Homes With Acreage For Sale in SW Washington

If you are someone who prefers living close to the city for a reasonable commute but far enough away that you are able to enjoy a little peace and quiet, you may prefer a home that has a few acres. Southwest Washington offers a lot of beautiful scenery, is near the ocean, and big cities like Vancouver and Portland have a lot of opportunities for work, entertainment, and shopping. Here are a few homes for sale in Southwest Washington that are close to the city but enjoy the perks of having a bit of acreage.

Privacy and Convenience

Just 20 minutes from Portland, this home is the perfect mix of farm and craftsman style and is just as beautiful inside as it is on the outside. The property features 4 bedrooms, 4 baths, 5.27 acres, a detached garage, and a beautiful living space with pops of color to provide a cozy and bright feel. This home sits on a gorgeous piece of property with wonderful landscaping and multiple covered decks for relaxing or any type of entertaining.
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battle ground washington home for sale

Peaceful Setting

This secluded ranch-style home is located on 4+ acres and offers a clean, open layout throughout as well as a large workshop that has a 1 bedroom guest house. Start or end your day with a nice trail walk to the creek located on the property.
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washington property for sale

Brand New Craftsman

Just built in 2017, this home has the perfect touches throughout; reclaimed wooden beams, large windows, stone fireplace, vaulted covered patio, and so much more. All 5 bedrooms have walk-in closets, luxury finishes in the master bath, attached garage with a bathroom and workshop, everything you could ever want in your home. Enjoying quiet evenings around the fireplace, located inside or outside, will have you ending your days with a smile.
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craftsman home

Countryside Estate

This 10 acre equestrian estate will meet all of your needs, with a 22,000 square foot barn/arena, 10 large stalls, washroom, and much more for your horses. The main home is absolutely stunning, located just outside of Washougal and has just the touches to make you feel at home. The home features luxury bedrooms and bathrooms and a great living space, inside and out, for you and your family to enjoy time together while watching your horses in the pasture.
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washougal property for sale

Luxury Property

The architectural touches in this 4 bedroom home will be unlike any you have ever seen before. This 12,000 square foot residence has many luxurious upgrades, heated and lighted flooring throughout and with a touch of a button the skylights will open up to fill the home with the night sky, and a private library, to name a few. Enjoy your mornings and afternoons amongst the beautiful landscaped yards, pear trees, fire pit, and much more that this estate has to offer.
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vancouver washington home for sale


Wines for a Cause: Heather Martin Helps Classic Wines Auction Raise Millions for Charity Every Year

In her thirteen-year tenure at Classic Wines Auction, Heather Martin has helped Classic Wines reach $43 million in total fundraising, aiding an average of 82,000 children and families annually.
Written by Megan Oliver
Heather Martin’s Plan B was to go back to practicing law, so she took—and passed—the Oregon bar exam. Just in case. What she really wanted to do was to work for a cause. The smattering of pro bono cases she had worked during her commercial litigation career in Columbus had stirred in her a desire for a philanthropic position.
Martin and her husband were a decade into their careers and looking for a change. They talked about moving west to Seattle or Portland, where they could begin a new chapter in a milder climate. When her husband was offered a dream position in Portland, they made the move.
It’s tough for most people to imagine taking a bar exam, let alone as a backup plan, but it’s that tenacity which took the sharp, driven and quick-witted Martin from having little nonprofit experience at age 33 to getting hired as executive director of Classic Wines Auction just a year later—a few weeks before she found out she was pregnant with the first of the couple’s two sons.
“Life, right?” mused Martin. “It moves quickly.”
In her thirteen-year tenure at the organization, Martin has helped Classic Wines reach $43 million in total fundraising (two-thirds of which has gone directly to fourteen family services nonprofits), aiding an average of 82,000 children and families annually. She was also named Executive Director of the Year in 2016 by Portland Business Journal.
The Classic Wines Auction was originally a fundraiser started in 1982 for Metropolitan Family Services. Each auction was raising about $1 million by the time Martin started in 2004. That type of return from a single event was groundbreaking.
Consistently recognized as one of the top ten charity wine auctions in the country by Wine Spectator since 2001, Classic Wines spun off as its own 501(c)(3) nonprofit in 2004, under Martin’s leadership. Supporters recognized the potential to expand the fundraiser’s reach as its own entity—helping more underserved families in the Portland Metro area and southwest Washington.

Martin’s vision for growth has spawned many offshoot fundraisers that are produced by Classic Wines throughout the year. These curated wine events come with large overhead, even with what Martin said includes a “huge volume of donations made throughout the year for event spaces, people’s time, and wine and experience package donations.”
Still, the premiere events’ allocations constitute about 50 percent of the annual individual donations for each of Classic Wines’ five equal partner organizations—most of which are legacy partners, as the selection process is intensive. All partner nonprofits provide instrumental family services work, from after school programs to mentoring to support for families struggling with physical and mental health issues. It’s a rare nonprofit model, as Classic Wines only raises funds and does not implement programs.
“Our focus is growing the fundraising model, adding events and expanding the auction,” said Martin. “At the end of the day, it comes down to us making the most impact we can. But I think equally important is the broadened community exposure for the missions of these organizations.”
Over the years, Martin came to realize that the Classic Wines model worked best with nonprofits that are accustomed to soliciting significant private donations—in addition to having strong board support, solid financial practices, effective staff and successful event experience.
“They are better prepared for this type of fundraising than organizations which don’t typically operate in that realm,” said Martin. “Because these organizations have worked together with us and for a period, they trust each other. The equal split works in large part because they trust that everyone is working equally hard toward the goal.”
The four-person team at Classic Wines looks thoroughly at potential partners: What is the size of their budget and how do they manage their financials? Do they have a staff member who can spend time on the partnership without diluting what the organization is doing elsewhere?
“It’s a time commitment, so the organization needs to have at least three people on their development staff,” she explained. “Board members also need to be actively involved to champion the events and bring other influencers into the fold. We can do more together than any one organization alone.”
More than 700 people attend the March auction, a formal affair that brings in wine collectors and philanthropists from the region and beyond to enjoy drinks and a five-course, gourmet meal while bidding on silent and live auction packages. Tickets to the event cost four figures, and auction items range from cases of rare Bordeaux wines to rides in private jets to private dinners with famed winemakers. Around half of the wine comes from Oregon and Washington wineries.
Year-round preparations for the big night necessitate a great deal of help from the staff of the five beneficiaries, a throng of volunteers, co-chairs, committees and four wine ambassadors.
“My approach is creative but with a strong dose of reality,” said Martin, while admiring a display of her favorite varietal, rosé, at SE Wine Collective. “I read, I pay attention to the food and wine scene. With all our events, we try to stay on top of what is new and buzzworthy, then combine it with what is tried-and- true and beloved so people find value in attending and bidding on our curated auction packages. We want to create amazing experiences that people couldn’t necessarily just go out and purchase on their own.”
This innovative and experiential perspective is also what has taken Classic Wines from one auction to a series of successful events. Now, Classic Wines facilitates more than fifty intimate winemaker dinners in locations ranging from the Imperial to Cellar Z at Zupan’s. All winemaker dinners take place either in November, after harvest, or during the two weeks leading up to the March auction.
“The benefit dinners come at a more accessible price point than the auction,” she explained. “It offers the growing number of wine lovers and winemakers an opportunity to connect and engage with causes at whatever level they are comfortable with.”

Partner Organizations

Portland:
Metropolitan Family Service (MFS) – since 1982 New Avenues for Youth – since 2005
Friends of the Children – since 2006
Unity Center for Behavioral Health – since 2016
SW Washington:
YWCA of Clark County – since 2008
This article is also published in our flagship publication, Cascade Living Magazine.


Multilingual Brokers Offer Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty Competitive Advantage in Global Marketplace

