Now, more than ever, quality marketing matters in the sale of your Portland luxury condominium. Christie’s International Real Estate is the market leader… worldwide!
Upcoming Penthouse listings
A short time ago I wrote about the possibility of a $6 million penthouse listing that might be coming on the market. The owner loves the unit and is waffling a little whether he should sell it or not. As of this time, the owner is still undecided so I will post more as I hear. If you are looking for a full-floor penthouse in this price range, contact me and I can fill you in on the details.
Today I am writing about another penthouse that will be coming on the market soon. I was originally interviewed to list the property but unfortunately, the owners did not like the numbers I explained to them . I will say, I am usually right more often than wrong on pricing a condo and for this unit, I feel my numbers were very accurate as I have sold 7 of the last 14 units in the building. Of more importance, I sold the unit directly below this unit less than a year ago. The floor plans are identical! The one coming to market is a penthouse unit, so you would pick up about 12 inches of ceiling height. The unit I listed sold was for $1.1 million, and sold for over asking price. The $525 per square foot sales price tied a record of another unit in the building I had sold. For the penthouse listing, I told the owners I was going to push for another record price for the building and gave them my number. They were not satisfied with the number and thought the number should be MUCH higher! Their reasoning was not unusual from what I hear from others…they thought their unit was much better than the unit I sold below theirs and they also thought their unit was way better than another unit that sold in the building for $1.35 million.
From an agents (and a buyers) standpoint, the $1.35 million unit had better river and bridge views. In addition, it had 650 square feet more, and it had a third bedroom. Yet the sellers of this penthouse thought theirs was better and the price should correspond to their thinking. Now the owners did have a couple upgrades in this unit that the others did not. Let’s look at these. The TV was hidden behind a mirror and appeared with the touch of a button…kind of cool in a James Bond kind of way. Another upgrade was a white wood-like tile floor that the sellers really liked. The problem here is that I believe that 90% of potential buyers would rip up the tile and replace with something else, so it’s not really an upgrade. So what are the true values of these “upgrades”? The James Bond hidden TV was probably $3,000 to $5,000. Other than these two things, the unit was essentially the same as the unit that I sold below for $1.1 million. What is the extra 12 inches of ceiling height worth to someone? $50,000? So now we have a premium of $55,000. I told the owners I could sell it for around $1,200,000, maybe a little more. That’s an additional 5% over the number of $1,1550,000. It was not enough!
Now, because I don’t have the listing, I would love to find the buyer because I do love the unit and it’s views, (the photo above is views from the unit) but, at the right price for my client! I am not sure what price the listing agent will come out with, but I know it will be high. As your buyers agent, I will fight to get you a good price on this unit. If you are looking for a beautiful penthouse with amazing views, (The above photos are the views from this unit!) this could be the one! But, only at the right price. I will work to negotiate a good price for you and I know this building better than anyone. If we can’t get you that price, walk away!
If you are looking for a great penthouse unit in Portland, give me a call at 503-896-8856
Brad Golik is a luxury condominium specialist at Pearl District Properties and LuxuryCondosofPortland.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or by phone at 503-896-8856.
Recently a friend came by my office and we began discussing real estate. This friend often reads my blog post, and in our conversation, he mentioned that I hammer on the issue of agents not using professional photos. He also said that he could not believe that there were that many agents who don’t use professional photos, knowing that it has been shown that great photos help sell homes faster and for more money. So, why not hire a professional photographer? It is hard to explain.
To prove my point, I asked my friend to pick any condo building in Portland. He looked at our inventory sheet and saw that Waterfront Pearl had more listings than other buildings, so I used that building as an example. In my opinion, EVERY listing should have great photos, especially higher-end listings. In this example I will use listings priced at $750,000 or higher. Currently at Waterfront Pearl there are 6 listings above $750,000 (they are priced from $798,000 to $1,049,000) Of these 6, only 2 of the 6 listings have used professional photography! Again people, these are $800,000+ condos for sale!
