Central Oregon Growth Report: Housing for the Future

I was listening to NPR the other morning getting ready for work when it featured an article about the Bend Livability Project. Admittedly, it is the sort of news that will perk the ear of any realtor. The lead to the story suggested that Bend, Oregon, already one of the fastest growing areas in the country, will continue to attract new residents with the population estimated to increase by 30-40% in the next several decades.

Exciting yes; but also worrisome. While the project exudes youthful exuberance and is staffed with millennials who have mostly moved to Central Oregon (the group features only one true Bendite), the project hopes to address some important topics that will impact the area, one of which is quite straightforward: Where will Bend put these people?

Bend is mostly divided into two separate communities, divided by Hwy 97: The west side which encompasses the downtown area and many of the attractions that make the area so vibrant and the east side, which tends toward the older, more settled communities. Property values on the west side of town can cost 30-50% more than homes to the east of the highway.

But growth will come to the whole area and both sides of the street will feel the growing pains of what could be considered rapid urban expansion. While this group is still discussing and meeting with residents to discuss urban boundaries, the services needed to accommodate these new comers, and the ways to approach these needs, one thing remains: There are not enough homes for the workers that will be attracted to life in Central Oregon.

While some discussions are ongoing related to growing skyward, well above the two-story horizon currently in place, the boundary also needs to expand. Some discussions have suggested that this may encompass an additional 2,000 acres.

So what does that mean to you? If you live in Bend, you can expect your property values to increase. You can also expect taxes to rise. If you plan on staying, this is something you can budget. But dense is dense and if you are thinking that might not be to your liking and want to remain in the area, call me to discuss your options in the surrounding areas.

If you are planning to move to Bend, expect prices to begin to resemble more Portland-like pricing. Currently, the rental rate in Bend is somewhat less than 1% vacancy. That means buying may be your only option. The sacrifices you make to get here will be well worth it.

This sort of expansion can only take place over time. If you drive around the area, you will see numerous projects already underway. Caldera Springs, another area I am very familiar with, is now offering some excellent opportunities for the right clients. Sunriver is experiencing some exciting revitalization, perhaps in anticipation of this anticipated growth. That said, there are some excellent properties available and many are priced fairly. Once you make the decision to make Central Oregon your home, we can help you narrow down your prospects.

How can we assist you today?


On behalf of The Jones Group @ Sunriver Realty

Nola Horton-Jones, Principal Broker/Realtor | ABR, C-RIS, e-PRO, GREEN, RSPS, CCIM Candidate

Bryce Jones, Broker/Realtor | ABR, CRS, e-PRO, GREEN, GRI, RSPS, SFR

Karen Marcy, Broker/Realtor

The Jones Group @ Sunriver Realty | 57057 Beaver Drive | Sunriver, OR 97707

Mobile: 541-420- 3725 | Mobile: 541-420- 4018 | Mobile: 503-327- 9611 | Fax: 541-593- 5123



Licensed in Oregon