With increased demand for real estate in the US and Oregon from foreign buyers, Cascade Sotheby International Realty enjoys a significant competitive advantage with a diverse team of multilingual brokers. A recent company audit of its agents reveals Cascade Sotheby’s multilingual brokers are fluent in numerous languages including Cantonese, Mandarin, Japanese, German, Russian, French, Spanish, Croatian, Swedish, and Brazilian Portuguese, to name just a few.
“Having so many multilingual agents with such diverse cultural backgrounds is of huge benefit to assisting the growing international interest in property here—and it really positions Cascade Sotheby’s as a leader in uniting foreign buyers with extraordinary residential real estate throughout Oregon and SW Washington,” says Michael Babbitt, managing principal broker, Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty, Portland Metro. “The global network of Sotheby’s International Realty enables us to stay ahead of buying trends and tap a huge international referral network.”
According to the National Association of Realtors, the gradually expanding US and global economies should keep foreign buyer demand at a robust level. A recent article in the Los Angeles Times states that foreigners bought 284,455 properties in the 12 months that ended March 31, about a third more than a year earlier. Dollar volume surged nearly 50% to $153 billion, also a record for the survey first taken in 2009.
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Cascade Sotheby’s broker Josephine Tang’s ‘Mother Tongue’ is Cantonese but she also speaks fluent Mandarin, Bahasa Indonesian and Malay, which have helped her serve a number of Asian clients. “I use WeChat to connect and communicate with my Asian referrals—we can both speak and share images of properties,” says Tang, who works out of the Cascade Sotheby’s Lake Oswego office. “Understanding Asian and American cultures and the languages spoken, and negotiation styles gives us such an advantage serving the growing Chinese market for US properties.”
Friederike Svensson, a Cascade Sotheby’s agent who moved to Oregon from Germany, has served numerous international real estate clients who work with German-based businesses in Portland including Daimler and Adidas. She says a number of German designers and engineers relocate in Oregon to work with the companies and participate in employee ‘swap’ programs.
“The Sotheby’s International Realty network and global brand recognition combined with a large community of multilingual brokers here really differentiates Cascade Sotheby’s,” says Svensson. “I definitely use my German and knowledge of cultural differences to work with an international clientele looking to relocate and invest in Oregon.”
Another significant differentiator for Cascade Sotheby’s brokers is Sotheby’s International Realty’s recent alliance with Chinese real estate site Juwai.com: the alliance enables the luxury real estate brand to generate Chinese buyer interest on one of the world’s most prominent real estate websites with over two million monthly visitors.
“The Sotheby’s International Realty collaboration with Juwai real estate site is a significant selling point for us in marketing properties abroad—every Sotheby’s listing will be featured on Juwai.com,” says Tang.
In addition, Cascade Sotheby’s recently appointed a new chief operating officer, Michael W. Kosmin, who has lived and worked in Asia for several years and since 2005 was responsible for property development projects in Asian markets. Before moving to Bend, Oregon three years ago, Kosmin lived in Indonesia where he was the managing director at Club Bali.
With deep experience in Asian real estate markets, Kosmin will lead the development of Cascade Sotheby’s Asian Desk catering to clients looking at real estate in the Pacific Northwest. Cascade Sotheby’s leverages Sotheby’s international offices, presence and prestige in China to be of service to that market.
“It is a huge advantage to Cascade Sotheby’s brokers and clients that company management has first-hand international work experience with an emphasis on serving international clientele,” says Tang.
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Cascade Sotheby’s affiliation with Sotheby’s International Realty offers a distinctive advantage to reach an affluent global audience. With over 20,000 sales associates in approximately 880 offices and 69 countries and territories, the Sotheby’s network provides a profound international reach to market properties in Oregon and SW Washington.
And according to the recent United Van Lines annual study, Oregon continues to be one of the ‘top moving destinations’ in the nation.
Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty franchise owner and CEO, Deb Tebbs, was the first on the West Coast to secure a Sotheby’s International Realty franchise to launch in Central Oregon in 2006. In 2015, she was awarded the franchise for Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty brokerages in Portland, Lake Oswego, SW Washington and the Oregon Coast. Portland is the last metro market in the nation for a Sotheby’s International Realty real estate presence.
The brokerage, which surpassed $1 billion in closed sales in 4th quarter of 2016, continues its drive in the metro markets building on these statistics:

  • 20% growth in market share in Portland metro and SW Washington from Q1 to Q2, 2017
  • Tripled sales volume in Portland Metro market from 2015 to 2016
  • Average price point for CSIR agents is 33% higher than other agents in Portland and SW Washington
  • Double the market share from its closest competitor in Central Oregon in total sales volume in the region for 2016
  • Grown from four offices in Central Oregon to 11 offices and 240 brokers throughout Oregon and SW Washington in just 12 months; signed 65 new brokers in the Portland/SW Washington markets in one year

If you’re interested in listing your property with CSIR or joining our talented, diverse team of brokers, contact one of our offices today!


