If you have followed my blog for any length of time you will know that from time to time I will come out with a Value Alert…here is my Covid/quarantine value alert!
Unit 1804, now priced at $1,495,000, a lower level penthouse at Meriwether in South Waterfront! This unit is not only large, 2541 sq. ft. , but also ranks high for style points as well. Ironically, part of the design is what has hurt the sale of this beautiful unit! This unit was custom designed by one of my favorite designers in town, Jeffrey Lamb. The quality is of the highest available and tastefully done. One issue, I believe, is it is a little dark with the all of the custom woodwork and the imported Brazilian granite counter tops. I have shown this unit three times now to my clients and three times the feedback was the same… it’s just too dark and they all would have replaced the green counter tops! My suggestion, and Jeff Lamb may hate to hear this… replace the beautiful green Brazilian counter tops with a and bright white quartz counter top and increase the island size, also with quartz! This would make a huge difference in the brightness of this unit and, I believe, change the look dramatically. While I do think the current counter tops are beautiful, they are very specific and attractive to a far less percentage of buyers!
Sometimes buyers will sacrifice size for higher quality. No need to sacrifice here! With this unit…you get both! Let’s compare this unit to a neighboring unit at Atwater, unit #1906 also priced at $1,495,000. #1906 is only 1896 sq. ft. ( 645 sq. ft. smaller than 1804!) The quality is basically original construction finishes, which are nice at Atwater, but nothing compared to the custom quality of the remodeled #1804! The layout of #1804 is also superior. The spacious kitchen is central to the open living spaces and offers fantastic views where as the kitchen on #1906 is tucked on the backside of the unit and almost galley like with limited views.
One of the negatives of #1804 is that eventually, OHSU will build on the lot to the north and block some of the views. Again, comparing to #1906, Meriwethers East tower is already blocking some of the views of #1906 to the north so it is very similar in views..
I have been selling condos for a long time now and one thing I have seen is that when the market is rising, buyer’s are more willing to pay up for a nicely remodeled unit. When the market is declining…not so much! This is what is happening now. The condo markets are almost 20% off from the highs in late 2018. Another problem with #1804 is that I believe it was way overpriced from the beginning ($1,900,000). This may not have been the fault of the agent. Many times when an extensive remodel has been done, seller’s tend to believe the value is much higher than what the market will pay. Now, after multiple price reductions and 15 months on the market…the sharks will start circling!
I believe the purchase of this unit will be at a good value for the buyer! I do not believe that price will be at $1,495,000 but I believe we are closer to where it will eventually sell. Because of the circumstances, the new buyers of this beautiful condo are going to have a condo with exceptional finishes and a lot space! I believe if the seller would have replaced the counter tops with a white quartz or light marble, it probably would have already sold. Now you have the opportunity to pick it up at a decent value and make those changes yourself!
If you would like to view this special unit, please give me a call.
Brad Golik is a condominium specialist focusing on the luxury condo markets in the Pearl District, South Waterfront and the downtown Cultural Area. You can reach him at 503-896-8856 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Do a condo search at: https://bradgolik.luxecir.com/condo-search
It’s that time of year for many, graduation! How does that relate to real estate? For those newly empty nesters, it may mean that it is time to downsize. Many of the condo buyers I have worked with over the years were in this very same position. One of the common dilemmas they each face is if they are able to go from a 3,000—4,500 square foot home , down to a 1,300—2,000 square foot condo. Now the one thing many are giving up is a spacious yard…sometimes this is a blessing in disguise. Many decide they are ok spending more time on the golf course and less time pulling weeds!
Adjusting to smaller spaces. The one thing I always ask potential buyer’s is where do they spend their time in their current house? The most common answers…the kitchen, the family room and the master bedroom. This my friends is a condo! Do you really need that 3rd and 4th bedroom? Do you really need that 1500 square foot
finished basement that rarely gets use? What most people find is that they can easily adjust to the smaller spaces and what they really enjoy is the new benefit of more time to be doing what they enjoy and less time slaving over a large yard.
Another added perk to condo living… nearby restaurants! While many of you may enjoy your time in the kitchen, after years of trying to figure what to cook for your family every night, it is nice to have the option to just go down an elevator and walk to you favorite eatery!
Another thing I see with those that choose to downsize, selling the big home in the suburbs and buying two smaller condos. Many buy a condo in the downtown area and possibly a second in areas like Palm Springs or Scottsdale Az. Now this may be a luxury for many, but as the kids leave home, many are ok with having a little more “Me Time”.
Brad Golik is a condominium specialist with Total Property Resources and LuxuryCondosofPortland.com
You can set up condo tours with Brad by calling him at 503-896-8856
If outdoor living is important to you, here is a condo that is a must see! This Pearl District loft has 2 decks, the first on the main level, while not large, it does offer enough space for the BBQ and it’s close to the kitchen. The second deck offers enough space for both a sitting area and dining area and has views of the Freemont Bridge as well as the city lights to the South. Kick back and enjoy your outdoor time with a glass of wine and a comfy fire! To see this beautiful, 2 level unit at Streetcar Lofts, call Brad Golik at 503-896-8856
How were the numbers for condominiums in 2017? Stay tuned as we will be posting year end numbers on Portland’s condo, loft and townhome markets!
Brad Golik is a condo specialist and can be found at his new company Total Property Resources. You can reach him at 503-896-8856 or at email@example.com Visit his awesome website at http://www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com .
Brad Golik is a condominium specialist in downtowns Pearl District and South Waterfront. It does not cost you to work with a specialist…it pays!
Today I am listing a beautiful penthouse at Pacifica Tower! Enjoy floor to ceiling windows in this corner unit. One of the best floor plans available at Pacifica Tower. Located in the NW corner of the building, this unit offers panoramic views of the Willamette River, Portland’s West Hills and the twinkling city lights. This home features two very large bedrooms and two decks!
If you are in the market for a condo in this price range, give me a call to set up a private showing of this fantastic penthouse.
Brad Golik is a condominium specialist with Pearl District Properties with a focus on the high end of the market. If you are looking to buy or sell, call Brad at 503-896-8856.
