Lauren Goché https://laurengoche.com Real Estate Agent in Portland, Oregon, with Think Realty Fri, 29 May 2020 18:22:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.4.1 https://laurengoche.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/cropped-Lauren-Goche_Web-Favicon-32x32.png Lauren Goché https://laurengoche.com 32 32 79676183 Cool AF Concordia Cape Cod https://laurengoche.com/cool-af-concordia-cape-cod/ Fri, 29 May 2020 18:08:08 +0000 https://laurengoche.com/?p=23284 $525,000 4946 NE 35th Pl. Portland, OR 97211 Link to Full Listing Photos Virtual Open House on Instagram: Sat. 5/30, 1-1:30pm Eye catching from curbside, and even more darling once you step inside, this sweet Concordia Cape Cod offers easy, stylish living on the edge of Alberta Arts. Engineered hardwood floors in the living areas, […]

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$525,000

4946 NE 35th Pl. Portland, OR 97211

Link to Full Listing Photos

Virtual Open House on Instagram: Sat. 5/30, 1-1:30pm

Click to view slideshow.

Eye catching from curbside, and even more darling once you step inside, this sweet Concordia Cape Cod offers easy, stylish living on the edge of Alberta Arts. Engineered hardwood floors in the living areas, and double paned windows that let in lots of beautiful light create a warm, inviting space to call home. The open chef’s kitchen with stainless steel appliances, pantry, granite countertops, plenty of cupboard space, and fab island provides a social hub for entertaining, as does the separate dining area. Upstairs, the two bedrooms are bright and cheery, and on the main, a third bedroom/office space expands your living options. Both baths are comfortable and classic. The basement offers an additional (and fourth!) bedroom, with a huge closet. Be prepared for hot PDX summers with A/C to keep you cool. Step outside to a deck overlooking a neat, manicured backyard that awaits your summertime leisure and gardening aspirations. Electric car charging station in the driveway! All of this awesomeness is located in one of Portland’s most coveted communities, with great transit, access to Alberta Arts shops and restaurants, leafy parks, Kennedy School, New Seasons, and a Bike Score of 96!

4 bed / 2 bath
HES: 5
1,832 total square foot
Full set of listing photos

 

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Portland REALTOR® Lauren Goché’s Top 10 Affordable Things You Can Do To Prep Your Home to Sell https://laurengoche.com/portland-realtor-lauren-goches-top-10-affordable-things-you-can-do-to-prep-your-home-to-sell/ Fri, 15 May 2020 00:48:39 +0000 https://laurengoche.com/?p=23255 Thinking about selling your home in Portland? Every spring, sellers start to get serious about listing their homes, and even though we’re in the midst of a pandemic, we’re in for a very busy summer market. Usually by March/April, we’re used to a hot hot hot real estate market, and it seems that this year […]

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Thinking about selling your home in Portland? Every spring, sellers start to get serious about listing their homes, and even though we’re in the midst of a pandemic, we’re in for a very busy summer market. Usually by March/April, we’re used to a hot hot hot real estate market, and it seems that this year we can still expect a VERY active real estate market—it’s just instead of March/April, we’re looking at things heating up big time come May/June. I’m just as surprised as you are, but for many, life must go on, and you might be like many others who want to sell their home. 

If you’re thinking about selling your home in Portland this year, then hopefully you can use some of this extra time at home (thanks quarantine!) to spruce up your abode. Some people may not know this, but as a real estate agent, I don’t just show up when it’s time to list your home—it’s 100% my jam to advise sellers on how to prepare their homes for sale, too! I’m literally here to help you through the ENTIRE home selling process, and this can (ideally) begin several months in advance of when you actually want to list your home. 

Taking time to plan ahead is important because investing energy and resources into freshening up your house can not only translate to the successful sale of your home, but can also mean selling for over asking/multiple offers (it’s always nice to have options!). 

Luckily, prepping your home to sell in Portland doesn’t have to break the bank, and there are a few *very* affordable things that can give your home a fab refresh. (Plus, since I work with lots of home buyers, too, I know exactly what they’re looking for!!) And don’t worry—you don’t have to be a home renovation expert for any of this. “Youtube University” is your friend, and you can learn how to do pretty much anything over there. 

