Summary: The decision to buy a house can be a tough one, especially when you’re trying to time it right. Should you buy a home in Portland in 2019, or wait until 2020 to make a move?
We’re at the midpoint of the year, which means a lot of home buyers in the Portland, Oregon metro area are already looking ahead to 2020. And many of them have the same question:
Does it make sense to buy a house in Portland right now, or would I be better off waiting until 2020?
Answering this kind of question requires equal parts soul-searching and market research. To help you with the market aspects, we’ve compiled some recent stats and trends. The following information will help you weigh the pros and cons of buying a home in Portland now, versus waiting until 2020.
Related: Free Home Buyer Guide
Buying a Home in Portland Now, Versus 2020
The first thing you should know is that home values across the Portland, Oregon metro area are still much higher than the national average. While the national average home price is $226,800, the median price in Portland is currently $418,000.
That said, home prices in Portland dipped slightly from the month before and have actually been somewhat stagnant over the past couple of years. Zillow also predicts that prices will decrease by another 2% within the next year.
That said, no one can predict future home-price trends with complete accuracy. So it’s difficult to say. It’s still possible for prices to rise into 2020, as real estate increases in value over time, despite some fluctuations along the way.
A Cooling Trend Ahead?
Housing analysts and economists are predicting smaller gains for the Portland real estate market over the next year or so. The general consensus is that home values in the area are beginning to slow down.
This is not the result of weakening demand. On the contrary, there is still a high level of demand and competition within the Portland real estate market. Rather, the cooling trend is a function of housing affordability.
Home prices in the area have risen much faster than wages and incomes, and this kind of trend is generally unsustainable over the long term. So it appears that the real estate market is “self correcting” in the form of slower price growth.
Housing Inventory Still Remains Relatively Tight
There is still something of an inventory and shortage in the area, and this will affect those buying a home in Portland now and in 2020.
A “balanced” real estate market is considered to be one with around six months worth of supply. When supply falls well below that level, you have a sellers’ market situation. This is what we are seeing in the Portland area at present. In June 2019, when this article was published, the city had 4.2 months’ worth of supply.
Home buyers who purchase a house in Portland now or in 2020 may still encounter stiff competition from other buyers.
The city is attracting new residents from all over the country, particularly those who are fleeing the exorbitant home prices in California. The resulting population growth has boosted demand for housing, putting upward pressure on house values.
Related: Best Neighborhoods in Portland
Will Mortgage Rates Rise Later in 2019?
Mortgage rates are another big consideration for those who are considering buying a home in Portland in 2020. The question on everyone’s mind is, will mortgage rates rise between now and 2020?
Interest rates are even harder to predict than home prices. But that doesn’t stop people from trying.
Each month, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) publishes a finance forecast that includes a variety of economic indicators.
According to the MBA, interest rates for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with conforming loan balances retreated to 4.12%. According to the Mortgage Banker Association (MBA), interest rates for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with conforming loan balances retreated to 4.12%. And although demand is still relatively strong, there’s probably some restraint from buyers because of economic uncertainty.
Even though interest rates have dipped slightly from the month before, they’re still higher than where they were last year. And if rates do rise gradually over the coming months, people buying a home in Portland in 2020 could encounter higher borrowing costs. And this might coincide with higher home prices as well.
Here’s the bottom line to all of this: Nobody can predict future mortgage rates or home prices with total accuracy. But current market conditions suggest that housing costs in Portland, Oregon will likely rise over the coming months. So a case could be made for buying a home now versus 2020 — at least where costs are concerned.
Disclaimer: This article includes various forecasts and projections relating to the Portland housing market in 2019 in 2020. These reports were produced by third parties not associated with our company. We have compiled and presented them here as an educational service to our readers.
Related: Why Now Maybe Great Time to Buy
Looking to Apply For a Mortgage?
If you have questions about Portland, Oregon mortgage loan eligibility requirements, or other aspects of the program, we have the answers. Want to get pre-approved for a home loan, or request a mortgage rate quote? We can help.
Sammamish Mortgage is a local, family-owned company based in Portland, Oregon and surrounding areas. We serve the entire state, as well as the broader Pacific Northwest region Washington, Colorado & Idaho. Please contact us if you have mortgage-related questions. Last Updated: