Local agents say high real-estate prices not a “bubble”; COVID-19 Info; Public against Dash 2 amendment to Senate Bill 137s PPP loans

Local agents say high real-estate prices not a “bubble”

Buyers looking for “entry-level” houses in Florence know that inventory is low and demand is high. Prices, says Andy Johnson of Coldwell Banker, are up over 10 percent from last year. Florence follows a nationwide housing shortage trend, and Johnson says that locally we’re facing one of the biggest shortages since the 80s. But, he says, he doesn’t think there will be a sudden drop in prices: “I wouldn’t call it a bubble… though there will certainly be a leveling of prices at some point with more inventory. What Florence needs is apartments—multifamily infill to help with the rental shortage along with new entry level housing. 25 years ago in Coastal Highlands,” he says, “you could get an 1120 square foot house for $89.9. The same house today would cost 350-450 thousand.” This is now the going price of a “starter” home in Florence. But, Johnson says, it’s not a one-size fits all easy answer. A combination of land cost, inventory shortage and building costs all affect the price of housing. And all of that trickles down to the price of a home.

COVID-19 Info:

Lane County COVID-19 cases have increased by 35 yesterday which include 2 new cases for the Florence area.  It has been a week since any new cases have been seen in the 97439 zip code and the total is now at 246 cases.  The new daily average increased by 2% for a count of 31.71.

A Week after governor Kate Brown instituted a website that tracks Oregon county’s percentages of vaccinated individuals there are still only 5 counties that have achieved the 65% level needed to drop to the lowest risk level.  Dechutes and Lane counties are the closest of the remaining counties Lane is just under the 62 percentile with 61.9 and dechutes is at 64.8 %.

The Oregon health Authority is reporting lower weekly numbers of the coronavirus.  In its weekly report the number of new daily cases represents a 25% decrease from the previous week.  In addition hospital rates and deaths have also fallen.  Showing that the decreases are not from a lack of public participation, the state had an increase in tests of 4 % and positive test results fell to 5.4% from 6.4%.

Public against Dash 2 amendment to Senate Bill 137s PPP loans

The Oregon State Senate Committee on Finance and Revenue heard a round of negative public comments Tuesday on the “dash 2” amendment to Senate Bill 137. The bill amends the Paycheck Protection Program or PPP loans to eliminate tax exemption status for loans over $100,000. PPP Loans were part of a Small Business Administration (SBA) loan program that supports business, nonprofits and self-employed individuals during the pandemic. The loans are eligible for forgiveness. The dash 2 amendment would retroactively require businesses to pay taxes on portions of their loan over $100,000 from years 2020 to 2025. Ron Green, president of Oregon Pacific Bank says a small number of businesses would be affected in the Florence area. Green says “we made 291 PPP loans to Florence Businesses… I do know we have a handful of local businesses with PPP loans greater than 100,000, but it is not many.” Local loans totaled nearly $13.5 million for an average of $46,000 per loan amount.