Here are my top 10 recommendations for affordable updates that’ll get you the biggest bang for your buck: 

1. Change out lighting throughout your home. 


Lighting is one of the biggest things you’ll want to focus on. Many people don’t think much about lighting when they’re prepping their homes, but once they update lights… then WOW. The transformations that are possible are actually kind of mindblowing, and lighting can set the tone for the entire house. 

Switch out those dated fixtures hanging over your kitchen island, add a statement piece in the dining room, and give bathrooms instant makeovers with new light fixtures over the mirrors. Now is a great time to upgrade to energy efficient bulbs, too, if you haven’t already. This is an affordable upgrade that can make suuuuuuch a huge difference. Do it!

 

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2. Paint your front door. 

First impressions are a very real and important thing, and having a front door that really pops! can instantly take your curb appeal to the next level. Bright front doors have become more popular in recent years and can help your listing stand out + be more memorable when people are browsing through 100s of homes in the same neighborhood. This is definitely one of those transformations that’s cheap but packs a big punch. 

3. Change out the front porch light.

Speaking of first impressions… alright, this one isn’t as sexy as giving your door a vibrant “look at me!” makeover, but changing out your front porch light is one of those subtle things that helps secure you that ever sought-after curb appeal. And of course, it *must* be done if your front porch light is on its last legs…. the last thing you want is a flickering light to greet potential buyers.

4. Change out house numbers.

This is another quick fix that can instantly modernize and refresh the look of your home’s exterior. It’s not expensive, and you can bang it out in a few minutes. 

5. Paint kitchen cabinets. 

If your kitchen is a bit dated and the thought of doing a complete remodel makes you want to hurl, a fresh coat of paint might be just what the doctor ordered. Painting kitchen cabinets is HANDS DOWN the easiest and cheapest way to update your kitchen.

Just look at the before and after pics of this kitchen… they even painted the backsplash tile! Painting the upper cabinets white gave the entire space an instant lift, and also helped the space feel more open and cheerful.

6. Change out your kitchen cabinet pulls. 

This is an economical way to completely transform the aesthetic of your kitchen (and this works in bathrooms, too!) without having to rip out all of the cabinetry and spend a fortune on new stuff. Switching out cabinets to something more sleek and modern can take your kitchen from 2000 to 2020 in an afternoon. 

 

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7. Change out faucets. 

Similar to switching out hardware, updating your faucets can have a major impact on aesthetics. Having older faucets can make a space look really dated, but when you freshen up a kitchen or bathroom with a new faucet, suddenly it gives the whole countertop space a new lease on life (without having to necessarily update counters). 

 

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8. Paint rooms. 

Painting your home to prep it to sell is a different endeavor than painting a home you want to keep living in. You have to think about what is going to make your home look its best to the most people, and because of this, many people like to paint their interiors completely white when they go to sell. Simple, crisp white can help spaces feel bigger, cleaner, and gives your home that “new car” feel (and smell). 

However, choosing a color might look different for you depending on your space, and sometimes bold is better! I recommend consulting with your real estate agent on this (and really any upgrades) since they’ll be able to advise you on what will be best for your unique home and each different space. 

9. Landscaping.

 

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Especially if you’re willing to put in some elbow grease, landscaping can be a financially friendly way to give your entire property a boost. Get your lawn looking park-perfect (this will require advance prepping if you need to fill in patches with new grass), freshen up bark (but do this well in advance of tours so any compost/manure smell is gone!), and add in strategic color via colorful flowers (make sure you’re choosing blooms that will thrive in each space, and hopefully you can choose flowers that are blossoming as you take listing photos + start hosting tours). 

If you have an outdoor entertaining area, you’ll want to make this space look its best, too. This is *especially* important right now since so many of us are spending extra time at home, and right now is prime season for spending time outdoors here in Portland. 

 

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Pressure wash your patio or deck to get rid of that winter grime (more on this in #10), clear away overgrown brush and weed garden beds, and help buyers really envision what it will be like to spend a warm summer’s night sipping a cold beer in their very own outdoor oasis. Outdoor furniture can help with this, and simple touches like brightly hued rugs, accent pillows, and a string of glowing lights can do wonders for minimal $$$. 