Today I lost a listing for being honest! One thing you will always get from me is my honest opinion. Whether it is my opinions that I write about in my blog, or my opinions in what it takes to get a condo sold for top dollar. The key words here are “TOP DOLLAR”. You have heard me say many times that “Any agent can sell your condo…but at what price?” To get the highest price in the sale of a condo, I have a pretty good feel for things that need to be done to get that top dollar. First and foremost… top notch marketing! Yes, even in a hot seller’s market it is important.
I mentioned that I lost a listing for being honest. This condo would have been priced in the 1.4M range. This particular condo had amazing river and bridge views. However, the furnishings (many antiques) were not the type that would “Wow” a buyer when they walked in the door. In fact, I believe the opposite affect would take place. I have often said, in the higher end of the market, buyers want the “Wow” affect when they walk in the door. This was a unit that had potential for a huge “Wow” factor that, with staging, I believe would have captured a very good price for the seller’s… if marketed correctly.
Telling sellers what they want to hear to get a listing is nothing new in our industry. I see it happen all of the time with agents that “Buy Listings”… in other words, they tell the seller it is worth more than what another agent said what it was worth because they know the seller will choose the agent with the higher price. Then, the condo stays on the market because it is priced too high and then the agent eventually beats up the sellers to drop the price ( the price the other agent had honestly told the seller’s) Then, because the unit becomes stale, the lowball offers begin to come in. My point here…be careful of agents that tell you what you want to hear. You should be more open to an agent that is honest and not just telling you what you want to hear just to get the listing. The listing above, well I believe the listing above will net the seller’s about $100,000 less than what it could get by staging and using good marketing. This is a lot of money! I felt so strongly about it in this case that I offered to pay for the staging.
The sellers made the comment to me that these were expensive antiques. One thing I have learned in this business is that the cost of something really has no relevance as to how it adds to the value of something. I have seen wallpaper, for example, where an owner spent a fortune and thought it was the most beautiful thing in the world… but everybody else hated it! In the unit above, I truly believe the sellers would net close to 100k more by staging this unit. In addition, the staging will help buyers focus on the beautiful unit…and take their eyes away from the kitchen! Remember the wallpaper above? Well the owners of this unit painted over the cabinets (DIY) in an un- attractive color that shows the wood grain through the paint. They also ripped out beautiful slab granite and replaced it with a inferior artificial product (blue speckled ) that is just not at the level expected for buyers in a unit like this in a building like this.
In the end, the sellers went with an agent that agreed with them and said what they wanted to hear. As a seller, do you want the most that you can get in the sale of your condo… or do you want to work with an agent that is being nice and says what you want to hear? The sellers choose an agent with inferior marketing to what I offer… and the truth is on this unit, to get top dollar, they are going to need great marketing!
I believe an agent should be nice… and tell you what you NEED to hear!
Today, like I do on most Tuesday’s, I went to a few brokers’ open houses to look at some new listings. After viewing a new penthouse on the market, I stopped in at a nearby coffee shop. In the coffee shop were a group of real estate agents who had also gone to the same open house. These agents were not condo agents, I know because I did not recognize any of them! What I heard come out of the mouth was not surprising because they just do not understand the urban market. The penthouse that these agents were talking about was the new listing at the Crane building priced at $1,850,000. I heard on of the agents say that she has not seen any of the other penthouses in the Pearl but she thought this one was “Exceptional and priced very well!” The others with her nodded their heads in agreement. The first thought that came to my had was…REALLY?…Is this what they would say to potential buyers that they would show the unit to?
For what it is worth, here are my thoughts on this penthouse unit priced at $1,850,000. This unit was on the market one and a half years ago priced at $1,950,000 and it did not sell then. While this unit has very nice finishes, here are my reasons why I think it is priced too high. First…and most important, anything priced above $1,500,000 should not be a total fishbowl…and this unit is! Before when it was listed, you had neighbors from Avenue lofts and Irving Street lofts looking down into your 7th floor unit. Now, directly across the street to the west is a brand new office tower that takes away your views of the west hills, takes away a lot of natural daylight and also adds hundreds of office workers that can now look directly into your unit! There MUST be a discount on price for the huge lack of privacy!
Some of the other negatives of this unit are that it has low ceiling height and it is a pretty choppy floor plan which gives you the feel that it is smaller than its 2239 square feet. At 836 a square foot, a buyer should get way more for their money than what is offered here. In one of my recent posts I discussed the great buy my client got on a penthouse purchase at The Elizabeth. This unit closed at $2,200,000 (fully furnished) or $667 a square foot. This unit is far superior than the penthouse at the Crane building in many, many ways. It is a much higher floor, 14 as opposed to 7 so you are above most surrounding buildings and don’t have neighbors looking down on you (something most penthouse buyers NEVER want!) The floor plan at the Elizabeth was much more desirable. In addition, both units had equal deck space for outdoor living but at the Crane penthouse, the outdoor space is almost unusable because of the freeway noise that is only a block away! Even if my client would have gotten the Elizabeth penthouse at a higher price, say $2,500,000, the price per square foot would still have been much lower at $757 a foot. There is a huge difference in why the buyers at The Cosmopolitan are paying above $800 a square foot…that is the privacy that comes with being 25 floors or higher. Your odds of having another building going up next to you and blocking your views are much less, this is why buyers were willing to pay a premium. But, the Crane penthouse being only 7 floors up, there is no way it deserves the premium of pricing that it is at, especially with all of those new office workers looking down at you!. If I am the listing agent of this penthouse, I am hoping that one of those agents at the coffee shop brings a buyer and makes an offer… because, based on their comments, they truly don’t know any better!
In a post I wrote a little while back I mentioned that even in a hot market, where everyone seems to believe that there are no deals in the market, that sometimes deals do come along. Today is one of those days! If you are in the market for a 2 bedroom unit with over 1400 square feet, this is your lucky day! Just a short walk north of the Fields Park in the Pearl District, you will find a wonderful 8 story condominium tower called Pacifica. I have sold many units in this building and know it probably better than any agent in town. Two days ago a unit came on the market priced at $575,000. This 3rd story unit has a spacious layout, 2 and half baths and a very large deck that looks over the Willamette River. The reason I know it is drastically under priced is that two years ago I sold the same unit, two floors up, for $575,000! In this time the market is certainly up more than 10-15%. Taking that into consideration, you would be looking at a price of $610,00– to $632,000. The current price, at $391 a square foot is VERY low to the comps in this building. I sold 4 or 5 units in this building between $418 to $450 a square foot last year! I will be pricing another unit there soon and we were going to be looking at $500 a square foot. This might be a little more difficult now with the agent selling unit #303 so far below market value.