Sotheby’s International Realty Announces Exclusive Alliance with Japan News Publication

Sotheby’s International Realty has partnered up exclusively with the Nikkei, the most influential news magazine in Japan, to showcase real estate listings through the end of 2017. This means that CSIR properties will be promoted through the Nikkei’s digital platform, which reaches over 29 million monthly readers. The Sotheby’s International Realty Brand is the first real estate company to present property listings outside of Japan to the readers of the Nikkei, giving interested Japanese buyers access to CSIR residential real estate offerings in Oregon and Washington as well as in nearly 70 other countries and territories.
The alliance with the Nikkei means that CSIR properties will be promoted in a number of ways on Nikkei’s online edition and property site including a translated and syndicated property listing page, custom-branded editorial content, and Sotheby’s banner advertising.
“The Sotheby’s International Realty brand is unrivaled in its reach to real estate intenders in the Asia Pacific region. In addition to our alliance with the Nikkei, the brand also has existing partnerships with Juwai, MyFun and WeChat, all of which offer unprecedented access to Asian consumers. The opportunities afforded to us with these key regional players is a testament to the strength and power of the Sotheby’s International Realty brand.” – Kevin Thompson, Chief Marketing Officer, Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC.
Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty, which has offices in Central Oregon, Portland, the Oregon Coast, and Southwest Washington, offers exclusive marketing, advertising, and referral services that are designed to attract well-qualified buyers to our property listings.
With almost 94% of all property searches originating in Japan are being searched internationally, the Sotheby’s International Realty brand is offering access to a virtually untapped global market by being the first real estate brand to showcase properties to readers of the Nikkei.
“With increased international interest in Pacific Northwest real estate markets, the Sotheby’s International Realty alliance with the Nikkei puts our listings in front of a wide audience of affluent Japanese consumers and increases our local company’s opportunity for global exposure—a huge imact for buyers, sellers, and our brokers,” says Deb Tebbs, founder and CEO, Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty.
Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty, which surpassed $1 billion in closed sales in 4th quarter of 2016, launched in Central Oregon in 2007 and recently opened brokerages in Portland Metro markets and Oregon Coast locations. Here are some recent statistics that supports the positive trend that CSIR is tracking:
– 20% growth in market share in Portland metro and SW Washington from Q1 to Q2, 2017

– Tripled sales volume in Portland Metro market from 2015 to 2016

– Average price point for CSIR agents is 33% higher than other agents in Portland and SW Washington
– Double the market share from its closest competitor in Central Oregon in total sales volume in the region for 2016
– Grown from four offices in Central Oregon to 11 offices and 240 brokers throughout Oregon and SW Washington in just 12 months; signed 65 new brokers in the Portland/SW Washington markets in one year
If you’re interested in discussing your real estate needs or are interested in joining the Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty team as a broker, contact one of our offices today.


Real Estate For Sale on the Washington Coast

If you love spending time in the outdoors, taking long walks on the beach, and living in the Northwest, then the Washington Coast could be just the place for you. With the incredible mountains and forests nearby, fishing, beach activities, a peaceful lifestyle, historic communities, and much more, you will never have a shortage of things to look forward to here.
If you’re in the market for real estate that can offer you an opportunity to enjoy everything the Washington Coast has, check out these great listings we currently have for sale. For more information about living in this beautiful area, visit our Washington Coast community page.

Custom Home

Located in the historic district of Oysterville, this beautiful custom home could be just the place you’ve been looking for on the Washington Coast. Features include an interior with beautiful wood floors and woodwork crafted from Douglas Fir, vaulted ceilings, family loft, and lots of natural light in each room. The exterior is finished with cedar sawn shakes that gives it the beach feel, a beautiful deck for entertaining, and excellent views of Willapa Bay. The property includes rights to an unbuildable oceanfront lot, meaning this property will always offer you beach views and your own access.
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Oceanfront Luxury

This absolutely stunning coastal home on 5 acres has a wide variety of luxurious features and finishes. A large stone fireplace is a beautiful focal point of the large great room that flows into the gourmet kitchen. Outside is a large deck that wraps around the back of the house, great for entertaining guests or quietly enjoying a cup of coffee with the ocean breeze.
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Oceanfront Lot

Enjoy unobstructed views of the Pacific Ocean from this lot in the secluded community of Ocean Park, perfect for building your dream home.
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Peaceful Living

Located in a private gated community, you can build the home you’ve dreamed about that’s close to fishing, the beach, and everything a quiet lifestyle on the Washington Coast offers.
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Coastal Ridge Development

Located close to the ocean, these 1.4 acre lots are surrounded by trees which offer privacy and a cozy feel for anyone who decides to build here. Sale includes 10 separate tax properties in a private, gated, luxury condo community.
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Luxury Living in SW Washington: The Parklands at Camas Meadows

Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty is at the forefront of featuring new developments that focus on communities that provide recreational-friendly, walkable neighborhoods that also feature a wide variety of amenities. One of those offerings is The Parklands at Camas Meadows, a thoughtfully-designed community in SW Washington which focuses on the ‘new urbanism’ that many homeowners are seeking today.
“The Parklands offers a stunning example of luxury dream home living combined with a focus on new urbanism, which offers more public spaces, community and environmental sustainability and healthier, active options for residents,” says Heather DeFord, broker at CSIR and listing agent for The Parklands. “Miles of walking trails, Lacamas Lake water activities, spectacular views, and a vibrant community full of restaurants and brewpubs are all planned for this little slice of heaven.”
With new restaurants and coffee shops, shopping and entertainment, an abundance of outdoor recreation, and a highly rated school district, the active city of Camas is a perfect location for The Parklands, and great place for families in all stages.
parklands wa golf
Site work on The Parklands is well underway, and at the time of this article’s publishing, over 50% of lot sites have been sold! This premier gated, golf community has been thoughtfully put together to meet the needs for each homeowner looking to build their custom, new home here.
Learn more about The Parklands at Camas Meadows on our community page.

The Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty Difference

Cascade Sotheby’s, which has expanded from Bend into SW Washington and the Portland metro area just two years ago, has become a leader in offering artful, environmentally-friendly living to the region. The Parklands is just one of many incredible communities that CSIR is focusing on in SW Washington, and as a testament to the growing popularity of new urban sites, the recently developed and listed luxury acreage at Cedar Creek in Ridgefield is completely sold out.
So whether you are in search of your dream home or a site to build one, looking to list your beautiful property for sale, or are interested in joining our team of incredible brokers, here are just a few of the things that Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty offers to make sure your experience is the best.

  • A focus on “the art of living” and an understanding of the importance of a sense of place
  • A dedication to representing the “gem” properties of every price range
  • The highest-quality marketing materials and brand assets for brokers
  • A dedicated local marketing team
  • Regional advertising partnerships
  • Cascade Living Magazine – the premier regional lifestyle magazine for the Pacific Northwest
  • Cascadesothebysrealty.com, which will launch a fully integrated digital platform from lead generation, social media management, CRM and a responsive website connecting to the Sotheby’s International Realty global network.
  • Knowledgeable brokers with unrivaled industry expertise
  • An acute understanding of the Pacific Northwest sense of place and how to communicate it to the world

Contact one of our offices today to learn even more!


Top Places to Live in Oregon

Oregon is a place that offers so many beautiful places to call home. You can live next to the Cascade Range in the high desert, along the coast where you’ll have miles of beach to stroll on, or in cities that invest in parks and open spaces for their residents to enjoy. Those who are active in the outdoors in Oregon will boast that they can go surfing, mountain biking, and snowboarding all in the same day. Those who love food and entertainment will find that Portland and many other cities take this very seriously, with quality restaurants, craft beer, and the local scene being the standard. So if you’re considering making the move to the Northwest, here are some of the top places to live in Oregon.

Central Oregon

For those who love the outdoors, Central Oregon is one of the best places to live. As one of the premier recreation destinations in the West, Central Oregon’s lakes, rivers, and single-track trails are just the beginning. Whether it’s a day cutting fresh tracks through thigh-deep powder at Mt. Bachelor or admiring an evening sunset from the back nine at Pronghorn’s Nicklaus Course, Central Oregon is the perfect outdoor playground for both visitors and residents. In addition to fairways and trails, Bend, Redmond, and Sisters lay fertile ground for starting and growing a business in a region that draws talent. Whatever your inspiration, the team at Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty’s flagship office will draw from their local expertise to find you the perfect property.
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bend oregon deschutes river

Farm, Ranch, & Vineyard

Land is the foundation for a sense of place. Its type determines the flow of towns, the taste of cuisine, and the boundaries of recreation. From southern Washington to southern Oregon, and from pristine coastline to eastern hills, our brokerage covers a range of nearly 100,000 square miles and much of that land is rural. Our Farm, Ranch, and Vineyard brokers are experts, as they, too, are ranchers, riders, farmers and vintners. Andy Warhol said that “land really is the best some of the most incredible farm, art.” We agree, and we are proud to say that in this realm, our brokers are lifelong connoisseurs. You will often find them outside the office–cultivating land and relationships while driving back roads, wrangling horses, or walking rows of grape vines. They are ready to match their extraordinary expertise with your vision.
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central oregon orchard farm

