I found an interesting article today that suggested that renters are the next victims of this housing market. Although the article is focused on larger markets we are seeing similar activity here in Central Oregon. The rental market in Bend is tight. When we have a new house for rent we usually have more than one family wanting to apply for the house within a week.
It is pretty clear that the large increase in numbers of people renting is primarily a result of so many houses being foreclosed. I don’t have hard numbers but I would say 70% of prospective tenants that I talk to need to rent because they have recently given their house back to the bank. In Central Oregon there are a couple other factors that are putting pressure on the rental market. One is that people just like to live here. This area has so much to offer that people move here from up and down the west coast. Often for no other reason than they have heard such great things about Bend that they decided to move here. These people frequently choose to rent when they move here because they haven’t figured out exactly where they want to live, they aren’t sure how long they will be here or they too are waiting for their credit to recover after having their house foreclosed.
A second pressure on the rental market has been PV Powered (now owned by Advanced Energy). They have been expanding rapidly over the last few years, going from 55 employees to over 140. Just in the last two months we have placed people working for PV Powered who moved here from Portland, Southern California and Columbus, Ohio.
Which brings me to my title question. Is now a good time to own an investment (rental) property in Central Oregon? The short answer is yes. We have sold a number of investment houses in the last few months that have had positve cash flow right out of the gate. Prices are low enough and rents are high enough that with the minimum required down payment an owner can net $100 or more a month on a rental. Does that sound interesting? We would be happy to help you determine if owning an investment property is the right fit for you. You can find out more about us along with our contact information at http://www.buybendoregonhomes.com/