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Cannon Beach, Oregon

When William Clark of the Lewis and Clark Expedition came upon the area that is now Cannon Beach, he noted that it was "the grandest and most pleasing prospects which my eyes ever surveyed, in front of a boundless ocean."

Today, the landscape remains much as it was when Clark arrived in 1806. The beach is considered one of Oregon's most beautiful, and Cannon Beach itself is a charming seaside resort community, understated and artsy. It is a favorite weekend destination for Portland residents, and in the summer, Canadians come to vacation.

Locals enjoy fun restaurants, a great farmers' market, boutique shops and a dozen art galleries. The annual arts festival and the yearly sandcastle building contest bring out nearly everyone. The community playhouse is in a restored 1920s roller rink and receives rave reviews.

Neighborhoods are wooded with Cape Cods, cottages, Craftsmans and more.

Cost of Living

Cannon Beach is a charming coastal town with an overall cost of living 55% higher than the national average.

The median household income is $44,275.

Real Estate

The median home price is $625,650. This is a 20% increase over the previous year. For comparison, the national median home price is currently $380,000 (Realtor.com).

Estimates are that Cannon Beach real estate prices will increase by 7% over the next year.

The median rental price is $1,850 per month.


Cannon Beach has 1,500 residents and has grown by 40% during the last decade. Many residents winter in warmer, sunnier locales. Summer traffic is congested.

The median age is 50. For comparison, the median age of the U.S. population is 38.

Cannon Beach does not have a hospital, but Providence Seaside Hospital is eight miles away in Seaside.

The crime rate is below the national average.


Oregon has no sales tax, so Cannon Beach has no sales tax.

Oregon does not tax Social Security but it taxes income from retirement accounts (IRAs, 401(k)s) and pensions at rates between 4.75% to 9.9%. A 9% credit is available to people below a certain annual income ($22,000 to $45,000) and with less than $7,500 to $15,000 in annual Social Security income.

The average effective property tax rate (the annual tax payment as a percentage of median home value) in Cannon Beach is .85% The annual taxes on a $625,650 home are approximately $5,318.

Mortgages for Retirees

As people live longer and mortgage rates are at historic lows, more and more retired folks are considering obtaining a mortgage rather than paying cash for a new home. You are never "too old" to get a mortgage, thanks to the Equal Opportunity Credit Act, as long as you have the means to do so.

Having said that, retirees face some unique challenges when it comes to qualifying for a mortgage. Most mortgage lenders will look at the same criteria as they would for a young first time homebuyer, including your credit history, debt to income ratio and monthly income. The good news is that Social Security benefits and distributions from 401(k)s, IRAs, and other retirement accounts count as income.

However, because retirement accounts become depleted over time they have a defined expiration date. As a result, a mortgage lender will want to know that the distribution income will continue for at least three years after the date of the mortgage application.

It is also important to keep in mind that if your retirement accounts consist of stocks, bonds, or mutual funds or other "volitle" investments, mortgage lenders will only use 70% of the value in the retirement accounts to determine your mortgage qualifcation.

And while Social Security counts as income, if you are drawing on a family member’s record, such as survivor benefits or spousal benefits, then the income must be documented as payable for at least three years from the mortgage application date.

If you cannot qualify for a traditional mortgage, then a reverse mortgage might be an option. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac also have programs that can make home buying easier. Check with a reverse mortgage lender or these goverment agencies to see loans and programs available to you.



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