Oregon Coast

Once the nearly exclusive province of loggers and fishermen, the villages along the rugged and unspoiled Oregon Coast have blossomed into travel destinations with universal appeal. Dining, galleries and cultural activities complement the natural beauty that provides seemingly endless opportunities for outdoor recreation in old growth forests and along oceanfront bluffs. With offices in Cannon Beach, Gearhart, and Manzanita, Sotheby’s International Realty brokers can find the perfect home for anyone looking to add the seaside to their lifestyle.
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oregon coast

Portland Metro

City living is at its best in Portland, where you’ll find a quality of life that is unmatched in other major American cities. Portlanders are adept at creating spaces where business, culture and the great outdoors intersect. The Rose City has more than 10,000 acres of public parks and natural areas, giving residents ample opportunities to explore the environment without having to travel beyond the city limits. Bicycle friendliness is only matched by eco-friendliness. Each neighborhood’s charm is amplified by world-class eats, local microbreweries and coffeehouses.
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portland oregon marina

Lake Oswego

One of the oldest inhabited areas in Willamette Valley, Lake Oswego continues to be one of Oregon’s most desirable suburban cities to “live where you play.” With the eponymous lake at the center of life, Lake Oswego has maintained a reputation as one of the most coveted places in the Portland area for families to put down roots. The town boasts award-winning schools and parks against a backdrop steeped in history. From the historic Ironworks installation in the city park to its array of carefully-preserved Victorian homes and cottages, Lake Oswego exudes character and classic charm.
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lake oswego walking trail

Southwest Washington

Vancouver and the surrounding cities have emerged as much more than sleepy bedroom communities for their sought-after interstate sibling. Now hubs of music, culture, shopping and dining, each Southwest Washington enclave has an attractive identity of its own. From city to suburb, there is a town that will match your ideal mix of old-town charm and urban culture. As Washington’s oldest city, Vancouver has bridged the gap to modernity with its revitalized waterfront district and well-maintained, historic downtown. A strong commitment to schools and public infrastructure combined with attractive home prices make SW Washington a great buy for owners and investors alike.
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southwest washington homes


Smart Home Technology Ideas and Energy Solutions

Bend’s Home Systems Solutions owner Lawrence Fisher tells us about smart home technology, energy solutions, ideas and development, and how “The Jetsons”-style homes are now a reality for any home.
What are smart homes?
Smart homes are homes that incorporate advanced automation systems that control and monitor all the things that happen in and around the home—audio and visual entertainment, lighting, comfort, shading, surveillance and so on. It’s essentially taking a home and connecting all the systems into one easy-to-control platform, which can be accessed from a computer, tablet, smart phone or even just your voice. Although some homes may have “smart home” features, a truly smart home is one that is completely wired for full automation. Think of it like the Jetsons’ house, but much better!
Which aspects of smart home living are customers requesting most?
Most customers start with surround sound systems and whole-house music for their home. Home networking is also popular. Today we have so many devices that we depend on for work, play and family time. We’re using Skype, Netflix, Pandora, and a multitude of other Internet based apps— sometimes all at once. That puts a heavy burden on a network system and smart home technology can stitch it all together. Customers want a reliable and easy-to-use system so they can fully enjoy their home with ease. Third would be automated lighting and shading, which when they work together, are a nice addition to climate control inside a home.
smart home kitchen
How are smart home technologies changing the way people live?
Smart home technologies allow your home to work for you, adding simplicity and convenience. For instance, you can program a “good night” setting and with one click on your phone, you can turn off interior lighting, turn on exterior lighting, set the thermostat, lower the shades and lock the doors. A smart home can also help families be more energy efficient by closely monitoring energy use and allowing you to adjust accordingly.
How are smart home features integrated into the home aesthetically?
Well, in the past, high tech stuff wasn’t necessarily pretty—console TVs, CD racks and clunky speakers. Today products (such as speakers, flush mount TVs and projectors) are much nicer-looking, but can also be hidden away out of sight if the customer prefers. We’re really excited about hidden technologies such as invisible in-wall and in-ceiling speakers that perform beautifully. Control systems, such as wall- mounted touchpads, can also be sleek and low-profile to match the color or finish with the home style. In addition, we love working with custom woodworkers and cabinetmakers to integrate custom cabinetry into projects.
north rim automated home
What developments are happening in smart home technology that will be available on the market soon?
One thing we are seeing more of is voice control, where you can literally tell your house what to do. Amazon’s Alexa is just the start of this type of technology and voice control systems are getting better each year. We also now have Organic LED (OLED) televisions, which is the biggest advancement in TVs in the last decade. They hit on the big three tickets: amazing contrast, very thin depth and extreme energy efficiency. Lastly, there are some cool new surveillance technologies that include face recognition and 360-degree cameras that allow you to see so much more of your property.
This article is also published in Cascade Living Magazine. If you’re interested in looking at places for sale with smart home features around Central Oregon, Portland, or the Oregon Coast, get in touch with one of our brokers.


