Standing in line wraps around Salt and Straw, a Portland ice cream shop with a location in lake oswego, It’s hard to feel that we’re only eight miles south of downtown. While Portland has had a long string of bad press, Lake Oswego resembles a resort town complete with cottage architecture and hanging flower baskets galore.
Filled with mostly single-family homes, Lake Oswego is centered on a picturesque and private 405-acre lake surrounded by the Oregon Forest. Residents enjoy the small town atmosphere and charming downtown area with shops, restaurants, and health amenities.
“The city has a sense of vitality and beauty because it’s clean and it feels safe,” said Lee Davies, owner and lead broker of Elite Real Estate. “A lot of downtown development is new, so it’s new.”
Known for being a healthy and social community, Lake Oswego offers water sports for those with access to the nearby lake and river. Golf courses and miles of multi-use trails make good use. Its residents pride themselves on the excellent environmental stewardship of the private lake and the high performing schools.
“If we continue to have this mentality, the city will continue to look the way it is,” said Justin Harnisch, realtor and owner/partner at Harnisch Real Estate. “Things will always progress and things will always change. But here, the change was slower, and it was gentle.”
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Located just eight miles south of Portland, Lake Oswego includes 11.35 square miles and all the homes and businesses surrounding the lake. Primarily, it covers the area between Interstate 5 on the west and Interstate 43 on the east, and extends north into the Tryon Creek Natural Area. Its jagged southern border extends almost to the Tualatin River.
“For $2.5 million to $3 million, you can get a house with brand new specifications,” said Michael Zhang, lead broker at Cascade Hasson Sotheby’s International Realty. “It’s going to be 3,000 to 4,000 square feet and it’s not going to be on the lake. Even at $3 million to $3.5 million you get high-end appliances, but that’s it. I’d consider luxury starting at $3.5 million, and that would include some homes nearby.” from the golf course.”
Lakefront homes usually sell for between $4 million and $8 million. Certainly, outliers appear in the $10 million to $20 million range.
“When you see what you get for two million dollars, it’s rather disappointing,” said Mr. Davies. “You start having fun and the homes are really nice starting at around $4 million.”
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Inventory builds up gradually as interest rates rise, and homes sell at a slower rate.
Mr. Harnisch represents the sellers of one of only 12 lakeside homes on the market. The home, listed for $5.85 million, spans 5,957 square feet and includes five bedrooms, four and a half bathrooms, and a five-car garage.
Mr. Chang works with the seller of one of the other desirable homes on the lake, which spans 5,554 square feet with four bedrooms, five bathrooms, and an outdoor pool. The property was listed in August for $8 million.
Another private lake home, represented by Mr. Davis, is for sale for $6.5 million. The 8,170-square-foot home has four bedrooms, six bathrooms, and an indoor pool.
Each home was built between 1998 and 2006 and is located on 0.23 to 0.27 acres.
What makes it unique
Unique architectural features can be found in each home on the lake. “If you take a boat on the lake, you can see custom homes that you can’t see from the road,” Mr. Zhang said. Once a year, a boat tour is offered to the public. Otherwise, the lake is closed to non-residents.
Lake Oswego contains Jantzen Island, a historic and private island said to have sold off the market last year for $20 million, Mr. Harnisch said.
Living on the lake offers a lifestyle rare above most: the ability to commute by boat. People on the lake can take their boats from their homes and dock at Stickmen’s [Lakeside Smokehouse and Brewery]said Mr Davies.
Historic Lake Oswego Hunt is a horseback riding club near the lake, with a riding academy for kids and adults. Students can take scenic rides along the trail to Mount Iron.
The city is built on abundant hills, which are popular with cyclists and runners. In addition, residents can enjoy 600 acres of parkland and open space. Oswego Lake Country Club is home to the 71st Championship Course.
Local favorites include Tasty, Breakside Brewery, Ricardo’s, Baird’s on B, and Beso Wine Bar. Speaking of, the wine region is 30 minutes from the city, and Portland International Airport is 25 minutes away. “We have everything at our fingertips without having to go to Portland,” Mr. Harnisch said.
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who lives there
Since Nike’s global headquarters is located 10 miles away in Beaverton, Oregon, many retired CEOs and executives live in Lake Oswego. Howard Slucher called Lake Oswego home.
However, a lot of out-of-state buyers have crept into town. “Whenever I have an open house, I see all the license plates from the state of California,” Mr. Chang said.
Professional athletes often buy and sell real estate there. “The list I have is an NBA basketball player who was traded to another team. Mr. Davis said.
It was rumored that Lady Gaga had moved to an enclave of the Pacific Northwest. “Lady Gaga never bought a house on the lake,” Harnisch said. “She was renting a house up the street from me.” Aside from the occasional professional athletes and executives, Lake Oswego tends to be a quiet community.
Lake Oswego’s luxury segment remains a seller’s market, but like most places, it’s changing with larger economic forces. “We’re still in a low-inventory environment. The difference is that rates have doubled,” Harnisch said. “It feels more like a buyer’s market because there’s less demand, less competition, less urgency to jump in and buy something. In the last couple of years, there’s been a lot of uptake, a lot of buyouts, and most importantly, a lot of refinancing.”
Mr. Zhang said that while the domestic market is slowing down, buyers are still ready to pounce on the right opportunity. “People are still looking. Every time I have an open house, large groups of people come in.” Over the past couple of years, people have realized how important home and home are to life.
Mr. Davies said the 12 lakefront homes have been on the market for an average of 80 days, with an average of 75 days. That’s up from last year, when similar homes sat on the market for an average of 60 days and an average of 22 days.
For their part, the Californians moved to Lake Oswego “to live in an amazingly beautiful and picturesque setting for $4 million when their $4 million home in Palo Alto wasn’t that exciting,” said Mr. Davis. “Being on a lake with a dock and boat, and being part of an incredibly cool little community that’s so lively with restaurants and shopping—it’s a destination. It’s kind of like going on vacation.”
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