Jeff and I are thinking about moving out of Portland. We LOVE our house and we love the neighborhood, but Portland? Not so much. Since moving back to the Portland area in 2010, we have seen our property taxes more than double (partially due to our remodel, but also due to the frequent bond measures that the city relies on so much for funding). There are homeless people camping on our sidewalks and in our parks and increasing reports of violence and crime.
Now, when we are expecting a package delivery, we have to hang out in the living room so we can watch for packages and quickly grab them before the porch thieves. Over the last year or two, I've seen several videos posted to Reddit by folks who have security cameras showing the package crime and from what I can tell it is too petty of a crime for the Portland police to try and respond.
Portland seems to be quite at a loss how to deal with its growth and quickly rising housing costs. They are allowing developers to tear down cute affordable houses, and rebuild with fugly expensive boxes, like this that sold for over $900K.
|5934 NE 14th Ave, Portland OR 97211|
Some historic neighborhoods, including the Laurelhurst neighborhood, are trying to apply for Historic District designation to protect against the escalating number of demolitions, and from what I can tell, Oregon's response was to introduce HB2007 to protect developer profits by removing the protections provided by these historic neighborhoods. Luckily, they failed, this time
, but I don't have a lot of faith that they won't keep trying and eventually succeed.
There are increasing reports of beautiful homes, like this one on NE Thompson, being demolished or being scheduled for demolition. (That sign was a notice "to be demolished" back in March. I'm not sure whether that beautiful house was actually demolished or not. I'm afraid to look.) I simply can't take it anymore. It makes me too sad.
So, when we recently went on a visit to Prineville, Oregon, we looked at houses in a new development. (Prineville is a bit east of Bend, Oregon.) We are definitely considering moving. We could buy a pretty decent house for less than half the cost of a comparable house in Portland and also pay less than half the property taxes. That would help our retirement savings last longer, so it's a pretty compelling argument.
It's a big decision, but I understand your reasons. It would break my heart to see all those old houses torn down. I love the Bend Oregon area. It could be a good compromise.ReplyDelete
I'm so sad to hear this. I love following your blog but I feel your pain. I see the homeless at Laurelhurst park and I feel anger that the city doesn't protect its residents better. This is where I believe some cities become unreasonably too liberal and it pushes the middle class out, leaving only people who are incredibly wealthy and the people who rely on the wealthy being taxed to live.ReplyDelete
I can understand why you'd like to move, although it would be a shame after all the work you put in on your beautiful home. I certainly hope your neighborhood can get some kind of historic site preservation.ReplyDelete
No one is more sad than I am. I wish I could pick up my house and move it.Delete
Are there any established small towns in your potential living range? Here in the midwest, if you're not tied to being near a larger metro area (e.g. professional jobs, etc), there are great small towns with fabulous old homes at great prices. If I didn't need to be near a larger metro to have a good engineering job, My wife and I would most likely live in a small Iowa town.ReplyDelete
Yeah, there's quite a few small towns we're looking at. We're going very slow. I do not want to make a hasty decision we'll regret, so we're just poking around looking at what is available. I doubt much will happen before next spring.Delete