Shelli’s & Susan’s Guide to Portland

Let us Help You Find a Home and a Neighborhood

Welcome to our website about the Portland, Oregon, metropolitan area. It’s our way of helping you become acquainted with the neighborhoods and communities of the Portland metro area and to inform you about the Portland area housing market. Your comments and suggestions about the website are always welcome. 

If you have questions or if you’re interested in buying or selling a home in the Portland area, contact us online or call Susan at (503) 497-2984 or Shelli at (503) 497-5061.


Susan Marthens —  Principal Real Estate Broker/CRS GRI
Shelli Gowdy — Real Estate Broker


Oregon standard "tree" plate that has been issued since 1989. This blue-on-yellow baseplate was introduced in 1975 and was issued through 1987 - you still see the plate on a few Oregon vehicles today. Custom salmon plate.  The extra proceeds from sales are used for the following: Litter Patrol Fund, Governors' Watershed Enhancement Board, and State parks. 1947 Oregon plate. Custom Crater Lake National Park Centennial plate - released in 2002.  The extra proceeds are distributed to the Litter Patrol Fund and National Park Foundation.


A second home in back, ready to age in place: Accessible ADUs

23 May 2015 — Multigenerational houses are becoming more popular as aging parents decide to live with their grown children. Designers, developers and builders are responding to the increase in need by offering homes within homes. Floor plans include at least two master suites with separate entrances. In “multigen” homes, hallways and doors are wider to at least 36 inches and there are few steps to make it easier for people with a baby stroller or a wheelchair. Wings of the main house may have pocket doors that can be closed off for privacy and bonus rooms that can be easily converted into bedrooms. Homeowners are also remodeling to transform garages into decked-out dwellings for aging family members. Another way to have elderly parents close by but still allow everyone to lead semi separate lives is to build an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) — a second small home — on the property. A few detached homes that have universal design or aging-in-place features will be part of the Build Small, Live Large: Portland’s 2nd Annual Accessory Dwelling Unit Tour, a series of events to be held May 29-31. (Tickets start at $35, with discounts until May 23).  Read more…

On the market: Homes with private elevators get a lift

23 May 2015 — When the Otis Elevator Co. started manufacturing a machine that safely lifted people up multiple stories in a building, the value of urban real estate jumped. A patch of land was once limited by a person’s tolerance to ascend stairs. The introduction of a zippy “vertical transportation system” in the 1850s broke through that ceiling. Elevators impacted the value of top-tier single-family homes, too. The first residential elevator — a counterweight lift — was built for Louis XV for his personal chambers in Versailles. Mansions in the United States in the early 1900s had them.   Read more…

Portland-area rents rising nearly twice as fast as home values

21 May 2015 — As a rapid run-up in home prices is beginning to slow, rents are higher than ever and rising fast, putting up more obstacles for renters who want to become homeowners. The real estate website Zillow says the average home value in the Portland are a climbed 4.7 percent over the past year, landing at $282,900 in April. Rents, meanwhile, climbed 8.6 percent year-over-year, reaching an average of $1,614 a month. The increase was the sixth-highest among the 34 metro areas Zillow analyzed. Rising rental costs might make homeownership more appealing to renters, but it might also hurt their ability to access it.   Read more…


Oregon’s state parkland sale to coastal golf developer unprecedented

24 May 2015 — The Bandon State Natural Area wasn’t for sale when Mike Keiser came knocking. But approached with an increasingly appealing offer from the Chicago-based developer, and pressure from Oregon’s former governor John Kitzhaber, the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has agreed to privatize 280 acres of the state’s public coast so Keiser can turn it into a golf course. Such a move is unprecedented in Oregon, where coastal land is so beloved the state Legislature voted in 1967 to keep the shoreline public, and then bought additional acreage all along its 363 miles. The result is a network of more than 80 properties so popular they include seven of Oregon’s 10 most-visited parks.   Read more…

Tualatin River Water Trail project paddles onward

24 May 2015 — More than two decades ago, rafting advocates first floated the idea of designating the lower 40 miles of the Tualatin River as a water trail. Now, with big pushes from Metro, user-groups and towns and cities perched along the slow-moving river’s meandering course, the idea is making some waves. “A lot of things are happening right now to help make the Tualatin River water trail a reality,” said Mary Ordal, project manager in the city of Hillsboro’s Parks and Recreation Department. “So many critical pieces are falling into place.” The water trail, as formally embraced by the Metro Council in 2011, is a network of launch points, resting areas and attractions for canoers, kayakers, paddle boarders, floatation devices. Anything, in other words, that’s non-motorized.   Read more…

