Monday, October 18, 2010

Falling home prices give Bend new ranking

Bend is always making some sort of top 10 list for either the fastest appreciating or fastest depreciating home prices.

Well, now rates Bend in the top 10 for to retire because of the cratering home prices.

In an article titled "10 Great Places to Retire in the U.S.," the writer says "Bend rank among both the 'top 10 four-season towns' and 'top 10 mountain towns.'"

Well, I'm not sure about this "four-season" status, but we are experiencing a beautiful fall right now with leaves turning brilliant colors of red, yellow and amber.

Spring usually passes in a blink between winter and summer and it's not worth planting tomatoes until June 1.

Cold temperatures are common from October into May, be we can have surprisingly mild Januarys. Still, last December we had temps as low as 17 degrees below zero, which was the coldest we've seen in our 26 years here. It does snow in Bend, but, a white Christmas is the exception and not the rule. We've had only one real snowy winter and that was 18 years ago.

Hot summer days are usually confined to July and August and the temperature rarely breaks 100 degrees.

Because we are a mountain/high desert town, cool nights are standard throughout the year. In fact, we can have 50-degree temperature swings in a single day.

But, the air is usually crisp and clean, except for those rare inversions that trap smoke from wood stoves in winter or when fire season blazes away in August.

The weather here does have great variety, though, sometimes all in one day.

The story also says Bend attracts "active retirees" and that is certainly true because of the skiing and hiking opportunities, not to mention fishing and hunting.

But, the real reason takes notice of Bend is the falling home prices. The median price dropped from around $400,000 in 2006 to around $200,000 today.

But, with stories like this one from it won't take long for Bend to attract more retirees, which will eventually push up the price of homes and then make Bend unaffordable and unattractive once again.

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