PORTLAND, Ore. — Portland has a reputation as a city of devoted urbanites who never abandoned its core during the decades of suburban growth starting in the 1950s. In the '70s, it famously scrapped a planned freeway in favor of creating Pioneer Courthouse Square in downtown, the city's so-called living room.
These days, however, the square and downtown do convey abandonment, as many employees work remotely from home waiting out the pandemic and the suburbs gain enhanced appeal to those who may continue working from home long-term.
Portland's suburbs have long been a hot real estate market, long before the advent of COVID-19, as home prices spiked in close-in neighborhoods that were becoming increasingly dense with new apartment buildings and scarcer parking spaces.
In the third quarter of 2021, 7,613 homes sold in 68 metro-area suburban ZIP codes outside of Portland city limits. The average of the median sales price in those 'hoods was $530,977, while the average of median days on the market was six, based on data from the region's multiple listing service, RMLS.
By comparison, within Portland's city limits, 4,099 homes were sold at an average median sale price of $553,500, taking an average median of eight days to change hands.
Among the top 25 suburban ZIP codes that ranked highest based equally on sales, median home price and median days on market, 10 were north of the border in Clark County, Washington, nine were in westside Washington County, five were in Clackamas County southeast of the city and one was in Multnomah County.
From the exclusive mansions of Lake Oswego, to the bucolic farmlands of Hillsboro, the new subdivisions of Happy Valley and townhomes of Vancouver, the metro-area's influx of residents as well as long-timers are seeking more space and a quieter family-friendly lifestyle in the region's 'burbs. View the slideshow to see which of them experienced the most real estate fervor last quarter.