To say that my friend was shocked is a huge understatement. His comment: “Why would someone hire an agent who does not care enough to do their best for their client?” Hmmm… where have I heard this before? Why would an agent not spend a few hundred dollars in an attempt to gain thousands more for the client? And if that agent is not spending money to do a nice job on the photos do you think they are going to spend money on doing a nice video, expensive print material or internet marketing? Probably not.
The National Association of Realtors has shown time and time again that homes listed with high-quality photos sell for more money. If you are an agent who doesn’t spend on professional photos, you might as well be telling your clients upfront that you just don’t care what their home sells for! Harsh? Maybe. True? You be the judge.
Brad Golik is a condominium specialist at LuxuryCondosofPortland.com and Pearl District Properties. If you would like to see any listed condo or loft, call Brad today 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!
The Design Commission has approved the newest 14 story tower in The Pearl District. The Dianne, will be 153′ tall and house 102 residential (apartment) units…Yes, ANOTHER apartment building! The positive here, the developer, John Carroll of Carroll Investments, whose previous projects in the neighborhood include The Gregory Condos, The Edge Lofts, The Chown Pella Lofts, The Elizabeth Lofts and the McKenzie Lofts. His buildings offer a great sense of character… unlike what we are seeing with The Cosmopolitan and other Hoyt properties. For more info go to: http://www.nextportland.com/2015/11/04/the-diane-2/
We have all heard recently how crazy the market is lately. We have heard that it is a Seller’s market and that there are no deals to be had. Wrong!
Yesterday, my client closed on the purchase of a beautiful new Penthouse condo at The Elizabeth. Originally priced at $3,299,000, my buyer closed on this unit at $2,200,000…FULLY FURNISHED, and the furnishings were stunning! After 10 months on the market, this penthouse was most recently priced at $2,995,000. I have been in this business a long time now and I must say, this has to be one of the best purchases I have seen… and this in a “Seller’s Market”!
One reason that I want to bring up this purchase is to talk about the importance of correct pricing when you put your home on the market. It is great to try and push the price a little in this market…but there is a very fine line! There are many penthouse units in the market that right now are becoming stale because they were priced way over the market price. The Penthouse at The Elizabeth was one of them and you may recall my blog posting when that unit originally came on the market. If you did not read about it “Luxury Condos and Portland Penthouses” in November when I wrote about it…here is what I said:
“Topping the list is the largest of the penthouse units at the Cosmopolitan priced at $3,883,000. If I had to guess, this will be the first one to sell of the three penthouses that are in the $3,000,000 price range. The other two, the penthouse at the Casey priced at $3,499,000 and the penthouse at the Elizabeth priced at $3,298,900 are very overpriced in my opinion. ( so is the one at the Cosmopolitan…but it will eventually sell very close to its asking price). The other two are priced in the $1000 a square foot vicinity. This is way too high, in my opinion!”
Now I am not patting myself on the back for being right about the pricing… (because I was VERY wrong saying the Cosmo would have difficulties selling) The reason I point this out is to let seller’s know that when you overprice a unit, it will cost you more in the end because the unit becomes stale and lowball offers will start to come…much like our offer on The Elizabeth penthouse after it had been on the market for 10 months! If you are a buyer that is looking for a luxury condo or penthouse and would like to hear our negotiation strategy for this purchase, give me a call as I would love to assist you in finding a great unit! If you are an owner that is thinking about selling, I would love to sit down with you and share my marketing program with you. I truly believe that I have the best marketing program for condos in the + $500,000 market!
If you are a buyer in the luxury end of the market and possibly looking for a penthouse, please give me a call because I believe with the sale price of $2,200,000 at The Elizabeth, ( the most recent comp) the other units in the market that are priced at $2,000,000 or higher will be getting a pretty big dose of reality and need to adjust pricing or at least be willing to accept a realistic offer!
Brad Golik is a condominium specialist with LuxuryCondosofPortland.com and Pearl District Properties. He is also a founding member of Condo10.
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
When I first started writing in a blog I searched out some experts to see what they said in terms of building a good base of readers. Here is what they said: “To grow a blog and add readership the most important thing you can do is be truthful and honest in your writing. When you do this you will gain a following of people that will trust what you have to say and come to you for solid advice.”
