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Market Conditions in Hawaii : Real Estate Advice

  • All78
  • Local Info3
  • Home Buying38
  • Home Selling10
  • Market Conditions7

Activity 47
Sat Mar 24, 2012
Ron Thomas answered:
How areYOU going to know when the median price bottoms out?

A lot of very smart people are trying to predict that.
Even I cannot!

We won't know when that occurs, until about 6 months or a year later.

So, if you are waiting......
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0 votes 9 answers Share Flag
Sun Mar 31, 2013
Beth Thoma Robinson R(B) BIC answered:
I don't know what you think, Diana, but at many of the complexes it is already starting to happen. For example, my two most recent closings at Kolea had appraisals come in above the previously recorded sales. Appraisers are no longer checking "declining market", they now consider it a stable market. While we still have a trickle of distressed properties, there aren't enough of them to set the market anymore. Sellers can and are beginning to ask for a little more than the previous sales. ... more
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Sun Mar 25, 2012
Justin Ruzicka answered:
How do you define inexpensive?

I hope this helps
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Sun Jul 15, 2012
Nan Hutton answered:
If you are talking about the builing that is called 250 Ohua that building is fee simple. The only way Marriott can purchase that building is to buy up each unit individually one at a time. IF the building was leasehold then yes they would be able to buy up the leasehold interest of the building. If the lease was then coming up for renewal then Marriott could not renew if they wanted to do something else to that building than the current usage.

If you are speaking about another building please let me know which building you are speaking about.
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Thu Sep 2, 2010
Mike Gallagher answered:
Aloha Quinn:

My name is Mike Gallagher and I the Broker in Charge at Abe Lee Realty.

I would visit my website at for the latest sales information for Oahu.

There you will find the latest statistics for the Kapolei Area.

As for Koolina, the only way I would suggest investing there is if you are going to move into it as owner / occupant and hold it for the long term.

Rents are declining and there are many Distressed Properties currently in this area.

For more specific questions please contact me via phone at 808-384-9015 or

I wish you much Aloha,

Mike Gallagher, Broker in Charge, Abe Lee Realty

Ethics Complaints Review Committee Member, Honolulu Board of Realtors
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Mon Aug 16, 2010
Caroline M. Miller (R) answered:
Aloha Jacques.

The average price ranges from $252 to $1,523 based on current sold properties in Haleiwa. The price range also depends on where the property is situated such as near the mountain, ocean, flat lot or gentle slope. In addition, if any easements, encroachments, City & County Covenants/Restrictions exist on the land. A good realtor who is resourceful and represents you well should be able to provide this information for you.

Caroline Miller, RA, e-PRO
Prudential Locations LLC
Office: (808) 738-3133
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Wed Jun 16, 2010
Glen Mitchell answered: Stan keep in mind there are many places you can find rent index info besides here.

0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Wed Sep 4, 2013
Richard Sanderson answered:
Yes, but with limitations. The assessed value estimates market value using a mass-appraisal method (valuing a large number of properties using a large database of sales information) as of a specific date. For example many 2010 assessments have an effective date for valuation of Dec. 31, 2009, or Jan. 1, 2010. In order to value all taxable properties as of the effective date the local assessor would consider 12 to 18 months of sales data for the period before the effective date (say 12 months of sales ending Dec. 31, 2009, for 2010 assessments). An independent appraiser valuing your property probably will use the date of inspection as the effective date and use comparable sales during the last 90 days to esitmate market value. Because the market for real estate changes both the assessed value and market value estimated by the appraiser are good for only the effective date of value. ... more
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Wed Dec 16, 2009
. answered:
While past trends are important, current realities are even more important.

A couple of years ago when the real estate market was going nuts, the pool of "deals" was small. Thus, when you saw a smoking hot deal, you knew it and acted accordingly. Today, things have changed.

The key to today's market is that the pool of "deals" has increased so much that most buyers are not sure what is a deal and what is not. If you have been tracking a market for some time, you will know a deal when you see it. If you are unsure, you would be best to get the advice of a independent person who is not paid to sell you the home; as such, hire an appraiser and licensed home inspector. Both the appraiser and licensed home inspector will cost some money, but it will be the best money spent. If you trust your Realtor, you may want to ask them to refer your some names of appraisers and licensed home inspector.

So back to your question. The average increase is a very general way of looking at the market. Instead, you should consider specific areas of Hawaii that you want to purchase, and then sniff out the deals from there.

Where are you looking to specifically buy? Feel free to contact me at (808) 331-0585 to discuss more.

