Why Many Oregonians are Jumping the River to Clark County.

As Realtors, we help a lot of people move from one location to another. Occasionally, we’ll help a family move from the Vancouver area into Portland, but most of the time it’s the other way around. It seems like a lot of Oregonians are moving to Clark County lately. Vancouver is much smaller than Portland, and doesn’t have the big city amenities Portland has to offer, so you may be wondering: Why are so many Oregonians choosing to move to Clark County?

No Income Tax

Currently only seven states in the U.S. do not charge an income tax, and Washington is one of them. If you’re tired of forking over 5%-10% of your paycheck to the state, then you may want to consider moving to Washington. Consider this: if you make $100,000 per year, that equates to nearly $10,000 withheld from your check. For many people, that’s the cost of a dream vacation or new motorcycle! While there is a sales tax in Washington, you may find yourself paying less in taxes overall if you make the move.

Better Schools

In a general comparison Vancouver Public Schools rank better than Portland Public Schools, at least in some key areas. For example, Portland area High Schools average around a 74% graduation rate, compared to Vancouver where approximately 80% percent of High School students successfully receive their diploma.  However, the student to teacher ratio is very close: 18-1 in Portland, and 17-1 in Vancouver. As for spending per student, Washington offers nearly $300 more for their students than Oregon, which spends an average of $10,442 per student. The Washington student budget provides $10,735 per student.

Lower Home Prices

There is no question about it, if you drive a half hour north from Portland to Vancouver, the median home price drops substantially. According to Realtor.com the median home price of recently closed homes in Portland is $399,000. In Vancouver the median home price of closed sales is $319,000. The average price per square foot is an obvious indication that your money is going to go a lot further in Clark County: the price per square foot is $185, versus $242 in Portland.

Lower Population

Portland is a relatively safe city compared to many other cities of similar size across the nation, but it still has a fair amount of crime. Higher populations generally mean higher crime, and this can be true when comparing Portland and Vancouver. According to City-data.com, Vancouver has a crime index of 290 compared to 409 in Portland. A census estimated the population of the city of Portland to be around 639,863, while the city of Vancouver tops out at around 174,836. A much smaller city also means less competition for parking, recreation, transportation, and other commodities.


From better school funding to cheaper home prices, Vancouver has a lot to offer. It’s loaded with recreational opportunities, and has a growing job market too. If you’re thinking of moving to Vancouver, let us help you find the perfect home!