10. Pressure wash.

You might think you need to install a new walkway, a new patio or deck, or new siding on your home… when really you just need to give these things a good scrub. Pressure washers are your friend, and they can take something OLD to practically NEW in merely minutes. Seriously. If you don’t have a pressure washer, borrow or rent one! 

***

These days, selling a house is basically internet dating! All of these seemingly little updates are like putting on a fresh coat of lip gloss before you snap your profile pic, and using natural lighting and a photo filter to your advantage… they’re quick, simple things that can make a huge difference. Most buyers already did their preliminary research online before COVID-19, but now with people not leaving their homes as frequently, online home searches (and therefore the photos of your home!) are more important than ever. 

Have a question about selling your home in Portland, Oregon? I’m here to help you figure out this process from start to finish! You can get in touch with me here.

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Not Your Grandma’s Craftsman https://laurengoche.com/not-your-grandmas-craftsman/ Thu, 19 Mar 2020 19:46:37 +0000 https://laurengoche.com/?p=23227 $695,000 3326 NE 60th Ave. Portland, OR 97213 ** Virtual Open Houses, Only ** Facebook Live Open House Event Page Link to Full Listing Photos Get a load of this stunner on a sweet and leafy street! This Rose City Park Craftsman is a coveted mix of old and new, with smart decisions to preserve […]

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$695,000

3326 NE 60th Ave. Portland, OR 97213

** Virtual Open Houses, Only **

Facebook Live Open House Event Page

Link to Full Listing Photos

Click to view slideshow.

Get a load of this stunner on a sweet and leafy street! This Rose City Park Craftsman is a coveted mix of old and new, with smart decisions to preserve the vintage details while updating to modern standards. Classic wainscoting, wood floors, and darling built-ins will charm your pants off, and the bright and open living room with gas fireplace and large windows is so hygge. Open kitchen was remodeled in 2020, with quartz counters, rolling kitchen island, new tile and hood range, energy efficient stainless steel appliances, and loads of pantry space. The large bedroom on the main has a rad walk-in closet, and the cheerful vintage (but updated!) bath with claw foot tub will make you swoon. Upstairs you’ll discover an EPIC master suite with sexy vaulted ceilings and skylights, kitchenette, and full bath – all with separate entrance, and a current income producer on Airbnb. Downstairs, yet another 2 bedrooms, full bath, living area, and so much space. A/C for the coming warmer months. The fenced backyard is private, manicured, with a deck begging for al fresco dinners. Amazing location. AWESOME house. Get ready to fall in love, hard.

5 bed / 3 bath
HES: 5
2,958 total square foot
Full set of listing photos

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Love in the Time of Coronavirus https://laurengoche.com/love-in-the-time-of-coronavirus/ Sat, 14 Mar 2020 01:58:28 +0000 https://laurengoche.com/?p=23191 Whew…fuck! Does anyone else feel like they’ve been completely put through the wringer this week? Between juggling two brand new listings, a kitchen remodel in my own home, and just LIFE stuff, I (like you) have been pummeled with anxiety-inducing articles, and “Breaking News!” alerts on the coronavirus…and we’ve only just begun. Fortunately we live […]

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Whew…fuck! Does anyone else feel like they’ve been completely put through the wringer this week? Between juggling two brand new listings, a kitchen remodel in my own home, and just LIFE stuff, I (like you) have been pummeled with anxiety-inducing articles, and “Breaking News!” alerts on the coronavirus…and we’ve only just begun. Fortunately we live in Portland, OR, a city/state that’s known for taking smart actions for public safety, and everyone’s coming together to mitigate the spread of the virus, from government to small businesses. And it’s the latter who will really feel the lasting financial impact of recommended “social distancing”.

Lots of people I love and trust are coming up with EXCELLENT ideas on how to support our industry folk, local artists, small businesses, you name it, while also supporting our friends, family, neighbors, and, yep, ourselves. I’m compiling (and crediting, where possible) their ideas, actions, and suggestions in the one place (here!), so that these ideas can continue to be shared and adopted, and together we can get through this by being community strong. That’s the Portland way, after all.