Kind Regards,
Andrew Meislin

Lauhala Mortgage
74-5620 Palani Court; Suite 208
Kailua Kona, HI 96740

Phone: (808) 331-0585
Fax: (808) 331-0583
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Mon Oct 10, 2011
Katie Minkus, R(B) answered:
Aloha, Kelly. Not to sound like a politician, but the answer depends on what you mean by "performing well." Every vacation property manager that I've ever spoken to in Hawaii has told me that it is impossible to make a "traditional" investment (ie: 10-20% down) and expect your vacation rental income to cover the rest of the mortgage, taxes, expenses and maintenance - and then, of course, you have to pay the property manager as well. The least expensive vacation rental manager I know of on the Big Island charges 28% of the rental income, and then has an ala carte menu for additional services such as paying your bills for you, etc.

In terms of our vacation rental/visitor market here in Hawaii, well, I can say that we've probably just had the worst 18 months in the past 50 years in terms of the numbers of visitors here in Hawaii, but given that the world and US economies have also seen the worst in 50 years these past 18 months, that shouldn't be surprising.

My recommendation that you come out to the Big Island and take a look around at what sort of properties are available to purchase for vacation rental in the different places on island - there are many, many different kinds and one is going to suit you better than another. Most "investors" find that at the end of the day, their property purchase in Hawaii is still one based on emotion - the emotion being as simple as "this is the property I like the most." If you plan to spend any time at all in your Hawaii investment property, you will want to choose something that both has the promise of some healthy rental income, as well as appeals to you on a personal level.

Best of luck to you - warm aloha, Katie Minkus, R(B). Broker-in-Charge, Big Island Sales. Hawaii Life Real Estate Services, LLC.
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Thu Dec 3, 2009
James Gordon ABR SFR SRS answered:
Crappie it is a fee for service site. There is nothing wrong with the site but you will be dealing with an individual owner --maybe-- when you call the listed number. They charge to put a property on the site so it should not be as bad as craigslist but use proper caution.

By the way there are no Crappie in the Pacific!
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Tue Apr 21, 2009
Katie Minkus, R(B) answered:
Aloha, Theron, great observations! You are right on the money, imho, except that at least out here on the Big Island, home prices have ALREADY fallen 30-50% in most areas and neighborhoods. Tourism has been crushed here since Aloha and ATA left last April/May, foreclosures have been on the rise for the past 12 months, and it's incredibly difficult for ANY borrower to get a loan right now. Additionally, we've been seelng lots of layoffs and our friends and 'ohana out of work. It's already "bad." But this shouldn't be a huge surprise, statistics show the height of the last market run up was July 2005. I've been watching prices and number of real estate transactions drop for the past 3.25 years now!

But we're still selling property because (lucky us!) Hawaii is still "paradise" and a "dream" for many, many people. Buyers with cash walk into our office and our computer screens daily because when they see those values at 50% of 3 years ago, or they see an actual cash flow positive property investment opportunity, they are excited about making their dreams come true. Every day more and more people retire or think about retiring in Hawaii. Every day another visitor falls in love with Hawaii and wants to own a second - or third - home. Hawaii is still desirable. And prices are down - way down - especially for cash buyers during a credit crunch. It's a great time to buy.

The market will turn around eventually - how do I know? They all - and always - do. So will it be worse next year? I guess it depends who you're talking to. If you're talking with a seller facing financial difficulty, well, that's one perspective. If you're talking to me, I'll tell you I believe next year is going to be a great year because many of the people who have been waiting on the sidelines to buy Hawaii for prices to come down - they'll start buying. In fact, some of them already have. After all, who can resist a 50% off sale??

Best of luck to you, Theron. Email me directly if I can be of assistance to you. It Takes Courage to Live on a Rock! Katie Minkus, R(B).
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0 votes 11 answers Share Flag
Wed Jun 20, 2012
Katie Minkus, R(B) answered:
Aloha, Alex... My first question to you would be why are you interested in selling right now? This is one of the worst environments for Sellers, with declining prices and too much competition giving downward price pressure - if you can afford to hang onto your property for the next 3-5 years, that would be my recommendation. If you are facing a financial crisis, or need to sell to get out from under a crushing mortgage, your list price will most likely depend on how long you have to wait until you must sell. Based purely on the numbers, this is what I see: There have been 5 sales of comparable sized lots and homes to your house (in TMK 3-1-1) since June, 2008, from $45k to $162k. Right now there are 11 "comparable" houses for sale from $69k to $210k. If the current trend continues, we could expect to sell through these houses in the next six months. Thus, if you need to sell yesterday (immediately) I recommend a list price under $50k. If you can wait three-six months, list from $50-$75k, if you can wait six months or more, list somewhere over $75k but under $162k, and at that point determining the "correct" price will depend on the condition of the house. You say it needs "a lot" of work, so you could expect your highest price point to be somewhere from $75-100k, in order to give buyers an incentive to purchase your home needing work, over those competitors that need less maintenance to bring it up to today's living standards.