Again, for those who are patient, and work with an agent that knows the condo market, there are good values that do come up in the market. Unit #303 at Pacifica Tower is one of them!
If you are a buyer and looking for a great 2 bedroom unit, there is not another unit under $750,000 in the market right now that I feel beats this one.
If you would like to go view this unit, give me a call today and I will set up a showing! Call me at 503-896-8856
Yesterday after finishing a showing at Atwater Place in South Waterfront, I stopped at the local coffee shop to check emails and have a cup of coffee. While there, I had made a couple calls. Afterward, the lady sitting at the table next to me struck up a conversation with me as she heard me talking real estate. (This happens often as people love to talk real estate!). The first thing she said to me was “Do you know that an agent opened a new real estate office here in South Waterfront?” I said yes, I was well aware of it. She asked me if it makes it hard on me to do business here with this agent doing so much focused marketing at Atwater Place, Meriwether and The John Ross. She also asked me if this agent has an advantage because of the location?
Here was my answer to her questions.
Sometimes location is important (we have always heard location, location location!) In terms of hiring an agent to list your condo in South Waterfront, having that South Waterfront office location is not important. What is important is the number of eyeballs ( more specifically, BUYER’S) that you can get that listing in front of. Here is the big difference. My office, Pearl District Properties, is in the heart of the Pearl District on the most walkable street in the Pearl. Every week we get hundreds of people pulling our listing flyers as they walk by. From New York to the San Francisco Bay area, we speak to buyers that are often in town for a few days looking to purchase a condo. How you ask, does this help seller’s in South Waterfront? These people are here to buy a condo. They have heard about the Pearl District because it is fairly well known across the country. Many of these people begin their search with the idea that they will buy in the Pearl. Many find that it is not the neighborhood for them. In fact, I often suggest to them to expand their search to a few buildings downtown and to South Waterfront, especially to those wanting a quieter neighborhood with a little less hustle and bustle.
To put it simply, if you are a condo owner in South Waterfront that is looking to sell, you will get far greater exposure to actual buyers! In addition, we are also condominium specialist with an office that has been around since 2002. I believe my internet marketing is second to none (which is also hugely important!) PearlDistrictProperties.com is one of the most visited real estate websites in town for condominium buyer’s. In addition, I will feature your listing on one of my many “Search Specific” websites including www.AtwaterPlaceCondominium.com, TheMeriwetherCondominium.com, JohnRossCondominium.com as well as SouthWaterfrontCondominium.com.
With these websites we do a ton of cross marketing from my other 50+ condo websites. After all, someone looking at a quality building on the water, such as PacificaTowerCondo.com, will also click on a link on that website, to one of my South Waterfront websites and look at your listing!
If you are thinking about selling your condo in the near future (or just want to know it’s current value, please go to SouthWaterfrontPrices.com for a FREE valuation.
If you would like to know more about my full condominium listing program, which I believe is the best in the city for the luxury condo market, please give me a call!
Brad Golik is a condominium specialist in Portland, OR.
He is a founding member of Condo10.com and has trained many top luxury agents the art of internet marketing for real estate.
Sometime ago, in one of my blog post, I wrote about the fact that I will always deliver my honest opinion. Sometimes that does not make everyone happy. Sometime it might be a seller in a building with an overpriced unit in a building in which I might have made comments about. Others include developers such as those who are selling The Cosmopolitan. As we speak, The Cosmopolitan continues to sell units at prices I have said to be very inflated. I have gotten my fair share of nasty emails for some of my comments and that is ok…because, as I stated earlier, you will ALWAYS get my honest opinion and I will not buckle because of what others ( or their lawyers) have to say. I believe the reason the sales continue (about 60% sold) over there are simple, a lack of inventory in the market has made people nervous about being able to buy something so they jump in with both feet. When I work with buyer’s the one thing I will always tell them is to think about the resale of that unit in the future. For those buying at The Cosmopolitan, and are buying there because that is where they want to be and don’t care about the price, or resale. I would say to enjoy your unit and the building. It will be a great place to live! For those that have concerns about resale, especially in a changing market, hear me out! In previous blog post I have made comparisons to the Seattle market because I feel it is the most like ours, except more expensive. Inventory levels in Seattle are even worse than ours currently. For those of you who may have not been onboard with comparisons I have made in the past, let me SHOW you! For comparison sake, I will be comparing to Bellevue Towers. In my opinion, a slightly higher quality building in terms of amenities and views with quality of each being pretty close. Let’s compare: Now, for those of you that know The Cosmopolitan will be a nice building with nice amenities, here is what you get at Bellevue Towers. To me, these comparisons are pretty alarming. If the market turns ever so slightly in a downward trend, it will not be a good situation for owners. The reality of the Bellevue Towers pricing is that it is market pricing… not hype adjusted! And if you need more convincing on the higher end. Compare the Penthouse at The Cosmopolitan. 3236 Squre Feet , 28th Floor priced at $3,883,000. Now compare it to a PH on the 41st Floor of Bellevue Towers…click here to see what you get! http://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/500-106th-Ave-NE-Unit-4105_Bellevue_WA_98004_M15387-66117?row=4 Wow! So let’s review. The penthouse in Portland is smaller (167 sq. ft.) has nice views but not the spectacular views that the Seattle penthouse has and…. it is priced $533,000 MORE! This is why I am concerned! Brad Golik of Pearl District Properties is a condominium specialist in the Pearl District, South Waterfront and Downtown. If you own a Pearl District condominium and would like to know the value of your condo in todays market, get a FREE market valuation at http://www.PearlDistrictCondominiums.com
For those of you who might be thinking it’s a good time to sell your Portland condominium…you are right! Inventory levels are at historically low levels right now. Yes, the sellers are back in control over the market currently. If you think you want to sell, the best thing you have going for you right now is the low inventory levels we have currently. You will be able to push your price a little and capture a bit of a premium because of the low inventory levels. If you are a buyer, you need to react quickly when you find a condo on the market you like because if you hesitate, you could lose out.
