Renovation bids sink lower

So some building owners are investing in small projects while waiting to sell when the economy rebounds. 

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Building owners with money on hand are looking to renovation work with a newfound sense of enthusiasm, and a getting great deals.

When Scott Conway, president of First Cascade Corporation, saw the bid results for the renovation of the Chehalem Cultural Center in Newberg four months ago, he noticed something odd that he hadn’t seen in 25 years: The two lowest bids came in at the exact same dollar amount.

More importantly, that amount was well below what he would consider the market cost of the project. But he wasn’t surprised. He and other building professionals consider it a sign of the times, as firms balance their desire to stay in business with their desire to stay competitive.

The beneficiaries of lower bids are building owners, who are seeking more renovation work for less money. The recession may be slowing the sale of new and old buildings, but construction costs have dropped by nearly 11 percent since the beginning of the year, according to the Turner Building Index.

Read the full story in the Statesman Journal.

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