Portland Book Review of the Day   Portland eBooks   Powell's Author Interviews



The Portland Photo of the Week

The Portland Photo of the Week is by a great local photographer, Rachel Carlson. This stunning photo of the St. Johns Bridge is a gem. In Rachel's words: "AS IF you needed to see another photo of the St Johns Bridge. I watched the sun do it's thing for almost an hour and positioned myself so it wasn't too blinding. Thought I would show daylight savings time who was in charge today. A bit washed out with the natural light yet I will never get tired of photographing THIS bridge."

It's all in the lighting.


Our Portland Photo of the Week winner gets a $20 gift certificate to a local Portland business of our choosing. This week, the local Portland business we are recognizing is Coava Coffee Roasters.

About Coava Coffee Roasters:  Coava is a family of hardworking people who are passionate about excellent coffee. We source, roast and brew the best single origin coffees in the world. What began as a dream has evolved into a roastery unlike any other.

Coava began in a garage in North Portland, where Matt Higgins roasted coffees with total precision. Because Matt had worked in the industry for a decade, he knew Coava couldn’t roast exceptional coffee without sourcing from the best farmers in the world. Today we are proud to feature single origin coffees from meticulous, hard-working farmers who take risks to work exclusively with us.

Our name, Coava, was inspired by Englishman William Biddulph, who traveled to Turkey in the 1600s and discovered that “coava” was a term for unroasted coffee, a word previously unknown in the Western world. Raw coffee is at the heart of what we do. We strive to create beautiful roast profiles based on the inherent qualities of each unroasted coffee. That’s why we only roast single origins, focusing on quality, intensity and balance in the cup.

As a result, Coava is known for roasting some of the highest scoring coffees in the world, a craft we humbly practice in our roastery in Portland, Oregon. 


humbly made



Portlandia - Gerry Villani


Featured Portland Events this Week

Here's the latest roundup of our featured Portland events for you to enjoy!  Mark your calendars and feel free to add your own!

Add your own events to our Portland events calendar! Its totally free. If we like it, we'll include it in this weekly Portland blog.

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Four More

by Rob Creighton Garrison

I feel I should preface this entry by saying that I'm an unabashed Obama supporter.  There may be some few of you reading this who supported the opposition and may take umbrage at this post, thinking that I'm crowing in victory and thumbing my nose at you.  There's no way you can prove that.  I even closed my blinds and stuck some electrical tape over my display's camera.  So you'll have to take my word for it.



The missus and I tried to go to Doug Fir Tuesday night, to meet with friends and have a meal and a pint or two and watch the election results as they materialized.  It didn't work out. No offense meant to that fine establishment, but we just flat didn't realize what we would find there.  The density of humanity in the building was such that you couldn't even fall down in there, or if you actually managed it you would take a six-foot radius of persons with you.  We Portlanders, man: we love to drink and we love to watch our guy win, you know?


We tried to hang tough, but after half an hour and a vain search for our friends, and much texting while constantly having to side-step other wandering souls, we admitted defeat and retreated to Horse Brass Pub.  We had a nice dinner and a glass each of stout, then set out for home.  Turns out none of our friends had made it to Doug Fir that night anyway.  Hmph.


On the way to and fro, we passed polling places.  Long lines of the devout were queued and taking part, with more crossing the street and striding the sidewalks to join.  Looking out at them, knowing that many of them might be there for hours, I was struck by how very cool it was to see people of all races and ages putting aside our modern concept of inconvenience to participate in something that is greater than themselves and for the public good.  I love it when my fellow citizens remind me that we're not all simply ambulatory appetites in search of instant gratification.  







Yeah, it seemed like a magic night after the tense knuckle-gnawing leading up to it. It seemed so close, impossibly, ridiculously, appallingly, scary close. How? Are we truly this divided? Is there really this philosophical chasm that exists? How are we not asunder, or about to be, when the numbers indicate such a social and political gulf?


Well. Numbers, shnumbers. There were those who abstained, stayed home, let the savage ad campaigns roll them in the surf, found reasons to assume the effort was too great and for no immediate personal gain, or who felt that the difference between the candidates was essentially no difference at all. And then there were folks like me, like my wife, like most of our friends (I hope ALL of them; no one has outright told me they didn't) who took part, who believed it was important to help decide and to be heard and understood, who voted because they know a vote cast is a shout above the mopey murmur of impotent pebble-scuffing and toothless complaint.


We deserve to be congratulated. We deserve to congratulate ourselves.


