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I got a call a couple of weeks ago from a friend who I had not spoken with in a while.  He was into a project, and called for advice. 

Three years ago we helped him purchase a home in the Arbor Lodge neighborhood for around $270,000.   He recently re-financed and learned from his appraisal that his home has appreciated by at least $100,000.  My friend's idea is to invest this equity into an ADU (Accessory Dwelling Unit) in the back yard to that he will rent out.  By my calculations the rent he will collect from the rental unit will cover his entire PITI (principal, interest, taxes, and insurance) payment each month, enabling him to live for free!   Pretty good use for the equity he has in his home, wouldn't you say?

The Tiny House Movement In

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Bidding contests for home buyers in Portland are getting insane. Just this past week, 25 prospective buyers bid on a starter home in the Creston-Kenilworth neighborhood, located in inner southeast--north of Reed College and south of Powell Blvd. The sellers and their agents presented the home perfectly to the marketplace and got a winning offer about 20% over list price. Incredibly, that's 67% above the sellers' original purchase price three years ago.

In terms of square footage, this house sold for roughly $360 per square foot. With approximately one-third of the home being an unfinished basement, accessible only from the outside, the price per square foot of the interior of the home then was nearly $550. Unbelievable! You'd think this home was in a

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WHHOOO HOOOO!!! Flowers are blooming, we're seeing more sun, and people are coming out to enjoy all that is awesome about this city. It's nearly summer and never is there more to do in the City of Roses than this time of year. If you're a long-time resident, you've likely got your favorite summer traditions and memorable places to chill out. Portland newbies are in for a treat! You'll have a blast exploring the many festivals, events, outdoor recreation, and family activities our city offers.

We at Portland Home Team are locals too! We're parents, outdoor enthusiasts, foodies, party-goers, and music lovers as well. To turn you on to just a few of the things you can do during summer, we bring you some of our favorites.

Festivals and Fairs

No

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Portland's urban density has been on our minds a lot lately. With an exploding population and numbers like 750,000 predicted by 2050, we can't help wonder how the city will manage that growth. Where's everybody going to live? And how are we going to maintain our sustainability? Some worry that we're on a fast track to becoming the next San Francisco. Demand for desirable housing is rapidly exceeding supply and the rental market is skyrocketing to insane rates. No wonder people are concerned.

But the fact is, Portland's city core is not that dense compared to other West Coast cities. Current data ranks us eighth in persons per square mile. Our 'burbs are taking up the slack. We're seeing a tremendous housing boom, but a lot of new construction includes

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Ready to put your house on the market and show off all those updates you did? Thinking that the word "remodeled" sounds better than "updated" when advertising to prospective buyers? Hold on! There are important distinctions between the two terms, which can bring unexpected and unintended consequences if you're not familiar with the differences.

Believe it or not, it's the county tax appraiser who draws the line between a house that's been updated vs. remodeled. An updated home has had only cosmetic changes. Doing things like replacing carpet, switching out hardware and light fixtures, and painting the walls all count as updates. But when you start replacing countertops and cabinets, installing showers and sinks, or doing anything else that

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If you engage us to help sell your home, we usually start by consulting you on how to merchandise the house. We always tell sellers to first address any deferred maintenance. These are those big repairs that you've been putting off for one reason or another--yup, that leaky roof really does need fixing. Any hint of deferred maintenance in your home can easily spook buyers into thinking that house is a "money pit."

Once you address those issues, then we'll advise you to prioritize projects according to how potential buyers will experience the home. Think of walking up to a house for the first time, opening the door, then following a natural flow of being at home. You start with first impressions and try to make those buyers have as positive an

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You’re a turn-key kind of buyer but are frustrated by the lackluster market for move-in ready homes. You’d love to get into something bigger, fresher, or in a better location, but having few options that meet your wish list leave you feeling stuck.

Maybe you have more options than you realize. That is, if you consider a home that requires some remodeling or updating to make it every bit as awesome as you want.

We like to think of these homes as simply needing a bit of personal training. Buff ‘em up so to speak. And just like with getting ourselves off the couch and hitting the gym, the trick is to decide what’s most important to you and target one goal at a time.

Let’s break this down…

Say location is your top priority (it is for most

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Leaky PipesThe winter is the time of year for the greatest vigilance in your home. Maintenance around your home is critical as to avoid any damage caused by water and other sources. The most common of damages are caused by groundwater and rain seeping into your home, leaky pipes inside the walls, and pipes bursting from freezing and thawing. If you don’t already, now is probably a good time to purchase renters and home owners insurance. This State Farm Insurance video gives a very informative demonstration on how to shut off your water and insulate pipes. Specials attention should be paid to both indoor and outdoor pipes that are exposed to the cold. These include hose bibs, pipes in outside walls, garden sprinkler lines, swimming pool pipes and pipes in unheated

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