With this in mind, I have always tried to be honest in my comments. This does not always please everyone. But the truth is that you will NEVER please everyone. Recently I got a letter from the sales manager of the Cosmopolitan, a new high rise condo project in the Pearl District. This was a pretty nasty email that voiced her displeasure with my comments on the Cosmopolitan project. In her email she stated that a couple of my comments were rude. Let me address this. First, I have never made a negative comment on the project itself other than the pricing of the units. I happen to love the project and feel it is needed.
What she may be alluding to is the “fact” that I was not happy that the developer was requiring buyers to be pre-approved through a specific lender at Wells Fargo. I mentioned that ( and they fail to mention) this lender happened to be the husband of this sales manager. I don’t believe this was rude on my part, only trying to disclose to the general public something that I believe they should have disclosed upfront.
Now back to business! Here is the latest update on the Cosmopolitan ( and for what it is worth, I have had many request for these continued updates). Currently the building is 33% sold. Not much of a change from my last post. In my last post I mentioned that there were 46 units sold, today they are at 49 units sold. In other words, only 16 units have sold since after the grand opening. As mentioned before, there is still only 1 unit above the 21st floor that sold for a whopping 900 a sq. ft. I was told that 2 of the junior penthouse units went pending…those sales have not happened and all of the junior penthouse and penthouse units are still available ( for those of you inclined to pay an astronomical $969 to $1,641 a square foot price.)
As I mentioned before, with most of the low hanging fruit taken…ie. Units that were priced closest to reality to the market, sales I believe, will become harder to come by for the developer. With a current absorbtion rate that could slow down even more, I believe it could take the developer 18 months to 2 years to sell out this project. With that said, I don’t believe the developer can afford to do this and in my opinion, as stated before, I believe they will be forced to drop the prices on this beautiful new high rise. Part of the reason that they have had the sales they have had at this point I believe is because of the low inventory in our market. Some buyers do not want to wait for new resale units to come to market. Keep in mind, the Cosmopolitan will not be completed until mid 2016 so the inventory levels we are seeing now can change dramatically over that period of time.
And while the high prices at the Cosmopolitan may help sellers get a higher price when selling their condo in this current market, buyers will still be better off buying resale and updating after their purchase. With sellers seeing this effect on pricing, it might push them to put their condo on the market sooner than later. If this happens, it could help with the low inventory situation we are now seeing. For buyer’s, the excitement of living in a new beautiful building like the Cosmopolitan can be pretty tempting. Again going back to the fact that in 2014, the top 30 condos priced at $1,000,000 and higher averaged a price per square foot of $579. These were the “Best of the Best” in Portland. Do you think it is prudent to pay amounts at the Cosmopolitan that are $200 to $1000 a square foot higher?
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
The Cosmopolitan Rises!
At last… a new condominium is rising in Portland!. Let’s say a big welcome to The Cosmopolitan on the Park in the Pearl District. This 28 story condominium tower located on Block 15 of Portland’s Pearl District is set to be the crowning jewel of the Portland high rise condominium projects. Developed by the Hoyt Street development team, who’s last projects included Encore and the stunning Metropolitan, this project is sure to please those looking to live in one of the finest condo projects in town.
There is a lot going on in the Pearl District in terms of construction. 3 buildings, all being constructed by Anderson Construction are being built next to each other. First you have the Cosmopolitan. It will be a condominium project with 343,000 square feet of space. It will have 3 levels of above grade parking ( 169 spaces) It will have a retail level and a common area with outdoor spaces to enjoy. See renderings here
Next you have a new high rise apartment building The Overton. Rising 26 stories and offering 284 units. What will be interesting about this building is that it will situated on its base and rotated 45 degrees to the common city grade…a look I think will be very interesting! Finally you have Block 17. A 16 story apartment building ( yes another apartment building!) With 281 units and 211 parking stalls this project by architect Boora Architects will be the first to be completed in 2015.