‘Iris capital of the world’ is in full bloom: See most colors of the rainbow

24 May 2015 — The flower that captivated Vincent Van Gogh is in full bloom in Oregon and Washington, and making iris fans from around the world swoon. Anita Lampley listed visiting the famous iris gardens here on her bucket list. Now the South Carolina resident can check that off. She and her husband Randy planned their six-week road trip around the spring bloom, especially at Schreiner’s Iris Gardens in Salem. “I have been buying irises from Schreiner’s for more than 30 years,” says Lampley, standing among sweetly scented fields on Saturday morning. “I feel as if I’ve died and gone to heaven.”   Read more…

Pinot pioneers: Willamette Valley wine industry looks back at first 50 years

23 May 2015 — Small farms, acres of open fields, some berries and vegetables. Livestock here and there. Fifty years ago, McMinnville, Dundee and Newberg were small, out-of-the-way towns that grew food crops, if anything. There weren’t tasting rooms on every block. There weren’t blue road signs notifying tourists which wineries were available ahead. There weren’t tourists. But there was a textbook salesman, hopping out of his car to collect soil samples and look up climate data every so often as he drove the Pacific Northwest. David Lett was searching for the perfect place to plant pinot noir, a French wine grape he had fallen in love with in Burgundy. Lett visited several countries in Northern Europe, buried himself in historical weather and soil information and went out of his way to scour each area he thought might fit his ideal profile and have available land.   Read more…

Oregon puts an end to conversion therapy for youth

23 May 2015 — Basic Rights Oregon has officially made the announcement that Oregon is banning conversion therapy for Youth. Joining Governor Kate Brown, Basic Rights Oregon signed HB 2307, the Youth Mental Health Protection Act. This act bans conversion therapy for minors by mental health providers. “There are many things our young people need, but breaking them down based on their sexual or gender identity is not one of them. In fact, it is inexcusable. Our young people deserve acceptance, support, and love. To the young people who question their identities, suffer from bullying, or struggle with what it means to come out, today is for you,” said Governor Brown.   Read more… 

Should Portland taxpayers pitch in $1.9 million for track event? Mayor Hales says yes

23 May 2015 — Next March, athletes from more than 200 countries will descend on Portland for the World Indoor Track and Field Championships – the first time the event will be on U.S. soil in nearly 30 years. Organizers envision a $12 million extravaganza starting with the U.S. Indoor Track and Field Championships the week before,with both events at the Oregon Convention Center. Portland Mayor Charlie Hales is all in. In a departure from his proposed “back-to-basics” budget, the mayor has agreed to spend $1.9 million to help showcase the event and offer related activities.   Read more…

New Listings in the City of Portland

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3131 Sw Champlain Dr Portland, OR 97205

Price $985,000
Beds 4
Baths 4
Living Area SqFt 3,688
Status Active
MLS # 15256600
Property Type Detachd

1625 Nw Johnson St Portland, OR 97209

Open House
Price $825,000
Beds 3
Baths 3 full, 1 half
Living Area SqFt 2,905
Status Active
MLS # 15152881
Property Type Detachd

2123 Se Cesar E Chavez Blvd Portland, OR 97214

Price $739,000
Beds 5
Baths 2 full, 1 half
Living Area SqFt 3,281
Status Active
MLS # 15089429
Property Type Detachd

Homes for Sale in the City of Portland Under $400,000

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9824 Sw Quail Post Rd Portland, OR 97219

Price $399,999
Beds 5
Baths 3
Living Area SqFt 2,804
Status Active
MLS # 15072603
Property Type Detachd

2336 Sw Osage St 404 Portland, OR 97205

Open House
Price $399,999
Beds 2
Baths 1
Living Area SqFt 908
Status Active
MLS # 15175461
Property Type Condo

4306 Ne 102nd Ave Portland, OR 97220

Open House
Price $399,950
Beds 3
Baths 2
Living Area SqFt 2,627
Status Active
MLS # 15180511
Property Type Detachd

To determine a property exposure to landslides and earthquakes, insert the address of the property into the LIDAR system.


New Listings by Area in the City of Portland

New Listings in Northwest Portland  ♦  New Listings in Southwest Portland  ♦  New Listings in Southeast Portland
New Listings in Northeast Portland  ♦  New Listings in North Portland 


New Listings by Community in the Portland Metro Area

New Listings in Beaverton  ♦ New listings in Hillsboro  ♦  New Listings in Lake Oswego  ♦ New Listings in Sherwood
New Listings in Tigard  ♦ New Listings in Tualatin  ♦  New Listings in West Linn