Discover fabulous views from amazing properties in Southwest Washington

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

2024 Trends Looking Good

If you are looking to upgrade your view this year trends are suggesting that conditions for buying may improve as we roll through the first half of 2024. Interest rates seem to have stabilized recently with some favorable drops in typical rates as well as an outlook for mild improvement. That will help buyers and sellers will enjoy modest pricing improvement as we progress through the year. 

View property is almost always sold at a premium but typically view property will hold its value a little better than properties without a view. Clark County offers view opportunities and just about every price range from $400,000 to $17 million. There is just about every kind of view from lakes to rivers, to hills and mountains, and cityscapes. We have the view for you!

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Kirkland Nearly Topped at Palisades

Google Earth 2023
Kirkland's The Ledges is a large 7 floor condo and apartment project on the bluff at Columbia Palisades is nearly topped out. With a two story concrete podium and five levels of wood frame units above this is the largest project to date in the former quarry. It follows a townhouse development that completed last year on the same bluff. Perched up over the former quarry and SR-14, these two projects will offer spectacular views of the Columbia River and the bright twinkling lights of Portland and East Multnomah County. Columbia Palisades has seen a slowish start but the East Vancouver neighborhood that straddles the city line with Camas is likely to see some increased activity as more commercial development is built to support the area. So far Vancouver Clinic has build a location in the development and there are plans for a lot more. I would imagine that some additional residential will need to complete to support the new retail businesses.

Meanwhile on the west side of SE 192nd Avenue, Hurly is working on the HQ development that will bring housing and retail to the other side of the former quarry. These two developments will likely feed off each other and form a bustling east side urban center with excellent highway access to SR-14 and I-205. This will be a great neighborhood and you can already buy units at Boulder Ridge on Ascension Drive.

What ever you do, enjoy the view!

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Soft Pricing Makes View Condos Attainable

Pricing has softened up a bit on many of Vancouver's condos including Parkview at Vancouver Center and Shorewood. Condos with decent views are now back in the upper 200's to $400k. Using the tracking of condos on Urban Living in the Couv you can see some reasonable values on units in both Shorewood and Parkview. 

At Parkview there is a 7th floor unit facing the park with nice views over the park towards the waterfront. It's listed at $379,900. It is a smaller unit with 1 bed and 1 bath and 428 SF. There is also a larger unit on the 6th floor facing east but it is a corner unit and has a view between two other towers of Mount Hood. Hardly a sweeping view but pretty solid. That unit is 2 beds and 2 baths with 879 SF. 

Shorewood West has a large 1 bed 1 bath unit with over 1000 SF and a view from the patio of the Columbia River and the West Hills. That unit is priced at $350,000. Shorewood East has a 2 bed 2 bath unit with 1128 SF listed at $309,000

Parkview is urban with everything being walkable. Shorewood is up on a bluff with nice views and excellent amenities. Christmas can be a good time to buy a condo!

Happy Holidays!


Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Another Look at Amboy

This article originally appeared on this blog in 2017 and has been slightly edited to reflect current housing trends.

Amboy Washington is a charming little hamlet about a dozen miles north of Battle Ground on SR503. Although the town itself has views limited to the local territorial hills and forest, the higher areas around the town are filled with fabulous homes on 5 acre lots. Some of these offer up tremendous views of our mighty Mount St. Helens, Mount Adams and even a couple peeks at the monster of the west, Mount Rainier.

I recently showed an amazing property in Amboy back in 2017, that had this view of St. Helens off the large deck. The picture was taken with a wide angle so the mountain was MUCH CLOSER than it looks. From this vantage point the angry volcano was only 24 miles away.

Amboy is one of those locations that many people consider to be 'way out' in the country. This notion that it is so far away helps keep property values more affordable. the reality is that it is still only 45 minutes to PDX maybe 60 with some traffic. For the adventurous outdoorsy crowd Amboy is tough to beat. It is located just a few miles from the Lewis River lakes of Merwin, Yale, and Swift and thousands of acres of DNR and Gifford Pinchot Forest Land.

Homes that would cost $600,000 $800,000 or more in Ridgefield with this kind of view can be had for under $500k $650k in Amboy. Sometimes that little bit of extra drive can shave mountains of cash of the price of property.

Amboy, Washington is almost entirely rural and most of the homes are on small acreage 2-6 acres, but there are some giant rancheria type properties as well with 10, 20 even 50 plus acres. Be sure to check out Amboy and be sure to enjoy the view.

Tuesday, October 17, 2023

Beware of Drone Only Views

I have been perusing through properties on the MLS that are marked as "view" properties and I found yet again agents marketing properties as having a view but not a single photo from the ground or house shows any meaningful view. Then the drone shot from a few hundred feet above the property shows this lovely view.

This is unfortunately rather deceptive and buyers may arrange to view the property expecting a view, only to be disappointed that the view is limited to your drone unit buzzing overhead. If you are a buyer and a view is a big part of your selection be sure to ask your agent to verify the house actually has a view if the only view photos in the listing are from a drone.

Agents can get away with a little deception on this issue because a view is highly subjective. Who is really to say what a view is or is not. A lovely view of the neighbors wrecking yard, look at all those lovely fall tones on the rusted metal ;) 

As a long time agent specializing in city condos and view properties I always show a picture of the "view" I am pitching. If I say there is a Mount Hood view then by golly there is a Mount Hood view. If it is seasonal then I say seasonal. If it is partially obstructed or peek-a-boo then I say so. Deception is not a good look for an agent but that doesn't stop some from wearing it. 

Drone images serve a purpose beyond a view. They show the surrounding area around the listing or in the case of rural acreage an overview of the property that is difficult to show from the ground. So I am not at all opposed to using them in listings. But if the property is listed as having a view, the agents ought to show a photo of that view from the property.


Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Port of Camas & Washougal Getting Apartments

Rendering of future development
The Port of Camas and Washougal has been working hard on a large redevelopment project that is bringing new mid-rise apartment buildings to Parkers Landing. Although not on a scale we have seen in Vancouver, this will bring some high density development to the area and the location right on the shores of the Columbia River should offer some spectacular views of the Gorge, Mount Hood, and the river itself. Whether or not condos will be in the mix is still yet to be seen. It would be nice to have the opportunity to own a unit in this new development area.

Camas and Washougal offer a more suburban style of living with close proximity to the Gorge and a less hectic bustle in town. Both cities have lovely downtown areas with the classic small town charm that Vancouver struggles to present these days. The Port of Camas Washougal has a website setup to follow the activity and progress on this excellent new neighborhood. Check it out here.

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

The Columbia Remains a Favorite View

The mighty Columbia River rolls past the entire east west length of Vancouver with dozens of neighborhoods enjoying excellent views of one of the largest rivers on the continent. This has become a preferred view object and thousands of homes have been built with the intention of offering a glimpse. From the panoramic to the peek-a-boo, a view of the Columbia is a hot commodity.

Views of the river can be had in modestly priced properties especially looking at Shorewood Condominiums where units priced in the 200s can offer a decent view. Spectacular views from bluff top homes or from the actual shore of the river can get rather spendy with prices routinely deep into seven figures. 

For buyers that appreciate a good view homes are available in most price ranges offering a little more than a peek-a-boo view of the Columbia. It may take time to find something suitable in your price range but it does exist.

It seems that water views command the biggest premium, views of the mighty Cascades and territorial views of mountains and hills can be found at more reasonable premiums. 

Vancouver is also able to offer these lovely water views and mountain views from every kind of neighborhood from the rural to suburban to high-rise urban. Whatever your flavor it can be found in Clark County.