This brings up a question…has Portland overbuilt in the apartment arena? This actually bodes well for current condo owners as the lack of supply will continue. The other thing to think about, now with very low interest rates and high rental rates is that it is currently better to buy than rent!
If you are in the market for a new Portland condominium, or maybe you are just starting the process of thinking about it, we can help! Let me take you on a tour of available condo units to see if it might be the lifestyle for you. If you are thinking about selling your condo, keep Brad in mind to list your condo. Brad has the most complete and extensive marketing program for condominium owners in Portland. Please visit us at http://www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com or http://www.BradGolik.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
Portland Penthouse Watch
What is happening in the upper end of Portland’s condo market? Let’s start by looking at the top 5 most expensive condos in Portland that are currently listed. The most expensive, at $2,495,000, The Envoy penthouse. This beautiful penthouse has become like an old friend…because it has been on the market for so long now we have come to know it well. While certainly a unique property, this condo seems to be cursed or it is just the fact that it seems to always be priced just above the market as it has consistently chased the market down.
In the number 2 spot, is one of my favorites and priced at $1,995,000, unit #1405 at the Elizabeth. Listed in late April, this special unit features killer views to the East as well as north to Mt St. Helens. If you are in the market for a luxury condo in Portland, this one deserves a look! Give me a call and we can set up a showing as soon as possible.
In the number 3 position is a penthouse we wrote about in mid April when it came on the market. With it’s price reduced $250,000 since that time, now priced at $1,950,000, this penthouse located on 14th street still seems to be priced high in my opinion. With about 300 square feet less than our number 2 penthouse, this unit just seems to live much smaller. And while boasting an 800 square foot terrace, the noise levels next to the freeway prohibit any relaxing times with peace and quiet. Also, when paying over $1,900,000, most buyers will not like the fact that owners at the two buildings next door look down on this property!
In the number 4 spot, Unit #1001 at Waterfront Pearl. Earlier this year, I had written about the unit directly below this unit, #901, it recently sold for $1,650,000. Unit #1001 is now on the market and listed for $1,759,000. While a spacious unit with over 3100 square feet, it does have one slight negative for this price point and that is the privacy could be a bit of an issue for some as the building next door does look directly into this unit. With that said, it does have fantastic river views, in addition, when you stand at the windows of this unit you feel that you are standing right on top of the river! In addition to the 3 bedrooms a den and 3.5 baths, this unit has a large room that would be perfect for a large media room!
At #5, this penthouse unit at Park Place, offered at $1,650,000 offers a wonderful outdoor living area. While the living area itself is nice, it does not come with a ton of the “Wow” factor.
In addition to Portland’s most expensive penthouse condos, I did want to mention a unit that I think represents value and is also a very nice unit. This is the new listing at the Casey, unit #1501. If spectacular views are what you are after, look no further! If you are in the market, give me a call soon and we can set up a showing of this beautiful unit. This is a unit that I think will sell reasonably quickly and one of the reasons I think this will happen, other than the great views, another unit in this building is priced a quarter of a million higher than this unit, and while the other unit is slightly bigger, the 15th floor views will win people over! I also believe the pricing of the other unit will actually help the sale of unit #1501.
So there you have it. Some of Portland’s best penthouse condominiums on the market today! Again, if you are in the market to buy one of Portland’s finest penthouse condominiums or one the fits more into your budget, call Brad Golik today. It does not cost you anything more to work with a condo specialist!
The condo market is still experiencing low inventory levels even as spring arrives. While we are beginning to see more condos come on the market, it is still well below what we normally see in this time of the year. Part of the problem… negative equity is still a problem for many owners, even after the nice appreciation we had in 2013. Please click on the link below for more information!
If you are in the market to buy a condo, call Brad Golik, the Portland condominium specialist!
Recently I was asked by a fellow Realtor why I spend so much money on my listings. My answer was simple… I told her “because they pay me to MARKET their home!”