Coronavirus 101: Maintain social distance, wherever possible, and especially if you’re sick. Cough into your elbow, not the Indian buffet. Don’t hoard groceries and necessities, please. Wash your damn hands thoroughly, with soap and warm water, and when you’ve finished washing them (20+ seconds), wash them again. Got that? Okay, onto the rest…

Support Your Local Everybody

“That t-shirt from your fave local band, a mixed CD from a local rapper, or whatever merch people hock these days – BUY IT. If you’re gonna be working from home, you can now listen to what YOU want and not the easy listening station that Karen forces you to endure. From make-up to clothes, small gyms to shoes – our mom and pop shops need us. While you’re likely tempted to order a new item off Amazon, reach out to your local retailer and see if they can post some pics to Facebook or Instagram of what’s in stock. It’s just like shopping online, but you’re helping our community”. – Leslie Heindel

Artists – painters, potters, tattooists, musicians, photographers, etc – have been/will be hit super freaking hard by this, not least because so many of the upcoming Conventions and festivals that they sell their art at have been indefinitely postponed – and many of these events charge for a booth upfront (so artists are currently struggling to get their refunds, on booths AND accommodations). Here’s some ideas on how to support your local artists:

1. Buy their art. No shit, it’s that easy. Find their Etsy or website, and buy their prints, photos, anything.

2. Share their art. Encourage your buddies to share links, patreons, etc, to your fave local artists, encourage everyone to buy art. This is actually a positive to what’s going on right now, because we could all use more art in our lives, right? Make a post on Facebook or wherever you kids hang out and ask for artist recommendations (local is best, but nbd if not). It’ll be fun seeing which artists your friends and family are into, and you might just find a new fave. Keeping artists elevated and visible will help them pay their bills during this tough time.

3. Are you a freelance artist, or have artist friends in your circle? Lots of support resources are popping up, and here’s a good one to share with your people.

My Personal Tips:

1. If you’re ordering take out, order two dishes – one to eat now, and one to take home for later. This’ll cut in half your interactions at a restaurant, keeping everyone safer.

2. I started a group chat with my neighbors! If you know me, you know I live on a VERY social street, and love connecting with my neighbors over pretty much anything. Now, I’ve got neighbors offering places for me to prepare meals (since my kitchen is a hot mess), offers of extra dinners…and we’re basically just looking out for each other. This is especially important if you have neighbors who were already socially isolated pre-coronavirus – let’s look out for our elderly and differently abled neighbors, y’all. Your local Buy Nothing group is another awesome way to stay connected with people in your area – already, members are offering grocery deliveries and assistance to those in need.

3. SHARE YOUR BOUNTY. I already subscribe to regular toilet paper deliveries, so that was never a concern for me. If you have excess of items that are in demand? Share them!

4. Think about where you are privileged over others. Do you already work from home, and have a business/job that will largely be unaffected by the outbreak? Do you have a great support network already in place? Do you have a cushy financial situation that won’t be stressed under the circumstances? Examine where you’re better off than others, and act accordingly. I’m not suggesting you give away your entire savings, but try to recognize weaknesses in society and try to help those who will be hit the hardest. After all, it’s not their fault they’re in duress, and they were likely just scraping by before coronavirus was a thing.

Local Businesses Taking Control:

I’ve seen posts and newsletters and updates from so many of our local businesses, and it’s been really freaking inspiring to see how they’re innovating during the crisis. Here’s a couple of examples of ones that stood out for me:

P’s & Q’s Marketplace: This sweet and rustic Woodlawn deli/grocery store/restaurant put out a post stating that they’re amping up their (already diligent) cleaning/hygiene practices, and are now offering “curbside” delivery for take out meals – so you just order, roll up to the door, call/text them, and they’ll run your order out to you. It’s initiatives like this that will help keep everyone safer. Go see their post on Facebook for more info.

Pic + quote are thanks to Pistils.

Pistils: Yep, a boutique plant nursery gave me chills when their newsletter came out, and not the kinda chills that require a trip to the ER (can we joke about this yet, or too soon?). Here’s what they wrote: “In trying times like these, we’re turning to our plants for support, and finding comfort in their resilience and growth. Taking a moment to slow down and care for our plants – to prune and water, to repot and fertilize, to get the first veggie seeds in the ground – is a centering experience that helps us cope with anxiety. Studies show that plants help keep us calm and focused, reducing stress. In many ways, we believe that plant care is self care.” *brb, using actual tears to mist houseplants*

Hollywood Theater: This Portland institution came out hard and fast with assurances on cleanliness, limiting exposure, and, most importantly, providing sick leave and support to their employees.