With that said, I believe buyers are being a little smarter this time around and not chasing deals with excessive multiple offer situations. In other words they are being much more patient. While they might not get the unit they want, this time around they are willing to wait for the right one to come along without getting into a bidding situation.
What about the new Cosmopolitan? Well you have heard us talking about the prices at the Cosmopolitan a bit. The prices they are asking will actually give sellers a window of opportunity to push the price a little as well. If the Cosmopolitan is asking $800 a square foot for a unit, it is a little easier for a seller to push their price from $590 a square foot to $610.
Stay tuned for our latest Cosmopolitan update…coming soon!
Just to clear up any confusion there might be in comparisons to pricing at the Cosmopolitan and the Park Avenue West Tower. I have gotten several calls and emails recently asking me how the pricing at the Cosmopolitan compares to the pricing at the new 30 story Park Avenue West Tower adjacent to the downtown Nordstrom building. The fact is, that while there is going to be 15 floors of residences at the new Park Avenue building, they will not be condos for purchase. They will be units that are higher end rentals and not for sale!
Since my first post about the Cosmopolitan I have gotten many calls and emails from people to discuss the Cosmopolitan and the pricing. What is interesting is that a number of buyers are trying to justify the pricing with comments such as…but it will be new and have all new appliances! Here is what I often tell them. “If you want new appliances, by a resale condo in a nice building like The Metropolitan, put $30,000 to $50,000 into a nice kitchen remodel and you will still be way ahead of the game compared to paying extremely excessive prices at the Cosmopolitan!”
Since my last update on the Cosmopolitan… not much has changed.
If you can recall my first post where I wrote about the euphoria of the new project and the normal sales of a new project when the developer sold 33 units during the grand opening. A couple weeks later I said the total sales were at 36 (December 11th). As of today, sales at the Cosmopolitan are at 40. From our last writing they have sold an additional 3 of the 1 bedroom garden units. These were units that were selling in the high $300,000 to the $400,000 range. (also priced in the $550 to $575 per sq. foot range. ) Most of the units that sold during the euphoric grand opening period were the smaller 2 bedroom units on the NE corner which sold out units #717 to #1817. The price range for these units was $769,500 to $918,000. The price per sq. ft for these units went from $575 to an excessive $680 for unit #1817. In my opinion, units #717 to #1317 in the $575 to $600 range is not unreasonable… still high, but not totally out of line. . 70% of the original units sold in the grand opening were in the $550 to $620 price per sq. ft. range. The low hanging fruit is now gone!
I am still sticking to my belief that this project is way overpriced! They have sold very few of the 1 bedroom units other than the popular Garden units. They still have not sold anything above the 21st floor with one exception, unit #2315, priced at $1,773,000 (crazy $1,000 per sq. ft!) I am still a little baffled as to why 8 to 9 buyers paid between $800 to $1000 a sq. ft. Again, was it the excitement of a new building,? Was it that they did not have representation from an outside broker to explain to them the severity of the high price per square foot they were paying? While it is certainly not my intention to bash this project, because I was as excited about it as anyone, the fact is that it is just very much overpriced. I believe it everyone’s right to make a reasonable profit from their hard work. But when I see excessive numbers in several areas that benefit the developer beyond a normal number, that is when I have a problem. Overcharging buyers by a considerable amount over the current market, again, the developer can pocket additional excessive profits. What happens to those buyers who are buying a unit for $650 to $1200 a square foot, and then realize a year after they move in they need to sell their unit for whatever reason. These buyers will be hammered in the resale market! Why? Because they paid $650 to $1200 a square foot in a market that should be $450 to $850!
What is my hope on this project? While I personally never wish bad on anyone, I do hope that sales remain as slow as they have been and maybe get worse. This will force the developer to drop their prices to REASONABLE numbers so that buyers don’t get punished when they become sellers in 2-5 years! In addition, my hope is that they will also go back to everyone that has made a purchase and additionally drop their prices as well. Again, I said the low hanging fruit is gone for the most part and sales will only get tougher for the developer moving forward as they try to sell a ton of units in the $700 to $1200 sq. ft. price range.
Buyers…ask yourself this one question. Should you be paying more for a condo than a similar project in Seattle? And remember, this project in Seattle is only 60% sold after a year and a half and has the benefit of Amazon as a nearby job force to support it! In addition Seattle is just priced much higher than Portland in general!
I am adding the graphic below again because I believe it tells a story pretty well!
If you still have an interest in making a purchase at the Cosmopolitan, please give me a call and we can discuss what may be the best values within the building because there are some units that have better value than others. Call Brad Golik at 503-896-8856.
Cosmopolitan on the Park
Since my last post on The Cosmopolitan, my tune on the project has changed dramatically! Why is this?
Several things actually. First and foremost is pricing!!! This project is almost like a tale of two cities. You have the city of $600 a square foot and then the city of insane pricing of $700 to 1199 a square foot!
When I wrote my first post on this project it was directly after the Cosmopolitan had their grand opening. After the first week and a half they had 32 sales, which is pretty typical with the euphoria of any new project. As of Monday morning of this week….they are at just 33 sales!
Let me start with my main issue and that is their pricing… It is higher than the new building Insignia in Seattle! Seattle’s condo prices have always been higher than Portland’s and I know that condo market very well up there. The first tower of this dual tower project is only 60% sold after a year and a half of marketing. This is a building that offers stunning Elliot Bay views. Speaking to my fellow www.Condo10.com friend and condo specialist Jim Stroupe of the Stroupe Group, he said the downtown condo market in Seattle is being driven by Amazon (a downtown headquartered company) that will be bringing in over 50,000 jobs to the downtown area. My point here? Isignia has not been a huge sellout ( only 60% of tower 1), even with the awesome amenities being offered (see tour below) and the downtown job force. In addition, many of the sales at Insignia have been Chinese investors, something we don’t have a lot of in Portland.
