Real Estate Information Archive


Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 12

Cut your own holiday tree in the Mt. Hood National Forest

by Liz Warren

Looking for a great holiday outing now that Thanksgiving is over? Why not head for the Mt. Hood National Forest and cut your own holiday tree? Snow levels are not that low yet so it's the perfect conditions to take a trek to the mountains and find that tree. You'll need a permit which you can get in Sandy or up at the Zig Zag Ranger Station. They're only $5.00 for the permit and there is a five tree limit per family!

check out this link for details

It's coming soon!!!!!!!

FICO Scores are VERY important these days!

by Liz Warren

How important are FICO scores these days? Extremely. If you are purchasing anything and need credit your FICO score will determine if you can get credit and what interest rate you'll pay. Credit scores range between 300 and 850.

Scores under 680 are on the fringe of scrutiny with lenders. Some will charge a much higher interest rate to borrow so it will cost you more in the end on your credit cards, your mortgage rate, and your car loan.

FICO scores come from a combination of your debt load, payment history, amount of credit you are using and other miscellaneous factors such as foreclosures or other debt defaults

A good resource to learn how to increase your FICO score and other questions about how this scoring works, go to



Book Signing Tonight with Chelsea Cain

by Liz Warren

If you are ever looking for a good book to read or just want a peak at some local artist works, you can't beat the Wy"East Book Shoppe and Art Gallery located in the Rendevous Center in Welches.

Tonight, Friday, fNovember 21st at 7:30 featured Portland author and writer for the Oregonian, Chelsea Cain will be at the store to sign books and talk about her latest books "Heartsick" and "Sweetheart"!



Sandy Ski Swap

by Liz Warren

If you are looking for a good deal on ski (Alpine and Nordic)and boarding equipment, clothing, accessories, poles and other ski related stuff you should head straight to the Sandy Ski Swap on Friday and Saturday this weekend. If you go to the Sandy high school on Friday at 6:00 to 9:00 or Saturday at 9:00-5:00 PM you can check out the great gear to purchase. Consignment and donations are accepted also. No straight skis please. There is a small admission fee to get in. Consignment items can be dropped off at the high school between 4-8 on Friday. Cash and checks only!

This is the biggest fund raiser for the Sandy High School Ski Team. Details can be found at 

There is huge inventory at great prices from Gresham's Hillcrest Ski Shop!

Monday Morning Coffee for Inspiration!

by Liz Warren
Monday Morning Coffee


"Temperance in all things!"

~ Harry S. Truman

Extreme or Temperate?

You can see it on TV almost every day - extreme football, extreme wrestling, extreme police chases, extreme everything. The TV networks seem to be competing to capture our attention with one-upsmanship to the extreme.

If you're in your 20's to mid 30's, doing things to the extreme may be attractive to you. If you're 35-45, you may be starting to question whether it's necessary to carry things quite so far. If you're over 45, your age of wisdom may have set in - leading you in another direction - towards temperance. The good news is that it's beneficial at any age.

Recently on TV, there was an old interview with Harry Truman at the age of 77. The interviewer David Susskind asked, "To what do you attribute your energy and vitality at age 77?" Truman shot back with noticeable conviction, "Temperance in all things. I take plenty of rest, sleep well at night, and eat the right foods. That leaves me ready to face the challenges of being president."

What a simple word - "temperance." Webster defines it as "moderation in action or thought; restraint; marked by moderation, as in keeping within limits." It does not mean total abstinence or prohibition of action. It is merely a concept that takes into account reasonable, self-imposed limits.

Some see temperance as "clean living." By whatever name, it can bring peace, tranquility, good health, high self-esteem, satisfaction, and financial freedom. What are your self-imposed limits?

Wine and Arts Events for the Weekend of November 15 and 16!

by Liz Warren



Check out this link to see the events scheduled for this weekend. Lots of art and wine events hosted through many local businesses.

Events and participants are at this link

Oregon Trail School Bond Passes

by Liz Warren

Dr. Shelley Redinger , superintendent of the Oregon Trail School District sends this thank you:

Negative Equity Numbers

by Liz Warren

wHow does the Mt. Hood area fair compare to other areas of the country as far as negative equity in homes? Well, I can't say specifically what happens on the mountain but it is a reflection of the general Oregon market. Sources such as First American CoreLogic says 18.3% of properties with mortgages are underwater. Most of these states are Nevada, Arizona, Florida and hard hit Michigan with the Detroit carnage.FAC says Oregon mortgages are at 7.5% underwater which, believe it or not is the 6th lowest percentage of all states. Washington is right behind us.