If you have followed my blog for any length of time, you will know by now that I am a huge believer in doing a great job of marketing. You have also heard me say that “Any agent can sell your condominium… but at what price?” Everyday I see new listings come onto the market where I see that the agent has done a less than professional job of marketing someone’s condominium listing. To me, this is a big frustration as I still do not understand why? Sometimes the sellers choose the agent who helped them purchase their condo, sometimes sellers are referred to an agent (often to agents who rarely sell condos and do very little marketing). You have often heard me say that a real estate agent who does not pay for professional photos on a million dollar listing does not deserve to “Market” a million dollar listing! (Honestly, I feel the same about $250,000 listings as well) Today a new listing came on the market that was priced over $950,000. The listing agent did not use professional photography! I have a buyer that wants to see this particular building and is in this price range. I had to tell my client to disregard the photos and that we should still take a look at the unit. If they were just judging the unit by the bad photos, they may have never looked at this unit!
In past postings on my blog, we have played a game called… guess the $1,000,000 condo! Today we are going to do it again… just to make a point! Below are two links to 2 different condo listings. Although one is on a Windermere site, it is not a Windermere agent ( we do not want to disrespect the agent by posting their name). When you click on these links, do not look at the text, only the photos. Which one has better photos? Which one makes you want to see the listing? Which one looks like a million dollar condo?
Which one looks like a million dollar condo? Well if I’m being honest, neither of them do. Which is really too bad for the one that is because it is a nice unit. As for the $305,000 studio condo, It may not look like a million dollar condo either but we do everything we can to make it look like a million… including professional photos!
If you plan on listing your condo in the future, give Brad Golik a call to see a full marketing program that will be designed just for YOUR condo!
How’s the market?
The spring is usually the time when we see the real estate market start to take off. This is not the case so far this year. Why is that? It is because of a lack of inventory in the market. Currently we are close to 2 months inventory in the market, a number that is very low. This spring we were hoping for more listings to come on the market than what we have seen so far. With rising prices last year we thought we would see many of the condo owners who were underwater on their units, now have enough equity to put their condos on the market. This has not really happened yet.
How are condo sales going? Last month sales were up 24% from the previous month, not unusual for this time of year. In looking at the typical area we cover, which is downtown, Pearl District and South Waterfront there were 61 sales for the month of April (units priced $200,000 and higher). Of those 61 sales, only 11 of those were for over $500,000 and of those 11, only three were over $1,000,000. Pending sales appear to be going down as a result of the lack of inventory
What does this mean for you the buyer and seller? Typically with inventory at 6 months and below, it becomes a seller’s market. Does that mean it is not a good time to buy? No, not at all. It just means you are going to have to be a little patient and expect that you might even get into a multiple offer situation. Not always the case though. For example in the upper end of the condo market, there are some units that have been on the market for awhile. As the owners begin to drop the prices, you will want to be ready to pounce. Many of these units end up selling below market value because of their time on the market and the negative stigma that comes along with that.
As for seller’s, right now is a very good time to put your home on the market because you virtually have little to no competition so now you might be able to bump your price a little!
If you are a buyer in the Portland condominium market, don’t hesitate to call the Portland condo specialist, Brad Golik at 503-896-8856
If you are thinking about selling, now is a great time to do it. Give us a call and we can do a market analysis on your condo and also show you the best condo marketing in the city!