The Cosmopolitans pricing up to about the sixteen floors for two bedroom units is very high in my opinion, but above the sixteenth floor it just gets ridiculous! When Insignia, which I believe will be a superior building, is selling for $700 to $800 a sq. ft and The Cosmopolitan jumps to over $800 a square foot for the NE 19th floor unit, something is wrong! On the SE corner units the pricing is at $1,507,000 for unit #2015. This is $850 a sq. foot! And it quickly jumps to over 900 a sq. ft. Pricing from the 19th floor jumps $88,000 per floor! Crazy!
For comparison sake, if you go back a year and a half and look at Portland’s best, most expensive condo sales, you only have 2 condos that sold in the $800 a sq. ft. range and one of those was the penthouse at 937 which was $805 sq. ft. The penthouse PH3 at The Metropolitan sold for $690 sq. ft.! Most of the top 20 sales were in the $500 to $700 range…and these are some of the best units in some of the best buildings like The Metropolitan, The Casey, 937 and The Henry!
My second issue with this project is the marketing of the project itself. I believe it has been very thrown together and not very well thought out. The developers have not been overly agent friendly (they are paying buyers agents 1% less than Insignia is paying the agents in Seattle) They have not presented this project in the most professional manner. They currently do not even have a website up and running that shows buyers what they are getting for their overpriced units. Going back to Insignia (who has hired the Mark Company to do their marketing) they show buyers in many ways what they are getting, from aerial views from each floor to a video like tour http://www.insigniabybosa.com/#/tour . These are things that should be done before you start selling a multi million dollar project! I would be much more inclined to drop down $1,500,000 if I could get a visualization like this instead of just a few samples in a showroom. Once again Hoyt has chosen to use their in house sales force. In addition, they are forcing buyers to get pre-approved with an individual at Wells Fargo… who, as I understand, happens to be married to the Sales manager at The Cosmopolitan… no conflict of interest here?
What am I doing with my clients? If they are looking at units in the $500 to $600 a sq. ft. range I think that is marginally ok to make a purchase because if the market runs up, they will eventually be at market price…a risk though. Anything that is above $700 a sq. ft… I will be telling them to wait or I will find a unit at The Metropolitan,937, The Casey or one of the other very nice buildings in town. Here is a thought. Instead of paying $1,950,000 for a 1773 sq. ft. non -penthouse unit at the Cosmopolitan, you could spend $1,700,000 for a penthouse at the Waterfront Pearl that has great water views and night city light views and 3300 sq. ft.! One more thing to add here. The developer is asking $3,757,000 and $3,883,000 for the 2 penthouses with amazing 28th floor views. If you remember a while back, the penthouse at The Westerly that was priced $1,000,000 less, had the most spectacular views in the city (4 mountain and city view) and it didn’t sell at that price!
Bottom line….In my opinion, this building is way overpriced and I will be telling my clients…and others to wait. They will have to bring their prices way down! For those who have already put down earnest money, I feel bad because there are no escape clauses in the Hoyt Street in-house contracts that allow for them to bail if the developer reduces prices. I especially feel for those 6 buyers out of 33 who paid $800 to $1000 a sq. ft. With any luck if the developer does reduce prices maybe, just maybe if they have a heart, will reduce your prices as well!
For me personally, this is a tough situation because I believe with correct pricing I could easily sell $10,000,000 to $15,000,000 of this project and it would put me in a nice situation when the project closes in mid 2016. Instead, I would rather protect my clients best interest! I believe that if buyers held tough, over time the developer MUST reduce the prices to something in the realm of Portland condo pricing!
Brad Golik is a condominium specialist in Portland and has sold condos in both Portland and Seattle.
You can find him at http://www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com
If there is one thing I have learned from writing a blog, it’s that you can’t please everybody! When I started writing my blog originally, the purpose was to give good, objective advice so that potential buyers and sellers could be assisted in making solid decisions when it came time for them to buy or to sell their Portland condominium. Over the last couple years I have gotten tremendous positive feedback and at times, not so positive feedback. Most of the negative feedback will come from someone in a building in which I made a comment that does not support a price of a listed unit in that building. ( after all, everybody would love for any unit to sell above it’s market price in their building) Earlier this year I wrote about a unit in the Casey that I thought was way overpriced. (and I am not going to mention the unit #) In my blog I mentioned that when a unit like this gets overpriced it will sit on the market with no traffic or offers. After some time the owners will drop the price $100,000 to try and get traffic. After dropping the price and still not getting traffic, the owners will drop it another $100,000. Well guess what has happened to this unit? The unit has had 2 price reductions of $100,000 each and still no sale. What has happened though is another unit in the building came onto the market that was correctly priced at $1,375,000 and it received an offer in 42 days and is currently pending. While this unit was 230 square feet smaller, and $124,000 less, it was also on the 15th floor looking due East…fantastic views! It was very fortunate for the listing agent of this unit that he was able to use the other unit on a lower floor to help sell his Casey listing!
If a buyer is out looking at condos and is a frequent reader of my blog, I feel they will be able to pick up some very valuable advice and be able to make a better informed purchase when the time is right. Again, my comments in my blog will not always make everyone happy but I think the majority will get much more of a positive experience than negative.
What looks good out there right now? Well it depends on your price point. There are still some pretty good deals being had over at Waterfront Pearl, in fact, last month they sold a considerable number of units in the higher price points. What about Penthouses? My favorite listing on the market right now is the penthouse unit #1405 at The Elizabeth…this is a fantastic unit! (and no…this is not one of my listings! ) With a recent price reduction of $100,000, I will say I was a little surprised that the penthouse unit over at Park Place sold first! That unit, originally priced at $1769,000, dropped it’s price to $1,650,000 and received an offer a month later. If you would like to schedule a time to view the beautiful penthouse unit at The Elizabeth, give me a call today and we can get it arranged.
If you are looking for a value in a luxury condo with great river views, you might want to check out unit #209 at Pacifica Tower. Because of the surrounding construction going on, this unit is priced under $600,000. You will not find anything like this unit in the Pearl for under $600,000. Not only does this unit have a spacious deck that looks out onto the Willamette River and has amazing bridge views, it also has a huge master suite…something very rare in condo living!
There are more units that are now starting to hit the market. If you are in the market for a new condo, give me a call and we can set up a tour of available units. If you are thinking about selling your condo, we truly believe we have some of the best, if not the best, condo marketing around and we would love to sit down and share with you how we are very different than the typical real estate agent out there!
