Event: Getting Your House Ready For "The Big One"

Earthquake Preparedness Class!!

Come to the Architectural Heritage Center’s discussion coming up on May 11 from 10am-12pm.

“The Pacific Northwest and the Portland area face the threat of impending earthquakes. This program examines what Portland-area homeowners can do to increase the chance that their houses will survive. Dr. Scott Burns, retired professor of geology at Portland State University and international speaker, will explain the complex seismic fault lines that run through the Portland area and how buildings behave in an earthquake. Steve Gemmell, owner of Earthquake Tech, will describe the step-by-step procedure for bolting your house and other improvements that can help your house in a seismic event. Troy Noland, independent agent with Farmers Agency Insurance, will explain earthquake insurance options for homeowners.

This lecture program is held at the Architectural Heritage Center - 701 SE Grand Avenue

Seating is Limited. Pre-Registration is Highly Recommended.

Parking is on-street (free on Saturdays) or in the parking lot on the west side of Grand Avenue between SE Yamhill and Belmont Streets - just to the north of the Urbanite. Thank you to Bolliger and Sons Insurance for sharing their lot with us for our evening and Saturday education programs.

Photo: Damaged house from the 1994 Northridge earthquake in California. Courtesy of FEMA.”


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Hottest Exterior Paint Colors for 2019

Check out what some of the most successful paint companies say are the hottest exterior house colors of the year. One tip: Do something different than what your neighbors chose.

Behr says “Greige” ( a combo of grey and beige)
Benjamin Moore says Off-White or Light Grey
Clark & Kensington says a Pink/Rosy Greige looks good
Glidden says a Yellowish Cream
Sherwin-Williams says a Light Grey, White or Blue
Valspar says “if you’re feeling bold” you can paint the house a nice, cool Blue

Read the full article here.

Oregon Rent Control Is In Effect

Oregon House Bill 608 has passed and it’s full of complex new rules for landlords and tenants. There is a cap on annual rents, plus new restrictions for evictions. Some exceptions are allowed, but not many. If you are a landlord or a tenant, you’ll want to stay up on these new laws and hire an attorney to help you with any questions along the way. Multifamily NW is one resource to keep you ahead of all of these changes; they offer classes, updated legal forms, and can answer questions over the phone.

Here is the entire House Bill.
See a summary of the Bill here.

Remodeling: Cost vs. Value

I get asked a lot what projects provide the highest return on investment. The main thing to know is that there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer. That is because the neighbors directly around you have everything to do with what your house value is. If your neighbors take good care of their house, it impacts your value. Additionally, if your neighbors are putting in high end finishes in their remodel then you can probably expect a higher return on yours than if your neighbors all have outdated kitchens and bathrooms. You don’t want to “over-improve” for your particular location and market.
There are some general guidelines that are helpful. Here are a few example Portland statistics for you:

Mid-range Major Kitchen Remodel:
Cost $58,124  –  Home Value Increase $44,268  –  Cost Recoup 76.2%
(That is 10% higher return than the national average)

Mid-range Average Bathroom Remodel:
Cost $17,360 – Home Value Increase $12,798 – Cost Recoup 73.7%
(Right about at the national average)

The takeaway: it might be a great time to add upgrades to your home. But be mindful about the cost of finishes and to not over-improve for your neighborhood. If you’d like me to come by and give you my take on you ideas, I’d be more than happy to!