Buying a Home in Portland

Welcome to the Resource Center for the Portland Metro Area. With over 2 million residents, including suburban communities, it’s home to 47% of Oregon’s population.

First-time buyers in Portland have more choices of well-priced homes than they have in years. ————-Ryan Kofman, Buyer’s Agent, Portland, OR

Home Buying Classes at Portland Community College

Portland Homebuying 101
The popular PCC class, Homebuying 101, includes the following and more:


  • An overview of the home buying process———————–
  • How to get financing & cash to close      ——————-
  • Best loans for first time buyers
  • Negotiating a good deal
  • How to improve your credit score
  • How to find the best homes & neighborhoods
  • Inspections you need to have and repair negotiations
  • Foreclosures, bank owned and short sales
  • How to avoid the top mistakes made by first time buyers
  • Taught by the creator of

Full class description, schedules & registration

Portland Grants & Homeownership Assistance Programs

The Oregon Bond Homeownership Program

These low interest loan programs are backed by the State of Oregon.  They are subject to funds being available.
Oregon Bond Loan Program

Oregon Housing & Community Services Down Payment Assistance
Oregon Housing Downpayment Assistance Programs

Clackamas Homebuyer Assistance Program (CHAP)

The CHAP program allows home buyers to borrow up to $14,000 to pay for downpayment and closing costs on a first home. CHAP loans are zero-percent interest deferred-payment loans.

Home Sweet Home Grant Program
The Oregon Association of REALTORS® and the Oregon Bankers Association have partnered to create the HOME Sweet Home Program (HSHP).  This program is designed to help provide homeownership opportunities for Oregonians earning less than or equal to 100 percent of the median income in their area.
Homebuyer Grant Program “Home Sweet Home”

Portland Housing Center

Portland Housing Center has a number of programs for minorities & low income households.
Portland Housing Center

Good Neighbor Next Door

The Dept of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) has a home buying program for law enforcement officers, teachers and firefighters/emergency medical technicians that allows them to buy homes for half price in designated areas.

HUD:  Good Neighbor Home Buying Program or see our Lesson Good Neighbor Next Door Half Priced Homes

Portland Metro Area Schools

Information on schools and school “report cards”
Oregon Department of Education

You can also lookup school performance info for Oregon

Neighborhood & Crime Info for Portland

Portland is a well-planned city comprised of 7 distinct sections, Northwest, Northeast, Southwest, North, Central, and East Portland.  It also has 95 well-defined neighborhoods, each with it’s own Neighborhood Association which serves as a liason between its residents and the Portland City Government.

Portland Maps is a phenomenal resource for researching a specific property or area.  For example, click on “Crime” to get a very thorough detailing of not only general crime in an area, but also drill down to the individual types of crimes and where they occur.   You can also go directly to Crime Mapper for the same data in the whole Portland Metro area.  Enter an address, and then click on “Permits/Cases” and you’ll see what the City has on file regarding work done on that home and if permits have been used.  Click on “Historic Permits” to see any permits that are not so recent.  It also has information on schools, parks, property taxes, and much more.
Portland Maps

Portland Monthly Magazine has great info called Neighborhoods by the Numbers.
Portland Monthly Magazine Neighborhoods

Another innovative site that not only has neighborhood stats, restaurants, crime stats, etc. but also allows residents to enter comments, pictures, rate schools and more is

Inspection & Repair Resources for Portland

Recommended Home Inspectors
We’ve had the opportunity to see first-hand the work of many different home inspectors in the Portland area.  Hands down, the best, most thorough home inspectors we’ve found are at Assurance Home Inspections .  Checkout their sample inspection reports and you’ll see what we mean!
Assurance Home Inspections Sample Reports

Environmental Hazards
Oregon’s best source for most environmental hazards is the DEQ.  We also recommend that buyers read their section on underground storage tanks if you are buying an older home that may have a buried heating oil tank.
Oregon Dept of Environmental Quality

Additional info on Asbestos, Radon, etc.
Homeowner Resources for Asbestos, Radon, Repair Hazards

Oregon Property Buyers Advisory
The Advisory was created by the Oregon Association of Realtors as resource for you with tips and links for everything on properties from Home Warranties and Home Owners Associations to Property Taxes and Pest/Dryrot Reports.
Oregon Property Buyers Advisory

Working with Contractors
Checkout any Oregon licensed contractor, plumber, electrician, etc. and verify claims, history, insurance, etc.
Oregon Construction Contractors Board

Foreclosure Property Info & Searches

Fannie Mae now has special financing on many of their “bank owned” properties.  Here are the specifics of the loan program:

  • 3% down payment
  • Conventional rates
  • There is no Appraisal Required
  • No Mortgage Insurance necessary
  • Less than perfect credit is ok
  • Down payment can be in the form of a gift, a grant, or a loan from a nonprofit organization, state or local government or employer.

Checkout the program and search for available homes at:
Fannie Mae Foreclosure Home Search

Freddie Mac Foreclosure Home Search

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