Willamette Valley Home Buyers Guide

Stretching 150 miles from Portland to Eugene is Oregon’s famous Willamette Valley. In fact, the valley is so famous that 19th century emigrants journeyed there on the rugged Oregon Trail. The rich soil, abundant plant life and beautiful surroundings are what attracted people to the area over 150 years ago. 

Today, the Willamette Valley is known as “Oregon Wine Country” with its many vineyards and wineries. Bounded by the Cascade Mountains, Calapooya Mountains and the Oregon Coast Mountains, Willamette Valley is home to most of the residents of Oregon. If you’re interested in buying a home in the Willamette Valley, it’s important to learn about Oregon’s financing opportunities and the cities and surrounding areas. This will help you decide which is the best place for you to settle down. Just as the people along the Oregon Trail did, it’s time to dream big and search for your perfect place in the Willamette Valley! 

Oregon Has Many Home Financing Opportunities!

Have you thought about how you can purchase your new home in Oregon? If you’re able to pay for it in cash, that’s great! You may want to skim over this section if you don’t need home financing options. For those that would benefit from this information, let’s take a look at some Oregon home financing opportunities!

The state offers the Oregon Bond Loan program for low income home buyers. This program helps home buyers find the perfect home within their income bracket, and it assists with the home financing as well. However, to be eligible for this opportunity, you must have been a resident of Oregon for six months and expect to stay in Oregon indefinitely. 

The state also has the Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) organization that helps many home buyers every year. This organization offers various opportunities such as affordable mortgages and low fixed interest rates! If you’re eligible for their assistance, you’ll receive grants and reductions to help you purchase your Oregon home. 

Wait...we are not finished! Oregon also has the Down Payment Assistance program that offers grant money to home buyers to cover the down payment on a home! In fact, this program has given as much as $15,000 for a single down payment. In order to apply for this, you must complete the Home Ownership Education program. This is offered through the Oregon Home Ownership Center. They’ve helped many people to purchase their Oregon home!

Check Out the Cities in the Willamette Valley

It’s important to learn the area so you can choose the best location for your home. Ask yourself some of these questions: Do I prefer to live in the larger cities or the smaller cities? What services and amenities do I prefer be nearby? Do I prefer to live near the rugged countryside? Where is the closest supermarket? What is the main school for this city? Where’s the nearest hospital? 

The answers to these questions will help you decide on what area is best for you! Let’s take a look at the Willamette Valley’s main cities.

The main cities in the Willamette Valley are:

  • Portland - population 653,000. Multnomah County
  • Eugene - population 156,000. Lane County
  • Salem - population 170,000. Marion County
  • Hillsboro - population 92,000. Washington County 

Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon is the most populous city in the Willamette Valley AND the entire state of Oregon. With over 653,000 people, it’s full of opportunity and activities while very close to some of Oregon’s most beautiful sites. Portland marks the end of the Oregon Trail and is chock full of history! Sitting at the northern edge of the state, the city has numerous employment opportunities in fields such as technology, healthcare, industrial and more. It’s a fast growing city with housing prices rising to comparison with big cities such as Boston and Los Angeles. The average price for a three bedroom house in Portland, Oregon is $450,000. 

Eugene, Oregon

Eugene, Oregon is located in the center of the Willamette Valley and 50 miles east of the beautiful coastline. Known as the “Emerald City”, its serene greenery has mesmerized visitors and citizens for years. Economically, the main employment opportunities of the city are healthcare, education, wood manufacturing and recreational vehicle manufacturing. The average housing price for a three bedroom house in Eugene, Oregon is $300,000. 

Salem, Oregon

Salem, Oregon is the capital city of Oregon and is located about an hour south of Portland. From the city, you can view Mt. Hood and Mt. Jefferson on a daily basis! And on the clearest of days, you can see Mt. St. Helen standing vibrant and tall from the state of Washington! The area receives a lot of rainfall during the fall and winter months but has a dry season during the summer months. These details are important to know when purchasing a home! The main employer for Salem is the state of Oregon. The average housing price for a three bedroom house in Salem, Oregon is $250,000.

Hillsboro, Oregon

Hillsboro, Oregon is located just west of Portland in Washington County. The area is known as the “Silicon Forest” because it’s home to many technological companies such as Intel and Oracle. In fact, if you’re a professional in the technology field, the would be the perfect area in Oregon to relocate to! In addition to this, Hillsboro is a historically beautiful place to live. Several of its sites and structures are registered with the National Register of Historic Places. The average housing price for a three bedroom house in Hillsboro, Oregon is $350,000. 

The Willamette Valley covers a lot of rich soil in the heart of Oregon. From the north to the south, there’s plenty of beauty, historical sites, geographical sites, wineries, employment opportunities and more. Oregon is still, in many ways, the new frontier. People are hearing of the raw beauty, the rural countryside, the unique cities and are making the trek toward Oregon Country once again. We hope that this is a helpful guide to get you started on your exciting journey!

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