Buy a meal, get a gift card, become a member. These are small ways you can support our local businesses.

Tips From My Network:

1. From one of those friend-of-a-friend posts: do you have a bulk amount of alcohol prep pads for cleaning phone screens, etc? These items can be critical for diabetics or those with injectable needs, so if you have plenty of those on hand, see if you can assist someone who really needs them!

2. Everywhere you look, local food pantries are offering “no questions asked” assistance, and volunteer support groups are gathering to help with pick-ups, deliveries, and assistance – here’s just one of them.

3. “If you cancel a babysitter/daycare/cleaning person/landscaper/massage/any kind of service reliant on hourly or per visit income and are financially able, pay them anyway.” – secretlytropical replying to my Insta post.

4. “Tip your barista/server/whoever else extra $$!” – ronronthemom replying to my Insta post.

5. Swell founder and personal buddy, Nate Frazier, has released Connecting the Dots PDX, which gathers small businesses online who are in need of short term assistance, and similarly, I LOST MY THEATRE GIGS is a collaborative website listing where those in the theater industry submit their lost gigs/potential lost income so that people can donate to help keep them afloat (the entertainment industry has been hit hard – you’ve likely already seen a slew of concerts and shows coming up cancelled, over and over…). Jump in and support talented folk who have already invested so much time and heart into projects that are now dead in the water.

Do you get the feeling yet that we’re gonna be okay? We’re gonna be okay. But we’re also in this for the long haul, so pace yourself. Assemble, and take action. Find a need, and fill it. We’re in this together.

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Fantastic Portsmouth Ranch https://laurengoche.com/fantastic-portsmouth-ranch/ Thu, 12 Mar 2020 17:30:24 +0000 https://laurengoche.com/?p=23175 $400,000 9135 N Portsmouth Ave. Portland, OR 97203 Open House: Thurs. 3/12, 5-7pm Sat. 3/14, 12-2pm Sun. 3/15, 12-2pm Solid, stylin’, and super cool, this rad Portsmouth ranch was built during the decade of quality construction, and shows off all the best attributes of the era. Large windows and a brick-framed wood burning fireplace make […]

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$400,000

9135 N Portsmouth Ave. Portland, OR 97203

Open House:
Thurs. 3/12, 5-7pm
Sat. 3/14, 12-2pm
Sun. 3/15, 12-2pm

Click to view slideshow.

Solid, stylin’, and super cool, this rad Portsmouth ranch was built during the decade of quality construction, and shows off all the best attributes of the era. Large windows and a brick-framed wood burning fireplace make for a cozy living area. Roomy master bedroom with ensuite bathroom has a sliding door to the patio, and plenty of closet space. Downstairs, the partially finished basement with wood burning fireplace and bonus room offers exciting possibilities. Summer weather ready with air conditioning. Outside, the fully fenced backyard is private and awesome, with a VERY LARGE covered patio that is a party host’s fantasy. Out front, this ranch enjoys enhanced curb appeal throughout the seasons with established flowering fruit trees – peach, plum, Asian pear, apple, and bing cherry! Bike score of 85, and sandwiched between two popular parks, this fabulous home is well situated in a lovely neighborhood, with easy commute options, transit available, and surrounded by shopping opportunities in Kenton, St. Johns, and all of NoPo.

3 bed/2 bath
HES: 6
1,710 total square foot
Full set of listing photos

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Golden Piedmont Bungalow https://laurengoche.com/golden-piedmont-bungalow/ Thu, 12 Mar 2020 17:19:06 +0000 https://laurengoche.com/?p=23158 $515,000 6914 N Albina Ave. Portland, OR 97217 Open House: Thurs. 3/12, 5-7pm Sat. 3/14, 12-2pm Sun. 3/15, 12-2pm Hello, sunshine! This picturesque home with scads of curb appeal in the sweet Piedmont neighborhood is ready to make your buyer’s dream come true. Huge open windows and a classic bungalow layout bathes your living areas […]

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$515,000

6914 N Albina Ave. Portland, OR 97217

Open House:
Thurs. 3/12, 5-7pm
Sat. 3/14, 12-2pm
Sun. 3/15, 12-2pm

Click to view slideshow.