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
Portland Penthouse Update How are Portland penthouse sales going since the beginning of 2014? There has been some recent activity in penthouse units that have been on the market for sometime now. Last week, the two remaining penthouses at Encore got offers and are now in a Pending status. Unit #1606, priced at $1,850,000 and unit #1604 priced at $1,580,000. These units have been on the market a long time but patience may have paid off for the developer as these two units when sold will still have gotten over $650 a square foot. ( will keep you posted when they do close). In comparison, Unit #805 at Pacifica Tower was finally sold. Originally priced at $1,500,000, the agent then dropped the price $150,000 after only 1 month to $1,350,000. The sale closed last week at $1,228,900 … or only $455 a sq. ft.! This was a massive 18% off of the original list price! This is only slightly higher price per sq. ft. than a couple of the regular units recently sold for at Pacifica! I am not sure why the agents at Pacifica were not able to get something closer to the numbers the two penthouses at Encore got. Sure, Pacifica is not in the Pearl, but $200 a sq. ft. difference is HUGE for VERY comparable penthouse units! Other penthouses that are still on the market vary from the very attractive unit #901 at Waterfront Pearl which offers over 3,100 sq. ft and priced at $1,850,000 to the grossly overpriced penthouse unit #1601 at The Civic. The Civic unit, with only 2102 sq. ft, and located in what is not the best location is priced at $1,450,000. In my opinion, this unit is at least $200,000 high…maybe more. And the recent sale of the unit at Pacifica, with fantastic water and bridge views… and 2700 sq. ft and selling at only $455 a sq. ft. is going to kill any hopes of the owners getting anywhere near it’s list price of $1,450,000! If you are in the market for a Portland penthouse or other Portland luxury condominium, please give us a call and we will set a tour for you to view Portland’s finest condominiums! Give me a call today at 503-896-8856.
Please click on the link for the recent Oregonian news story on the settlement at the Elizabeth condos in Portland.
Want to sell? For a FREE market analysis, call Brad Golik today at 503-896-8856!
Portland Condo Sales
2013 was a good year in the Portland condo market! For owners of Portland condominiums, you saw you values come back after a long downturn in the market. For those who bought a new condo in 2013, many of you were able to pick up some very good values and take advantage of the very low rates that we have seen through-out the year. For me it was a very good year as I got to meet some of the most amazing clients that I was so fortunate enough to meet. In any business, when you have the opportunity to meet really good people and include them into your circle of friends, it just doesn’t get any better. So, to all that I was able to work with in 2013… I say Thank You!
And now for some numbers!
December was actually a pretty busy month in the condo market. Sales actually jumped 10% from the previous month as we saw 52 sales in the area that we focus on which includes Downtown, The Pearl District and South Waterfront. For the year, sales jumped 62% from the previous year. We had 978 sales in the + $200,000 market, over 376 more sales than in 2012!
Leading the way in number of sales once again was Waterfront Pearl which recorded 7 sales in December. To refresh you memory on this project, it was completed at the peak of the market. Instead of selling the units, they went into the rental market. Currently, as leases come due, the units are being sold again. If you have not seen these condos at Waterfront Pearl, it is worth taking a look at as they offer some of the best views in the city! If you would like a tour, give us a call ( 503-896-8856)
As we now see the prices of condos trending upward, many owners will now start to think about selling their unit. If this is the case with you, we encourage you to give us a call as we would love to interview for the job. What makes us different is our total commitment to offering you the best condo marketing available in the city! Time and time again the National Association of Realtors has discussed how their studies show that better photographs help sell homes at a higher price. At the very minimum, make sure the agent you hire is willing to spend $100 to $250 on professional photos. If it were me selling a condo for, say $600,000 and the agent wasn’t spending $200 on quality real estate photos ( especially knowing that the agent will make somewhere around $15,000 ) This person would NOT be my agent!
As an agent, part of my commission is for the purpose of marketing. I have always believed in spending more on my marketing than typical agents. The reason is simple… you are paying me to market your condo and get it sold!
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!
Portland Condos in the news!
In today’s Oregonian, there is an article about the current situation going on in the Portland condo market with regards to the lawsuits that are taking place. The root of the problem is a company named Victaulic Co. They were the supplier of the faulty plumbing gaskets, couplings and valves in a number of Portland high rise buildings!
In this article, one agent said he considers this to be a minor issue and “blown out of proportion”. This is not a minor issue!! It has affected many condo owners as well as the values of their units.