A note to Romney supporters. If you voted, good for you, and I mean it. You took the process and the duty seriously. I don't agree with the direction you want to go, but you weren't so smug in your confidence nor so convinced of futility that you let your neighbors take the responsibility while you stayed home to grumble about how the television coverage interfered with your viewing pleasure. I salute you.


Now, for the next four years, let's be as good to, and for, one another as we can find it in our hearts and minds to be.




                                                                         Yeah.  I know.



Read Rob's original post and comment back here:





November 2012 Portland Oregon Real Estate Market Report: What's Happening?

By Ross and Leah Seligman


Here is a chart of all homes for sale, pending for sale, and sold in Portland, Oregon for the last 15 months:

In October 2012, inventory has remained steady with 2436 homes on the market.   In October 2012, 746 homes sold and 828 are pending for sale. 

Yearly change from October 11 to October 12:

Inventory is Down 25.3%

Closed Sales are Up 22.5%.

Pending sales are Up 23.2%.


Chart for average price per square footage:

In the past 15 months, the average price per square foot in Portland, Oregon has been between $141 and $162. In October 2012, the average price per square foot in Portland was $162.

Yearly change from October 11 to October 12:  Up 10.7%


Days on market and 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 all of Multnomah County, in all price ranges, a home is taking, on average, 61 days to sell. The other thing that this chart shows is what percentage of listing price the home, on average, is selling at. This is a great indicator of pressure on prices. In October 2012, sellers were getting, on average, 95% of their original asking price.

Yearly change from October 11 to October 12:

Average time it takes to sell a home has decreased 28.2%.

The percentage of original listing price that was paid has increased 3%.


Average price for sale vs. average price of sold:

In October 2012, the average price of a home that sold was $302,000.  The average price of a home that was listed was $382,000.  This does not mean that a home that was listed for $382,000 sold for $302,000.  The listed homes didn't necessarily sell.  For the sold/list price percentage, look at the 'Days on Market' graph.  In October 2012, this figure was 95%.

Yearly change from October 11 to October 12:
The average price of a home listed has increased 3.5%.
The average price of a home sold has increased 11%.
Months of inventory:
Months of inventory gives a timeline of how long it would take for all of the current listings to sell. Anything above 4 months is considered a buyers market. In October 2012, this figure was 3.3 months based on closed sales. Portland is currently, on average, a balanced market. This does NOT mean that it will take, on average, 3.3 months for your home to sell. That number was, on average in all price ranges, 61 days.   It means that, if not a single listing were to come on the market in Portland from this moment, it would take 3.3 months for all available homes to sell before there would be none left.
Yearly change from October 11 to October 12:
The months of inventory figure has decreased 39%.
About the report:


This is a comparison of the past 15 months (including a percentage change analysis for the last 12 months) for all of Portland and are taken directly from the RMLS. What follows is my own analysis of these statistics. For our purposes, I thought it best to analyze Portland as a whole. Each neighborhood, however, is a little micro-universe and has its own market. Changing the parameters of the zip codes, price variables, or time periods can lead to very different results. This analysis is of all homes sold in all price ranges in Portland, Oregon. If you have any questions about specific zip codes, or any questions about the market in general, please reply to this forum with those questions or feel free to contact me at: Since Portland is a neighborhood city, you can now search by "Irvington, Alberta, etc.". You can check it out by clicking here.

This information doesn't matter if you have a particular neighborhood in mind since Portland neighborhoods are their own micro-markets. If you have one in mind to buy or are selling your home, please request a report for that neighborhood and I am happy to post it on this blog or send it to you.  The complete Portland report is useful for an overall snapshot of the Portland market.  Hey everyone, I want to know what you think of these reports. Too many stats? Just right? Something missing? Let me know so I can make these more useful for you. What are your thoughts about real estate right now? What do you think of the information in this report? Post to this blog so we can discuss. 


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:



Best Deals in Portland this Week

 Every week Ross and Leah blog their Portland real estate listings and we share them here so you can see what's on the Portland real estate market.

2224 NE 46TH AVE Portland, OR 97213 - Hollywood - $699,900

 Click image to view full listing



1812 SE 29TH AVE Portland, OR 97214 - Richmond - $539,900

Click image to view full listing



5318 N OBERLIN ST Portland, OR 97203 - University Park - $439,950

Click image to view full listing



Visit our website where you can contact us and search all Portland metro area homes for sale and real estate from the RMLS, including neighborhood and school information:


Did you know there are nearly 100 unique Portland neighborhoods?  Read and learn all about these interesting urban communities.


Willamette River and downtown

Willamette River and Downtown Portland by Michael Barton


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