Bend Real Estate Prices Continue Upward Trajectory
Bend residents who have lived in Central Oregon over the past decade have seen extreme changes in the real estate market. Bend single family home prices escalated during the boom years of 2005-2007 and crashed during the great recession of 2008-2011; the low point for Bend Or real estate was in the winter of 2011. Since this time, Bend housing prices have steadily climbed with roughly 10% gain each year as the market recovered. Today, the prices for Bend homes for sale are back to pre-recession levels with the average asking price for a Bend single family home at $682,000 and the average sold price at $467,000; these figures are 30.9% and 17.6% over the same quarter 2006.*
As prices continue to rise, the question needs to be asked "How high can Bend home prices go?" For those who remember the prices of the recession, when the average single family home in Bend sold for less than $250,000, having to spend more than $200,000 more for an average single family home in Bend seems excessive. The Bend City Council has been discussing the lack of affordable housing in Bend for the past 5 years, but little has been done to address the true issue - the urban growth boundary and the availability of developable land. A great part of this problem can be attributed to Oregon land use laws which require approval from the state when a city needs to expand their city limits and incorporate new land. Oregon denied Bend's original request for 10,000 acres 10 years ago and last fall finally approved roughly 2000 acres - this despite Bend's population growing by roughly 20,000 people during this same time. The state wants Bend to grow in a denser and more compact manner than it has historically.
In addition, a driving force to Bend housing prices continues to be the draw of its lifestyle. As long as people want to move to Bend, and the amount of homes available to purchase continues to be limited, basic supply and demand economics dictates housing prices rise. Bend's average home price is now over $220 a foot. However, when compared with several feeder markets to Bend, in particular parts of California's Bay Area where older single family homes sell over $1000 a foot, Bend still looks cheap.
As long as people keep moving to Bend, the demand for housing will continue. And with a limited amount of land to build new Bend homes, as long as there is no major local, state or national crisis, we should anticipate Bend home prices will keep going up.
* Figures from Central Oregon Multiple Listing Service
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