Brad Golik is a Portland Condo Specialist!
Please visit: http://www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com
Last week I wrote about two new Portland penthouses that came on the market. Today I toured the one priced at $1995,000 and I must say I was pretty impressed. This penthouse condo at The Elizabeth was stunning! While East facing, you would expect fantastic views of Mt. Hood, which this place delivers. Being in the NE corner of the building also gives you great views of Mt St. Helens and Mt. Adams. Back to the interior… this unit is only 300 square feet larger than the penthouse we wrote about last week (and $200,000 cheaper!) but the unit feels so much larger and less cramped. The layout of this Elizabeth Loft penthouse just flows very comfortably and while it is officially a two bed room unit, the owners of this penthouse are using the spacious second bedroom as a theatre room. This brings up my only negative of this wonderful penthouse….a 45 inch TV in the media room? Give me a 70 inch screen and this becomes a tough choice to say no to!
The owners of this penthouse obviously have very fine taste in their furnishings (which are for sale) which one almost has to look past when viewing this unit because it is so beautifully done. The first thing I noticed when I walked in is the elegant dining area with the crystal chandelier and then the wall of windows looking east to an amazing view. As you walk into the well appointed kitchen not only do you get those great views to the East, but also the mountains to the North.
For those buyers that need more bedrooms, the media room could easily be converted back to a second bedroom and in fact, a third bedroom/ Den could be added if needed. Of the current penthouses on the market right now, hands down, this unit is by far the one that impresses me the most.
If you are a buyer and would like to set up a tour of this beautiful penthouse, give me a call today. (I don’t believe this one will stay on the market too long!) We can also set up a tour of other available units so that you get a real good understanding of condos in this price point. If you are in need of more space, don’t overlook two available units at Waterfront Pearl. Two penthouse units at Waterfront Pearl offer over 3,000 square feet. One offers river views while the other has fantastic city views.
Brad Golik 503-896-8856
This week there were two new penthouse condos that came on the market. One was priced at $1,995,000 and the other at $2,200,000. Yesterday I toured the unit with the higher price. The agent is pushing the fact that it was named “Top 10 penthouses to die for” on MSN Real Estate… I however, was not as impressed. Let’s start with what is right with this beautiful unit. The architectural elements throughout this penthouse were very nice. Warm woods on the floors and ceiling gave a cozy feeling to the unit. But when paying over $2,000,000, cozy is maybe not the feeling I would want! Having three bedrooms and three parking spaces is a nice plus. The finishes in the bathrooms and kitchen were very nice. Now with what I did not like about this unit. I felt somewhat cramped in this 2,239 square foot unit. The main living area seemed very tight to me. While the kitchen was nice, it featured GE Monogram appliances instead of the typical higher end Sub Zero and Wolf appliances we are accustomed to seeing in this price point. The biggest disappointment was the outdoor living area. While the deck was a spacious 800+ square feet, it faces west directly into the 405 freeway noise! The freeway is only one block away. In addition, this is a mid rise building, and while yes it is a penthouse, you still have the neighbors next door at Avenue Lofts and Irving Street Lofts looking down onto your deck so not much privacy. At $2,200,000, my expectations in this price would be something more like the PH3 that sold at the Metropolitan last year for $2,240,000. That penthouse had 3,245 square feet and a massive deck that was pretty much on top of the world with total privacy in one of Portland’s most desirable buildings!
The other unit that came on the market was priced at $1,995,000 and away from the freeways in the heart of the Pearl District. Slightly larger with 2,550 square feet, this unit just lives much larger. While the deck space is smaller than the other penthouse, it still has plenty of space with 628 square feet with 3 mountain views and a much quieter location so that you would actually use your deck! This unit is in one of my favorite loft style buildings… The Elizabeth!
If you would like to tour either of these Portland penthouse units or any other luxury condominiums in Portland, give me a call and we can set up a tour and take a look at some of Portland’s most beautiful condominiums. If you are looking to buy a condo in Portland, OR., why not work with Portland’s condo specialist!
Brad Golik 503-896-8856
Brad Golik of Windermere Northwest and LuxuryCondosofPortland.com has distinguished himself in the field of (luxury) condominiums and townhomes sales by earning the prestigious Certified Condominum Specialist® designation. This national designation is given to select real estate agents who have demonstrated the specialized education, market knowledge, competence and experience in successfully and effectively listing and selling condominiums, townhomes, and other forms of common interest developments (CID).
The certification and designation are offered by the Council of Condominium Specialists® which is the national, premier independent authority in assisting real estate professionals in providing high quality service and superior market expertise to the buyers and sellers of condominiums and townhomes (CIDs).
Brad Golik is the first real estate agent in Oregon to receive the Certified Condominum Specialist® designation!
The designation indicates the recipient real estate agent has worked diligently to complete essential real estate training and has met specific performance standards to demonstrate expertise in their local condominium/townhome (CID) market to provide the high quality real estate services his clients deserve. Real estate sales are a complex and challenging field to begin with,” said Candy Peak, Director of the Council of Condominium Specialists®, “but selling a property that is in a common interest development (CID), which involves both an individual and shared ownership in real estate, such as a condominium, townhome, planned development or any other property that is part of a homeowners association, requires an agent with the specialized real estate knowledge and expertise to professionally navigate a buyer or seller through the intricate path of common interest development ownership and sales.
“My commitment is to provide outstanding service to my clients,” said Golik, and “the Certified Condominium Specialist® designation ads additional benefits for my ability to meet the needs of condominium and townhouse buyers and sellers in my area. My membership in the Council of Condominum Specialists® Network also provides me with the marketing tools and networking capabilities that bring added benefits to my clients.”