Hello, sunshine! This picturesque home with scads of curb appeal in the sweet Piedmont neighborhood is ready to make your buyer’s dream come true. Huge open windows and a classic bungalow layout bathes your living areas in light, while the hardwood floors warm up the space. Adorbs updated kitchen with plenty of counter space leads out to a sweet dining area with vintage built-in cabinets. The third bedroom is tucked away behind a secret doorway, which adds so much delightful quirk and character to this home! Bright and crisp vintage bath is beautifully tiled, and dual shower heads are a thoughtful touch. Downstairs, there’s a large living area, bonus room, and full bath – ideal for family room, rental, just a lil’ extra space. Out back, the fully fenced yard is beautifully manicured, with paved lounging space, raised beds for gardening, and lovely leafy shade from a stunning magnolia tree. Love living in a neighborly community near downtown Kenton, the beautiful Peninsula Park Rose Garden, transit, restaurants, and shopping!

3 bed/2 bath
HES: 6
2,306 total square foot
Full set of listing photos

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Rad Portsmouth Contemporary https://laurengoche.com/rad-portsmouth-contemporary/ Fri, 07 Feb 2020 20:52:43 +0000 https://laurengoche.com/?p=23138 $400,000 7812 N Clarendon Ave. Portland, OR 97203 So. Stinkin’. Cute. Inside and out, this bright and cheery 2 story contemporary home has plenty of personality and an amaaazing layout. Large windows let in loads of light, there’s new flooring throughout, and a smart open floor plan includes living room with cozy gas fireplace. All […]

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$400,000

7812 N Clarendon Ave. Portland, OR 97203

Click to view slideshow.

So. Stinkin’. Cute. Inside and out, this bright and cheery 2 story contemporary home has plenty of personality and an amaaazing layout. Large windows let in loads of light, there’s new flooring throughout, and a smart open floor plan includes living room with cozy gas fireplace. All three bedrooms are on the upper level. The spacious kitchen with fun eating counter overlooks a cute dining space, which leads out to the awesome backyard: large, fully fenced, private – there’s so much potential for gardening dreams and leisure out there. Not often seen in this neighborhood, an oversized 2-car garage hides a little secret – a badass bonus room that’s heated, wired for Internet, and hella insulated…so it would be just as happy to be a recording studio as it would an office space! Tucked back from the main thoroughfare of Lombard St. on a sweet suburban street, the location is super close to New Seasons, and ideal for commuting, access to shops, restaurants, and downtown St. Johns. Embrace the leafy, idilic neighborhood vibes of North Portland!

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Your First House Isn’t Your Forever House https://laurengoche.com/your-first-house-isnt-your-forever-house/ Fri, 24 Jan 2020 22:35:24 +0000 http://laurengoche.com/?p=22300 There’s a good reason why it’s called a “starter home”. It is because your first house isn’t your forever house. It allows you to learn and make mistakes, and realize that life changes. You change. Your city changes, your needs change.  And that is probably why, statistically, people nowadays stay in these “starter homes” for […]

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There’s a good reason why it’s called a “starter home”. It is because your first house isn’t your forever house. It allows you to learn and make mistakes, and realize that life changes. You change. Your city changes, your needs change. 

And that is probably why, statistically, people nowadays stay in these “starter homes” for roughly 5-10 years.

Our parents’ and grandparents’ generations lived in their homes for an average of 30-50 years. Now, jobs change faster, and way more often than they used to, there are international opportunities that families relocate for, there are accommodations made for parents’ aging in place – there are just so many variables leading towards not owning your first home for decades.

So, you might have to make some compromises on your first home.

And this is why it’s important you choose your realtor with care – I’m gonna encourage you to stare deep inside that crystal ball in anticipation of how your priorities may change when it comes to first home -vs- forever home.

