by John Wesley McPherson, Jr.
An adventurer at heart, I bought my floating home in 2013.
It was far from move-in ready, and having had several complete renovations of homes on land under my belt, I didn’t anticipate that doing the same work over water could be any more challenging than that.
But, when I started the real work of a full float replacement and a to-the-studs renovation with an addition, I quickly realized that I was alone in this adventure.
There simply were no reliable online resources for floating homeowners in Portland.
Through trial and error, during the last several years, I learned to navigate each new thing that came my way…replacing the float, floating home design factors and mechanics, floating home code compliance, the City of Portland permitting process for floating homes, the rules of our moorage, and the Oregon laws that protect floating home owners.
During all of this, I have gained an immense amount of really invaluable first-hand experience of what is required to take a floating fixer-upper and transform it into a home where I can sit back and enjoy the river views from the deck.
Because of my background in finance and business, I soon saw a pattern with both floating home owners who wanted to sell and potential buyers who were interested in buying – there was a true lack of any floating home market data for them to base decisions on. Pricing strategies for homes listed by real estate brokers without floating home expertise ranged from highly overpriced to steals, and buyers were oftentimes overpaying for homes because they were represented by brokers who weren’t familiar with the most important factors when valuing a floating home. A floating home seller or buyer should not lose equity nor overpay just because their broker is winging it with what it likely the largest asset in their portfolio.
With my 20 years of financial experience leading complex transactions – buying, selling, evaluating and negotiating millions of dollars every day through brokers – and my real estate experience selling homes on land and water, I started Portland FloatingHomes to deliver unparalleled floating home real estate expertise and data-driven pricing strategies to you.
But that didn’t seem like enough. I recognized that if an experienced home renovator had struggled and taken a few missteps along the way during floating home ownership, then others likely had done the same. Rather than keep all the things I had learned to myself, it became clear to me that I wanted to share them by creating a central resource for others who were interested in learning about floating homes, and owners who wanted to spend less time blazing a trail and more time enjoying their homes. For years, we have been conducting research, creating guides, and developing informational resources to help take all the guesswork and mystery out of the experience. We built PortlandFloatingHomes.com – a free online resource for you. Enjoy.