Life in Portland Blog

Interview With a Realtor: Liz Getty

Urban Nest Realty: Inspired by People

In this series of short articles, we ask our agents to talk about a recent event or client interaction that was particularly inspiring. Maybe the process went unusually smooth, maybe the obstacles to homeownership were significant or strange, maybe there was a teaching moment that's worth highlighting for future homeowners who can take away a great lesson from another's experience. In this series, our Realtors unpack one of the agency's most important mottos: Urban Nest is truly inspired by people -- here's what that looks like.

National Geographic Photographer Moves to Portland

“I had a client who was a National Geographic photographer, who had published a book on birds; he was also a referral from a friend of a friend. He had decided to move back to Portland after 12 years in Seattle, and had called me once before on a house in NE PDX that was of interest, but was gone before he was able to even see it.

“We met for the first time in front of what is now his home. It came on the market Sunday evening 9pm; by 12pm the next day, he had driven to Skyline and we met, hugged, and then entered the home for the first time. We walked the home and land for 1.5 hours because it was nearly a two-acre lot – one of the few rural reserves in Portland, and Multnomah County proper. 

“While we were there, 15 other folks came into the home and we could already feel the tension. Others liked this unique home as much as we did, and we knew that we would have to act quickly. We wrote and submitted a strong and reasonably escalated offer by 7pm that night, knowing that the sellers were not planning on reviewing offers for another full week.

“Over that week, we kept in constant communication with the agent, and yes, we wrote a letter talking about the porch, the land, the charm, the farm, and the restrictions that we were well aware of on this uniquely zoned piece of land. Rural Reserve land could not be developed, built up on, or vary much from its original footprint until 2060. (Our disclosures were 72 pages long – longer than many HOA reports!)

“Even though Gerrit had by this time found himself in remote Mexico where he only had intermittent access to a phone and Internet, we kept in constant communication with the sellers and listing agents. Which leads us back to how a rural reserve truly was the land and home (16 different apple tree varieties exist on the land) that was meant for Gerrit.

“When the week ended and they had reviewed 15 offers, including one significantly ($30,000) higher cash offer, the sellers still chose Gerrit, as his desire to play banjo on the back porch was worth more apparently than cash money.

“I tell clients every day that your house finds you – my job is to make sure when it is truly yours, that you actually get it (and sometimes even on the first try)!

“As many folks do, Gerrit ended up having to rent back the home to the sellers for 59 days. And because sometimes we go above and beyond simply being our clients’ Realtor, he ended up storing his entire life in my home for 45 days until he could occupy his new place in July. During that time, Gerrit traveled to Norway and India, while I did my best to keep my kids away from his Walrus tusk and Antelope skull!”

Learn more about Urban Nest Realtor Liz Getty here.

View all of Liz Getty's active listings now.