Tell the many condo owners that have not been able to sell their units over the last year that it is “blown out of proportion”. Tell the owners of units that could not re-finance when rates were below 3.5% that it was “blown out of proportion”. One thing to keep in mind as HOA’s begin their lawsuits against Victaulic, Portland is not the only city that this company supplied parts to. How many HOA association across the country are dealing with this situation? Can this company absorb all of the possible lawsuits? If not, are future assessments a possibility if settlements are not large enough to cover the potential cost? To say that this issue is a minor issue, is, in my opinion, is not an accurate statement at all. Again, tell owners at The Elizabeth who may have had to take a $25,000 to $50,000 or more hit on the sale of their unit because a cash buyer was able to have the upper hand in negations, that this is a minor issue!
see article at : http://www.oregonlive.com/front-porch/index.ssf/2013/08/four_portland_condo_buildings.html
Yesterday, like most Tuesdays, I was out and about looking at new condos on the market. I came across a new penthouse listing and went to the brokers open house for that listing. Two things really stuck out with me after viewing this penthouse condo at Bridgeport. First, you will often hear me talking about the importance of doing a good job of marketing when it comes to high end listings. One thing I have not talked much about, that I think is very important, is service! An agent is paid a commission to do a service for a client. Marketing is a huge part of this service. Also huge…and part marketing is SELLING the unit to every potential buyer and agent that you get in front of! I bring this up because I was blown away yesterday when I went to this brokers open yesterday. I was not blown away by the condo itself, while very nice. I was blown away by the fact that the listing agent said 2 words to me the entire time I was there. The 2 words that were uttered to me as I was getting ready to walk out the door was “Cool huh?” And maybe you could consider it that only one word was really said to me because “huh” really isn’t a word is it? Anyway, the point here is that the listing agent barely acknowledged that I was there… more importantly, she did not make any attempt of selling me on why I should bring potential buyers to come look at the unit! This is the whole point of going to a brokers open. As a listing agent, I want to SELL every agent that walks through the door on the many great benefits of why they should bring their clients to see the listing. It is also a way of trying to create some urgency and competition among the real estate agents. Not only did the agent not say anything to me about the penthouse unit, there were no marketing pieces either. As I left the building, one more bit of service would have been appreciated… a simple “Thanks for coming” by the listing agents co-worker that was at the front door, but that did not happen either. Not a word as I left. I couldn’t help but feel frustrated as I left this listing. Service is a part of marketing. If the initial service of having a brokers open to try to sell people on the unit failed, what will the rest of this agents marketing be like? I think I have a pretty good idea.
If you have read many of my blog posts, you probably know by now that marketing is a huge part of what I do as a condominium specialist. Why is this? Well for one thing, there are no yard signs with condominiums. The internet is where condo buyers go to search for a condo or loft. Yes my frustration as I left this listing was the fact that I didn’t have the listing. My frustration burned from the fact that I could do so much more for the seller than saying just 2 words…. ( make that 1 word) to an agent that showed up to a brokers open and is there for a reason.
In the beginning of this blog post I mentioned that there were two things that stood out about this listing… #2 PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHS…are you kidding me?
**Please read a previous post on what we have to say about photographs for listings!**
How is the Portland condo market? Well, based on April Portland condo sales, it’s going pretty well. For the month of April there were 54 sales in the $150,000 and up market which includes the Pearl District, Downtown and South Waterfront. This is down just 4 sales from last month but the pending sales jumped this month with 79 in a pending status. Sales were evenly spread out between low end condos and Portland’s million dollar condos. This month there were 5 condos that sold above $998,000. This includes a Cambridge condo that is just walking distance to NW 23rd, priced at $1,440,000 that sold for 3.6% off of it’s original list price. Also selling in April was one of my favorite Portland townhouse units at Park Place, this Jeffrey Lamb designed Portland townhouse sold for $1,125,000. Stats for the $500,000 and higher market showed average days on market at 84 with an average of 3.5% off of the listed price. In the $500,000 and lower market, average days on market were 49 with sales happening at 1.7% off of the list price.
Remember, if you want to sell your condo in this market for top dollar, don’t just list it with a typical agent that will put it in the MLS and wait. Will it sell? Sure, in this market at some point it will sell. Why not try to maximize your returns though by having a great marketing program in place? We believe that the better the marketing, the better the possible returns. It does not matter whether you are selling real estate or widgets, marketing works! Like the recent AT&T commercials suggest…”It’s not complicated, more is better!” And not only is more better…better is better! Visit us at Portland’s #1 condo search website.