Do You Want to Know What the Salem, Oregon Real Estate Market Is Like?
The average sales price in the Salem/Keizer area for a single family home is just under $200,000. Homes are selling at an average of 99% of list price and experiencing steady appreciation of five to ten percent per year. New construction is very active in the Willamette Valley, particularly in and around Keizer and its environs. Wonderful new homes totaling 1,800 square feet in master planned communities have an average sales price of $235,000.
Salem has a wide variety of neighborhoods, each with its own character and ambiance, offering inviting homes at every price point. The most desirable neighborhoods are located within the city’s two historic districts known as Old Salem and Gaiety Hill. Southeast Salem encompasses the gorgeous and historic residential part of Old Salem. 2000 homes dating from the late 1800s all the way to the present in a wide variety or architectural styles, with ornate Victorians particularly prized, share the neighborhood with four parks, two elementary schools, four churches and the Mission Hill Museum.
Within this neighborhood lies the Salem Downtown Historic District, which was officially listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2001. The district is a seven-block area bounded by Ferry, High, Chemeketa and Front Streets. Of the 92 buildings within the district, 67% contribute to its historic character, which is significant for its collection of diverse commercial architectural styles.
Gaiety Hill/Bush's Pasture Park Historic Residential District was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1986 and is set around the Bush House and Deepwood Estate. This area evolved from what was originally a suburb of large estates with grand homes and farm houses to a city neighborhood of bungalows during the sixty years from 1878 to 1938. The highly sought after homes on Gaiety Hill, along with those on three sides of the Bush House and Pasture have retained their original character since that time. Oregon encourages historical preservation of property, offering owners a special tax assessment program if they will hold an annual open house open to the public for four consecutive hours.
Old West Salem is the area of the city located west of the Willamette River originally laid out in 1889, incorporated as West Salem in 1914, and merged with Salem in 1949. In 2001, the city launched an ambitious redevelopment program for West Salem, which includes rehabilitation and preservation of historic architecture plus parks and public infrastructure development. All of these goals are encouraged by the city with a variety of incentive programs available to homebuyers and developers. Homes in West Salem offer some of the best values in terms of size and character for the price.
Southeast Keizer is one of Keizer’s oldest and most diverse neighborhoods with traditional homes and apartments surrounded by service business, retail shops, grocery stores and entertainment venues as well as the city’s only bowling alley. There is one middle school, one elementary school, a neighborhood park and community center.
West Keizer is a highly desirable with a mix of longtime residents and young families. Lots tend to be larger here compared to other parts and homes may be graced by river views. The river is an integral part of the neighborhood with neighbors congregating on the banks and children playing near the water. Keizer’s sole high school is in the neighborhood and its sports and extra curricular activities provide a rallying point for the entire city. There is also one elementary school in the neighborhood, two parks and the city has also secured more than 100 acres of ground along the Willamette River for a project called Keizer Rapids Park.
Salem and Keizer both have a number of loan and grant programs for homeowner and homebuyers to support rehabilitation and purchase of residential structures. The Lead Based Paint Abatement Program for Rental Housing provides assistance to property owners who rent to low and moderate income households to meet city and national housing quality standards and to remove the health hazard of lead based paint. The Low Income Home Ownership Assistance Program aids qualified home buyers to purchase a home through grants or loans by reducing the cost of monthly debt service. The Single Family Homeowner Rehabilitation Program offers financial assistance to property owners with lower and moderate incomes in Salem to meet the requirements of the Salem Housing Code and HUD Minimum Housing Quality Standards. There is also a program for emergency repairs providing funding to eliminate fire, life and safety issues in homes.
The Single Family Rehabilitation Loan Program provides financial assistance to homeowners with incomes not exceeding 80% of the Salem area median income in order to rehabilitate their home to substantially meet the requirements of the Salem Housing Code and the Keizer Housing Code. The home covered by this loan must be within either the Salem or Keizer city limits and property owners must occupy the single family residence in need of rehabilitation. The limits on loans and grants are up to $35,000 for rehabilitation of property and up to $10,000 for lead-based paint abatement. These loans with a 0% interest rate are administered by the Urban Development Division of the Salem-Keizer Consortium.
The Low and Moderate Income Home Ownership Assistance Program helps qualified first time home buyers in either Keizer or Salem to purchase a residence with a very low down payment and affordable mortgage payments. To qualify an applicant’s household income must not exceed 80% of the Salem area median income. Rates are 3% with interest ceasing to accrue after 20 years.