For current information on condominium and townhome sales in your neighborhood and to receive a market evaluation on your property, contact Brad Golik at 503-896-8856 or through email at firstname.lastname@example.org . You can also visit http://www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com
Today I saw a listing come on the market that prompted me to write in my blog on the topic of working with a specialist. The listing was a condo in the Pearl District that came on the market priced at $1,699,901. (901?) Well the 901 is not the issue…interesting, but not the issue. The issue is the crazy price! This is a floor plan I know very well. It is also a floor plan that has MANY comps to support the pricing and where it should be. The o2 stack in this particular building has had 2 sales in the last year and 3 recent pendings. I currently have some buyer’s coming into town that will be looking in the $1,000,000 price range and this could be a perfect unit for them… except for one thing, the price! I called and spoke with the listing agent to see if there was a typo on the pricing ( yes, I really did!) He said to me that the pricing is correct. I asked him how he came up with the pricing on this unit. He told me that a unit (#1002) just went pending at $1,999,000 (and finally sold for $1,837,000) Well this is an 02 stack but it is also over 500 sq. ft. larger with many additional amenities to it. The agent had 5 very good comps to use and selected the one that doesn’t make any sense! The 02 units with the exact same floor plan as this particular unit sold for: #202…6 floors lower…$825,000, #602…2 floors lower…$899,000. 2 of the same units also just went pending (perfect comps!!!) #302 went pending priced at $925,000 and unit #502 went pending priced at $975,000. Now something can be said that the high priced unit is on a higher floor and looks over the apartment building next door, certainly worth an extra $100,000 over unit #502. I did question the agents reasoning on his pricing and mentioned that I would probably not show it to my out of town clients because it was so overpriced. His comment to me “That’s fine”. Really? When a property is so overpriced, reasonable negotiations are often very hard to come by, either the seller is not realistic or the seller’s agent has given the seller unreasonable expectations and then the seller won’t move off of their price. Well the topic of this blog post was “Working with a specialist”. The agent in this case is not a condo specialist and is in fact an agent from Hillsboro. In his defense of pricing, he told me that he has priced plenty of properties! This may be the case but he has NOT priced many downtown condos. What is the problem that seller might have by not working with a specialist? Well in this case. This unit runs the risk that it will not get shown because of my reasoning above. When it doesn’t get shown over time, the price must come down. What will probably happen here is the agent will drop it $100,000, and it still won’t get shown so he will drop it another $100,000 and it still won’t get shown. At this point the listing starts to become stale and it loses all of it’s WOW factor. Eventually. The price will get down to where it should have been to start. At this time you will start to get the lowball offers because it has been on the market for so long and it ends up selling for well below where it should have sold if it where priced right from the beginning. This agent clearly does not understand pricing in the downtown condo market… much as I would not be an expert in pricing Hillsboro properties! In addition, because this agent doesn’t normally work with condo buyers, he doesn’t have the marketing in place that has been targeting condo buyers for any length of time. To me, this is a BIG reason to select a condo specialist to represent you in the sale of your condo or loft! If you are a buyer and would like to see this beautiful unit, my advice to you, be patient! The price will come down. Call me and I will fight for a price that is realistic and makes sense for both you and the seller. http://www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com http://www.BradGolik.com
As a real estate agent, it always hurts to be interviewed for a listing and not get it. Today that happened to me on a condo that I know I could have done a great job of marketing on. The reason I did not get the listing over the other agent is that the seller was told by the other agent that because he had a few recent transactions in the sellers building, he knew the building better! It was certainly disappointing to hear that I did not get the listing for this reason. This is not the first time I have heard this from a seller as there are many agents that live in many of the high rise condos throughout Portland. In fact there are several agents living in the building mentioned above and those agents “Know” the building much more than the other agent does. The point I want to make here is that when selling a condo, knowing the building is NOT going to get the condo sold… good marketing will! I often tell sellers to search the internet like buyer’s do and see if those agents that “know” the building, show up anywhere? So if that agent says he knows the Atwater really well, search like a buyer would on that building. Go to Bing and search for “Atwater Place condominiums”, go to Google and search “Atwater Place amenities and HOA fees”. One thing I can tell you for certain is that those agents that say they know the building don’t show up on these searches…anywhere! Who does show up? Well, my websites show up on almost all of these searches. You will also find a couple of other agents that specialize with condos that show up on a regular basis as well.
The difference with my marketing is that my “Search Specific” websites show up and these are websites where I will be featuring YOUR listing and it shows up… and stands out in front of the buyer’s, which I call serious buyers that are searching for the above keywords we mentioned above. In my opinion, If I where a seller, I would much rather hire an agent that knows how to market the building and the condo, not someone that “knows” the building!
As we wind down the year and look back at the condo sales for November, one thing is for sure… it was a pretty good year in the condominium and loft markets! Sales for the month of November, however, were down 25% from the previous month were we had 63 sales in the area we cover, which includes the Pearl District, South Waterfront, Uptown and Downtown. These numbers are based on condo prices above $200,000.
Leading the way in November was the Waterfront Pearl which recorded 5 sales from $362,500 for a 1 bed/1 bath 1080 sq. ft unit to a 2 bed/2 bath unit with 1735 sq. ft that sold for $835,000. We had 2 condos that sold in the +$1,000,000 price range this month. The first was a penthouse condo at McKenzie Lofts which sold for $1,025,000. The second, a beautiful penthouse loft at Marshall Wells Lofts that sold for $1,515,000.
A question I get asked all the time is “Are there any deals out there?” The answer is YES! For the patient buyer, there are always condos that will get put on the market that are under priced. How is this possible you might ask. The condo market is very different the suburban residential markets. Many agents that are usually out in the suburbs don’t always have the best grasp of pricing for downtown condos. A good example of deals in the market can be seen by one of my clients recent purchase. My buyers made on offer on a loft in The Elizabeth, a building that has current litigation issues. With this problem comes the problem of financing, most banks will not finance these building so it becomes a cash only situation. Naturally, this takes many buyers out of the market and some listing agents will drop the price because of this. In my situation, my clients made an offer on a unit at the Elizabeth for $635,000. The appraisal on this unit came in at $690,000! A similar unit in the building on a lower floor is for sale at $678,000, and it only has 1 parking space.. Another was sold last month on a much lower floor. Unit #604 had less desirable views than my buyers Mt Hood view, only had 1 parking space and was virtually the same floor plan and it sold for $745,000. So, for my buyers, they were able to make a purchase at $635,000 on a unit that had 2 parking spaces, fantastic NE views, on a high floor and they paid well below the appraisal and the unit that sold this month! Yes, there are still deals in the market!