The Communities of Southwest Washington

Washington State is a land rich in early American history, bringing up images of pioneers, sea captains, and adventurous explorers. This inspiring history is especially evident in the Southwest corner, where rivers meet the ocean. The communities of Southwest Washington have kept their connection to the past by preserving landmarks and local parks, while still creating space for progress and modern life. The area has won many hearts, and it could easily become the home you’re looking for. In particular, here are several communities you should check out.
Featured Image – Vancouver, Washington

Battle Ground

With a population just under 20,000, Battle Ground, Washington is brimming with small town charm. While its name might sound fierce, Battle Ground has a peaceful atmosphere and idyllic scenery, cozied between the coastal and cascade ranges. It has numerous parks and easy access to the nearby Gifford Pinchot National Forest, so you can get fresh air and see wildlife without traveling far. If you love wine, you can also stop at one of the three wineries on your way home. Battle Ground is at the center of the county’s growing wine industry, so you’ll be able to try some of the region’s best wine.
Although relatively small, Battle Ground is far from boring. It has an active community with fun events, like the annual Harvest Days. During this celebration, you can watch a festive parade, sample amazing local wine and beer, and admire over 400 classic and custom cars in a Car Cruise. There’s a geocaching challenge, too, along with a talent show, a scooter competition, and a kickball tournament, giving your whole family something to enjoy. Community events like these help you to connect with people in the area, so you can quickly build a social circle even as a newcomer.
View of Columbia River from a Vancouver, Washington Condo
Vancouver Condo

Vancouver

Of course, no tour of Southwest Washington would be complete without Vancouver. Located in the southern curve of the Columbia River across from Portland, the city was originally a fur trading outpost named “Fort Vancouver,” after the sea captain George Vancouver. As a fort, Vancouver was a military stronghold and an important meeting point for trade. Ships came from London to trade supplies like blankets and tobacco for furs, which they then took to China and England. Later in the 19th century, as the area developed, the outpost also offered lumber, salmon and agricultural produce for trade.
Fur is no longer the foundation of Vancouver’s economy, but the shipyards have remained a vital part of the city’s life and history. In WWII, they produced ships 24/7 and brought the city around 36,000 new jobs, causing a huge population boom. The city has since overtaken surrounding towns and communities, turning them into vibrant urban neighborhoods with great restaurants, parks and local art.
Vancouver has become a city that’s full of possibility for anyone, not just soldiers and traders. It has interesting art galleries and historic landmarks like Pearson Field and Marshall House, as well as beautiful walking paths like the Waterfront Renaissance Trail. There’s enough to keep you busy in Vancouver, but you can also explore key treasures in the area, such as the Columbia River Gorge, the nearby Willamette Valley, and the mountains of the Coastal and Cascade ranges. Portland, Oregon is also right across the river, so you can take advantage of the tax-free shopping and cultural events there. Once just a trading post, Vancouver is now an ideal location to own a home.
Historical Camas, Washington Home
Historical Camas Home

Camas

Just east of Vancouver, Camas is close enough to the city to enjoy urban amenities, but far enough to form an independent, close-knit community. Camas started as a paper mill town, producing paper for the newspapers of Portland, but it now has a diverse economy with thriving businesses and technology companies. Downtown Camas has maintained its historical feel, though, with beautiful tree-lined streets and unique stores. With excellent schools, about 60 miles of trails, and a variety of recreational activities, it’s an especially great town to raise a family. You have the safety and friendliness of a smaller town, without missing out on the advantages of a city.
To read more about other areas around Southwest Washington and find some great homes for sale, check out our communities page.