The Organization That Helped Me Gain Confidence As A Realtor

I want to introduce you to an organization that helped me so much in my early years as a real estate agent. I’ve been a member of this organization for years, and during that time have been encouraged by other members to take on formative responsibilities, develop my skills in public speaking and more, and through their belief in my ability, I gained confidence I never knew I needed. The difference this has made in my business and life is remarkable and I have the Women in Insurance and Financial Services (WIFS) to thank.

For more than 80 years, WIFS has been committed to attracting, developing and advancing women in the insurance and financial services profession. A non-profit organization founded in 1936 WIFS is one of the only organizations in the industry to focus exclusively on female professionals.

They offer events, masterminds and countless learning opportunities where professionals get together to learn from the expertise of others. While this number is thankfully growing, women only represent 15% of professionals in financial services and I loved that WIFS was seeking to close that gap.

If you’re a new agent, lender or any woman working in financial services, I could not recommend WIFS enough for the foundation they provided me to grow a successful real estate business in Portland.

If this sounds like the support you’re looking for, you can check WIFS out here, head to their event schedule here, and read up on membership here. And please, if you have any questions, I’d be happy to provide you a firsthand account of my experience so please, ask away!

Welcome Nesika Illahee—PDX’s 1st Affordable Housing Project Designed for Native Americans

If you’re a resident of NE Portland you may have noticed a bright yellow apartment complex has sprung up on NE 42nd. In an unprecedented move, the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians (Siletz), Community Development Partners, the Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA), and the Native American Rehabilitation Association of the Northwest (NARA NW) has collaborated to construct a 53,000 sq ft. affordable housing complex in Portland’s Cully Neighborhood.

Nesika Illahee—Cherokee for “our place” boasts 59 units, from studios to three-bedroom apartments, laundry facilities on each floor and spaces for residents to gather and host events. Inside, and out, you’ll find the walls adorned with murals and artwork. With the help of the Native American Rehabilitation Association of the Northwest (NARA), Nesika Illahee will have onsite certified drug and alcohol counselors to support tenants in recovery. NARA will also provide access for children, youth, adults, and elders to a slate of services including primary and specialty care providers, women’s health support, a diabetes program, as well as dental and mental health services.

Nesika Illahee is truly the first complex of its’ kind, having been the first to receive the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Indian Housing Block Grant to build housing in an urban environment, rather than on reservation land. Tenant preference will go first to applicants whose head of household is an enrolled member of the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians or the household includes a minor or dependent child who is an enrolled Siletz tribal member. Second preference goes to households with at least one member enrolled in a federally recognized tribe, Alaska Natives or tribes recognized by states and included in the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act.

Review full tenant selection criteria here.

“This is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the city of Portland and it’s also one of the most gentrified, and a lot of people, lower-income people and people of color, are being displaced, so this new development really puts a marker down that the community wants to remain a diverse community,” said Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler regarding the project.

Nesika Illahee’s partnership and funding model is revolutionary. It seeks to pay the way for many more projects like it, in Portland and beyond.

To learn more about this complex and associated collaborators, head here and here. 

~Marissa Sainz

Beautiful Gated Townhouse for 1st Time Home Buyers

Adam and Mikey were first-time buyers ready to shift into investing,  instead of spending money on rent every month.  They contacted Living Room and were passed to me as a resident condo expert.  We toured a number of condos around town but as so often happens, they kept coming back to this one, again and again, deliberating whether it suited their needs. In the end, this private townhouse won them over with the right price,  2 bedrooms and small private outdoor space.  We were able to negotiate their closing costs to be paid by the seller along with a long closing so the current tenants could move out.

Built-in 2008, this gated townhouse features beautiful hardwood floors and vaulted ceilings, tile and granite countertops and a fenced deck.  Easy access to East Portland amenities, MAX and freeway access, bike paths, shopping, dining and parks made this the perfect transition for these first time home buyers.


A big congratulations to Adam and Mikey on their gorgeous new home!

Listed by Sam Crawford • Keller Williams-PDX Central

Listed by Emily Hetrick • Keller Williams-PDX Central

Stunning Condo at the Door of the Pearl District

Serena got in touch with me as an out of town agent through my website. As a remote buyer, she was looking for virtual support, great communication and lots of info on the local market and Portland’s neighborhoods. After a number of virtual video walk-throughs in a few condos across the city, she settled on an absolute stunner. This 1,898 square foot condo boasted an additional 1000 square foot outdoor space and incomparable views of the city, making it an easy choice for Serena.


A quiet home in the North Park Loft building meant the Pearl and downtown were right at her doorstep.


You could see the attention to detail and emphasis on quality in the custom floor-to-ceiling windows featuring city & mountain views from every room.

Through great communication and a little time hitting the pavement, I think it’s easy to see that Serena landed herself with a remarkable new home. Congratulations Serena!

Listing Courtesy of: The Agency, Inc

Closed! Classic Bungalow Undergoes Cosmetic Updates and Goes Pending in Four Days!

We closed! Out of state sellers, Deitrich and Shauna, had a lot of updating to undertake in order to get their charming NE bungalow ready to sell. But we got it done in a flash and ended up with multiple offers in just 4 days on market! Original wood floors and classic built-ins complimented a newly updated kitchen, new carpets, fresh interior paint, landscaping, and staging. We saw a ton of traffic right away and it was no surprise. This bungalow was truly special with it’s proximity to Alberta and Dekum St. and a lovely, large fenced backyard with raised beds ready for planting—ready for a quickly approaching spring!

A huge thank you to Deitrich and Shauna for trusting me throughout the process and from states away! Scroll down to see a few snapshots of this great classic home.

Acre: 0.11
SqFt: 1546

Beds: 4
Baths: 2