For instance, I have seen all of these scenarios play out in real life:

  • You purchased a home based on commute – guess what? You got a surprise dream job! New commute!
  • A family member falls ill and you need to move closer to them, or travel to them daily.
  • Dad broke his hip, and needs in-home care. In your home care, that is.
  • You never wanted kids…until you did. When I was a baby I slept in a tiny dresser drawer on a boat, but eventually kids kinda outgrow dresser drawers and need their own space.
  • “I don’t have a dog, why do I need a backyard?” Uh oh, you fell in love with Charles, an energetic 100 pound mutt, up for rescue that you saw on Instagram…. and you don’t have a backyard.
  • You’ve never minded renting an apartment on a busy street, why would you mind owning a house on one (despite my firmly telling you “NO!”), and yeah, now it’s a big deal ‘cos you have kids and your partner is working night shift and can’t sleep through all the fucking traffic noises.
  • When you were a renter, layout didn’t really matter so much, so you thought it wouldn’t matter in the home you bought. Now, it really, really does.
  • You thought one bathroom would be fine, but then you met the love of your life and DEAR GOD do you not want to be pooping in the same bathroom as them for the rest of your life.
  • You love the cold, dark Portland winters…then accidentally fell in love with every plant that ever lived and suddenly there’s not enough natural light for all your plant babies.
  • You thought that a kitchen wasn’t that important, and then you took a cooking class in Vietnam and now you need a kitchen big enough to display that giant sticky rice steamer.
  • You fell in love with the cutest little 1912 Portland bungalow, but dear god, now all you want is the sweet, sweet expansive closet space that a ranch style house provides.

And so on, and so forth. You’re never gonna completely find perfection on your first home, and that’s okay.

After 5 or 10 years, you’ll have a really clear idea of where your priorities lie for your next/forever home. and then you’re gonna take all that experience and knowledge, and move on to your next house and and just fucking nail it.

Baby me, tucked away in a drawer on a boat

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Want to Buy a Home in Portland? Here’s How to Get a Mortgage If You’re Self-Employed https://laurengoche.com/want-to-buy-a-home-in-portland-heres-how-to-get-a-mortgage-if-youre-self-employed/ Mon, 30 Dec 2019 12:00:29 +0000 http://laurengoche.com/?p=22450 Buying a home as a self-employed professional can be a bit of a tricky combination for some. Let me start with a lil story: I was recently chatting with a dear friend here in Portland when she casually mentioned that she was on the verge of quitting her job and starting up an amazing small […]

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Buying a home as a self-employed professional can be a bit of a tricky combination for some.

Let me start with a lil story: I was recently chatting with a dear friend here in Portland when she casually mentioned that she was on the verge of quitting her job and starting up an amazing small business… and then she wanted to buy a house in Portland a month or two after that.

*record scratch*

I admittedly kinda freaked out on her. “If you quit your job and start a business, you won’t be able to get a home loan as a self-employed professional for a minimum of two years – but more likely, five – years. If you try to get a mortgage while you’re self-employed… You’d be screwed.”

My friend’s jaw dropped. “Wtf should I do, then?”

You buy a house in Portland right the fuck now, honey. You literally lose your opportunity to be a homeowner this year if you quit and strike out on your own. Suck it up for a few more months, and let’s find your home, NOW.”

As you can tell, I have opinions about how to go about being a business owner or an independent contractor and purchasing a house. I work with self-employed people all the time, and as a real estate agent, I’m self-employed myself! To be honest, working for myself has been the best decision I ever made. The freedom and creativity that being an entrepreneur allows is unparalleled. That being said, running your own business can have serious drawbacks, and buying a home as a self-employed person is one of them. But it is absolutely doable!

Step 1: Talk to your tax person

Buying a home while self-employed takes careful planning, some foresight, and a smart tax person. You gotta have that taxable income! And a fair amount of it.

If you haven’t filed your taxes for a few years or are behind on paying them, that is a whole other can of worms. Believe me, a bank won’t give you a self-employed person a home loan without you having paid your taxes.

Step 2: Talk to a lender

You usually need an average of at least two years of taxable income before a lender will even consider giving you a loan to buy a home. And this is why I freaked out at my friend when she was going to quit her job before she bought her first house.

We all know that those first few years of starting a business can be brutal. And even if you kill it that first year and rake in money, you still don’t have the two years of self-employed tax history that lenders insist on.