One thing to keep in mind is that while something may seem difficult, that is not always the case. There are actually a lot of all cash buyers in the market right now. In fact, 4 out of my last 5 closing have been cash buyers and they were all above $500,000.
If you are in the market to buy a condo or loft in the downtown area, please feel free to give me a call and we can get you started with a tour of the many available buildings such as The Meriwether in South Waterfront, Eliot Tower in downtown Portland or perhaps The Metropolitan or The Henry in The Pearl District. There are many great options and we would be thrilled to get you started in the search for your new home.
Also, if you have heard about the Pearl District’s newest high rise condominium project Park Central, feel free to give us a call to learn more about this fantastic new project!
Lately we have started to hear more realtors with ads on the radio and some now taking out billboard space. If you are like me, when someone says something, you want to believe what they are saying is true. This is not always the case. In some cases, the truth gets stretched a little bit…or a lot!
On some recent radio ads, one agent (and no we won’t name names) claimed that he sells seventeen times more homes than the average agent. This same agent also went on to say that his clients made $50,000 more on the sale of their homes than other agents. Let’s address the first comment that the agent made. To say that he made “X” amount of sales over the average agent is less impressive than it may sound. Why? Well for one, the “Average” agent doesn’t make a lot of money in this business and doesn’t sell many homes. Remember, there are many part time agents in this business. And one thing you should realize is that NONE of these part time agents will ever tell you they are part time! The fact that the agent on the radio is comparing himself to “average” agents should tell you something. Maybe that this agent isn’t being totally honest with you by not telling you the facts. The second comment that he makes is that his clients make on average $50,000 more on the sale of their home than other agents. Well… this is simply NOT true. I and many others reported this false claim to the real estate board. This agent would have to be selling $1,500,000 or higher priced homes for this to even be a realistic comment. If I had to guess, I would say this particular agents average home price is $350,000 to $400,000. Do you really believe that the buyers agents representing the buyers are letting their client overpay by $50,000 every home?
How about billboards? I was driving out Hwy 26 this weekend and saw a local broker with a billboard ad that stated they were “#1 in Luxury Homes!” The problem with this ad is that it is not honest. If you look at the luxury home market as a whole, this brokerage firm is probably not in the top 5 for luxury sales. If you look at the areas in town where there are the most luxury homes, Lake Oswego , Dunthorpe, West Linn and the West Hills… you will rarely see sales by this brokerage. If you look at a map, and narrow down to the tiny area of Bethany… yes, this brokerage firm has some luxury home sales! Is this billboard being honest? Would I have more respect for this firm if the billboard said “#1 in luxury home sales in Bethany” Yes, but to try to fool the public like this is just wrong!
Bottom line… honesty! Like any business, it all starts with honesty.
I recently participated in answering a question on “Trulia Voices”. In this posting, I mentioned something about how most real estate agents try to be “all things to all people”. I am not a believer that this is an effective way to run a real estate business. You cannot possibly know everything in every area, this is why I choose the route of being a specialist in the condo and town home markets in Portland. If I were to buy a house in a certain area, I would want to work with an agent who is a strong negotiator and one that knows the area and pricing well. If I am buying a luxury home in Lake Oswego, I think I would be better served by working with an agent that specializes in that area and that price range. I don’t believe that an agent that is working all over the city can overnight become an “expert” in that area and have a good grasp on pricing for that area. The same holds true for the condo and loft markets in Portland. While an agent may be very good in the Lake Oswego and Dunthorpe luxury home market, it does not mean they would be the best choice to sell your luxury condominium! I feel this especially true in the condominium markets where you don’t have yard signs and much of the marketing is dependant on the internet.
If you are hiring an agent to sell your condo, it is very important that they have a strong internet presence in a broad array of the searches that condo buyers do. For example, a buyer is thinking about buying a condo at The Casey or The Metropolitan and does a search to check out what are the amenities at these buildings and what are the HOA fees. I can pretty much guarantee that the agents who are usually working in Lake Oswego, will not show up on these searches and neither will their listings! As someone who specializes in this area, I make sure that I do show up in these searches… and more importantly, that my listings (YOUR CONDO) shows up on these searches!
Everyday I see new condo listings come onto the market that are listed by agents who do not specialize with condos and each time I think “I wonder if their sellers knew there was a better way?”
If you are looking for a better way for your condominium to get the exposure it deserves, give us a call and we will sit down with you and show you our full marketing program for condominiums. We believe it is second to none and we would be thrilled to share it with you!
Visit us at www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com or call us at 503-896-8856
May was the busiest month we have seen in awhile in the downtown condo
Market. Compared to Aprils 54 sales, we finished the month of May with 91 sales ( This is in our typical coverage area of the Pearl District, Downtown and South Waterfront and with prices of $150,000 and higher). Of those 91 sales, just 30% were condos and lofts priced above the $500,000 price range. There was tremendous activity in the lower price range this last month, especially in the $150,000 to $300,000 range. In the upper end of the market, condos were selling… and selling for cash! 3 of the top 4 highest priced units sold for cash including the Penthouse at The Metropolitan that we had written about earlier that sold for $2,240,000. The Penthouse at Bridgeport that went on the market for $1,149,000 was sold for cash at a price of $1,075,000. That penthouse condo at the Elizabeth that we thought was under priced at $925,000, sold for just $900,000!
Where do we go from here? We have seen prices go up and as we do, we will start to see more inventory come onto the market as people gain a little more equity in their homes. We have also seen a pretty big boost in interest rates to over 4%. Will this slow down buyers? While it’s not 3.5%… It”s still pretty darn good! If you are in the market to buy a new condo or loft, prices will only continue to increase, although it may be at a slower pace than what we have seen this first half of the year as prices were pushed by the pent up demand. If you are looking to sell your condo, remember, correct pricing and good marketing can mean the difference between getting the price that you want or something that could be much lower… don’t under estimate the power of good marketing. In other words, don’t just select the agent that helped you buy your condo. Select an agent that has a great marketing program that is directed towards condo buyers everyday! And remember, it doesn’t matter if you are selling a $1,000,000 Portland condo or a $300,000 condo, you deserve great service and more than an agent that will put your listing in the MLS and wait! We go above and beyond in our marketing because you deserve it! You have worked hard for your money… and we believe we should do the same!