So, if you think it's bad around here-it isn't! It's GREAT compared to the rest of the U.S.!

Here's a little more info mapping the negative equity states from the Wall Street Journal.




Monday Morning Coffee for Inspiration

by Liz Warren
Monday Morning Coffee


"Begin to be now what you will be hereafter."

~ St. Jerome


Regardless of who you have been in the past - why not give yourself a "present"? Each of us experiences regret from time to time over what we have done - or left undone - in the past. Perhaps our transgressions were great - or just seemed so in our heart.

To become a different person in the future, St. Jerome suggests that you must "begin to be" that person now. If your career is overwhelming you, begging to be tamed, begin now to untangle it. Begin today to simplify your activities.

If you would like to be more caring, begin today by complimenting someone. Want to be more understanding? Listen carefully to one you love - today. Want greater financial independence? Analyze your income and your expenses, then earn more and live on less - beginning today.

Nothing happens until you "begin to be." Interestingly, however, the moment you BEGIN, you actually ARE the person you desire to be, provided you continue to be. The moment you change anything in your life, the past is over, forever.

Want a new beginning in your life? Don't wait for some earth-shattering, life-changing event to get your attention. Get started today!

More Updates On Foreclosures on Mt. Hood

by Liz Warren

Looking to purchase a foreclosure in the Mt. Hood Area? foreclosures are popping up in Welches, Government Camp, Rhododendron and Brightwood.

Foreclosure and Short Sales Info


Over the last 24 months, Oregon went from number 2 to having the 23rd highest foreclosure rate on a national basis. As of September 2008 there have been 2,344 foreclosure filings which equivocate to 1 filing for every 644 housing units. Foreclosure filings are up 26% from August 08 and up 139% from September 2007. The majority of these distressed properties are located in the greater Portland metropolitan area. 


In comparison, the state of California, which accounts for ~60% nationally of all foreclosure activity has 69,548 properties with foreclosure filings, equivocating to 1 in every 189 housing units.  Washington has 1 foreclosure filing out of every 1,383 housing units.


Below are some comments from our partners that actively work in this arena.


  • Most properties in foreclosure are so debt laden that they are reverting to the banks. 
  • An investor interested in buying a foreclosed property on the courthouse steps is not likely to get a good deal.
  • Banks have not been discounting the debt on these properties in order to sell them. 
  • It can cost a bank anywhere from $30K-60K plus, to take back a house.  This doesn’t include the cost of capital, refurbishment, marketing and sales costs.
  • So why are banks taking the homes back?
  • Some banks have been bundling multiple properties, with varying degrees of debt-to-market value ratios and selling them to large, institutional buyers.  This seems to be easier and more profitable for the banks right now.
  • In Multnomah County, who is buying foreclosed properties at this time? There are a few larger, private equity buyers and some individual investors.
  • The SE & NE corridors have the greatest percentage of foreclosed properties at an average value of $125K-225K.  However, more expensive properties are now entering the picture.
  • So where are some of the opportunities now?  Short Sales.

Short Sales - An option for those who have money & the time.


A short sale is where a property owner wants to sell their home but they have a higher mortgage debt on the property than the price they can sell the house for. First, seller and buyer must agree on a price and then they go to the lender with comparable homes sales data to support the decline in value plus a compelling story and documentation that proves the seller does not have the funds to pay off the entire mortgage due.  Sound simple?  Not really.  Short Sales on average take 90-120 days to complete if successfully negotiated.  Clients and real estate brokers should work with a professional who knows the ropes. 

Investment property owners who sell under a Short Sale agreement should be aware of the new exclusionary rule coming that will tax all or a portion of the ‘gain’ the home seller realizes from a short sale closing.




A big thanks for sharing this information Kim:

Kim Dodge at Usher Financial (503) 595.1600



Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 12




Contact Information

Photo of Liz Warren Real Estate
Liz Warren
Merit Properties Group - Keller Williams Realty PDX Central
Box 131
Welches OR 97067
Direct: 503-705-3090