Step 3: Don’t write everything off

Your lender is going to be looking at TAXABLE income when they are qualifying you for a loan. The more you write off as expenses, the less your taxable income is. The problem is, when you become your own boss, you’re trying real hard to get every write-off possible, in order to lessen your tax liability. As a result, your income will seem very, very low. And when you’re trying to impress your lender with how much you’re earning, you need the opposite to happen. You need your adjusted gross income to be nice and high! See what Jen Leon,  one of my preferred lenders here in Portland, has to say on this:

“Love my self-employed clients, but I don’t love when they write off every donut purchase at Starbucks.”

Step 4: Pay your taxes

The only thing guaranteed is death and taxes, right? Well, the taxes part is definitely essential in getting a loan to buy a home! Every damned time you get paid for a job or by a client, set aside a percentage that you and your tax person have agreed on so when tax time comes around, you’re prepared!

And if you are behind in your taxes, set up a payment plan with the IRS. Because in a lot of cases, if you’ve jumped through all the other hoops, you can still buy a house if you owe, as long as you are currently on a payment plan! Here’s a lil secret: that is how I bought my first house!

Jen, again:

“The best way to know if you have viable income is to have a lender review your tax returns and assess where income can be bolstered up and used to qualify for a home loan. This is ESPECIALLY critical before YOU FILE your tax returns to the IRS in a new year! This way, the tax return can be modified and adjusted before the IRS gets it. It may require you pay more in taxes, but it can also mean homeownership.”

Do’s + Don’ts:

1. Hold off on any major purchases, like that new sofa, or trip to Costa Rica. Those can wait.

2. Talk with your lender and/or tax person/accountant BEFORE filing taxes for the year.

3. Advice from seasoned professionals is usually FREE. Don’t be afraid to check in with everyone for the best course of action.

Got questions? Reach out and I’ll talk you through it, and if it’s beyond my expertise as a real estate agent I’ll happily refer you to one of my Portland, OR home loan nerds who can tell you all about getting a mortgage while self-employed.

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Working from home

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The post Want to Buy a Home in Portland? Here’s How to Get a Mortgage If You’re Self-Employed appeared first on Lauren Goché.

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“I’m Thinking About Buying A House…” https://laurengoche.com/im-thinking-about-buying-house/ https://laurengoche.com/im-thinking-about-buying-house/#respond Fri, 27 Dec 2019 00:30:57 +0000 http://laurengoche.com/?p=22137 When I hear someone even whisper “I’m Thinking About Buying A House…” I want to look them straight in the eyes and say, “Hold up.” If I could get my potential buyers to take one – and only one – piece of advice when it comes to buying their first home, it is literally to […]

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When I hear someone even whisper “I’m Thinking About Buying A House…” I want to look them straight in the eyes and say, “Hold up.”

If I could get my potential buyers to take one – and only one – piece of advice when it comes to buying their first home, it is literally to contact one of my fantastic lenders the minute you think you want to buy a house.

This is a completely free, no obligation whatsoever move that will help you figure out how and when to take steps for your future. Even if you don’t plan on buying for years.

YEARS. I would so much rather everyone know exactly what it takes well ahead of time, instead of getting pre-approved just as you’re ready to pull the trigger…and learning that you should have done some things differently. It’ll save you so much heartbreak, seriously.

Here’s what one of my clients had to say about it:

“This is such good advice, as it just happened to us. We were holding off on getting pre-approved, ticking off our own checklist. Now, we find we were focused on all the wrong things, which has now delayed us for over a month. For example, I was worried about my credit score dropping when I applied, and refused to apply until it was higher – only to find out this wasn’t even an issue. Instead, it turns out I have to consolidate my 35 student loans (!), which is a 45 day process.”

A badass lender will anticipate these snags and help you work to resolve them ahead of time. They have the experience and foresight to clear a path from you to your new front door, removing all those unanticipated obstacles that occur in nearly every transaction.

A badass realtor will never let you step foot inside a house without first being pre-approved. They also have worked with countless Portland lenders, and know which ones are the very best. We hoard them like pirate’s booty.

So when I refer you to a lender, know that I’m doing so with your best interests in mind. One of my top shelf, tried-and-true lenders can and will make this process 100% easier on everyone involved. Believe me, having one of the very best lenders is key to success. Just trust me on this, okay? Okay.

Now, let’s find your house.

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