Alex, we work as a team at Lava Rock Realty, LLC, representing buyers and sellers all over the Big Island. We do not allow Dual Agency (which most of our sellers appreciate as they're typically paying the commissions) and we have an incredible marketing program that sells our listings. So far this year we've sold 65% listings,
(representing 35% buyers) which means we know how to sell our listings in this market environment. I would be happy to share all of these things with you in further detail and answer any other questions you may have - please contact me directly at:, or 808-887-2500. Best of luck to you and warmest aloha. It Takes Courage to Live on a Rock! Katie Minkus, R(B).
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Mon Oct 13, 2008
Frank Diaz answered:
See this link or email me

It is definitely interesting.
0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Fri Oct 3, 2008
Katie Minkus, R(B) answered:
Hmmmm... well, I'm the Broker-in-Charge and co-owner of Lava Rock Realty located in Kamulea on the Big Island, so given that on the outer islands, a rail system is still just a fantasy... I have lived other places and traveled the world and my sense for real property values next to rail lines is this - those right NEXT to the rail, their property values suffer. Those neighborhoods whom the rail serves by a park-n-ride parking lot, those seem to get a boost in property values - easier to commute to town, but don't have to listen to the train in your backyard.

I think anything that improves mass transit in this state is progress, and helps us reduce our carbon footprint overall! As a frequent visitor to Oahu I personally would love to be able to take the train from the airport to my hotel room in Waikiki. A rail system to the airport from the downtown area is a certain hallmark for ALL great cities in the world - Honolulu just needs to accept their status as one of the great cities of the world and understand that with that honor comes the responsibility to offer mass and public transit that works, and gets visitors and commuters where they need to go quickly, efficiently at at a cost less than filling our SUV's with gas.

I have a vision that someday there will be a rail system from the Kona International Airport all the way up the Kohala "Gold" coast with stops at all the major resort areas... it would relieve our roads of the unnecessary burden of tourists "commuting" from the airport to their hotels and back 7-10 days later. Think of the natural resources we could save! What if the rail system ran on solar panels or wind power? Of course, I live along the Kohala "Gold" Coast and should my fantasy rail system ever be put in place, it will definitely improve MY property values.... ;)

It Takes Courage to Live on a Rock!!
Katie Minkus
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0 votes 3 answers Share Flag
Wed Nov 26, 2008
Alberta Keamo, Realtor answered:
Kapolei and Makakilo are unique areas. Although we have experienced a decline in pricing, for the most part the market condition is pretty strong with high numbers of closed sales within the last quarter. For a detailed report contact me and I will be happy to share it with you. I know of some really hot buys in these areas right now and would love to show them to you. Timing and having the right Realtor is everything in Real Estate. ... more
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Mon May 8, 2017
Patrick Lambert answered:
You must have been looking at my web page! Well, the reason some land is cheap is because there is so much of it in some areas. In HOVE, which is one of the largest subdivisions in the world there are over 400 available vacant lots for sale. So, you know that's not a typo I will repeat myself. There are over 400 available vacant lots in HOVE. Some of the lots available, like for $10,000 are so high up on the mountain it takes over 20 minutes from the main road. The higher up in the subdivision the cheaper the lot. It is a beautiful area and many of the higher ups still have an awesome view. If land in the Ka'u area is what you are looking for I promise you wont be disappointed if you call me for service. Send me an email of what your needs and desires are and we can take it from there. ... more
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Wed Feb 26, 2014
Greg Bloss answered:
In the last 16 months there has only been 3 land sales, ranging from $265K to $6.7K.
As for homes in HANALEI there has 5 five sales from $1.2 - $2.6M and there is currently 10 for sale from $1.1M to $5M.
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Wed Jul 1, 2009
Walt Berhalter answered:
Hi Michael,
Good question in these times. There are some basics that may help answer it though.
First: location.
This affects the supply / demand curve directly.
Next, and this is really the simple one, A deal is agreed offer between a willing buyer and a willing seller. In this case, that translates into making an offer and seeing where it goes. In these times you may be plesantly suprised.
Don't rule out asking for non-cash concessions or credit to costs at closing. We are seeing more of these across the board.

Happy house hunting.

Walt Berhalter, Sales Manager, Century 21 ALl Islands - Koloa
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Wed Nov 24, 2010
Brynn H. Allen answered:
Aloha Jim, We are definately in a Buyers Market. Select neighborhoods, such as Kahala, Portlock and Kailua are still holding value. The decline in the US dollar is attracting International Buyers and I believe we will see activity pick up in resort areas,such as Waikiki and Ko'Olina. My company, Prudential Locations, LLC, is the leader is Hawaii Market reporting. I can send you the latest Market report that we have on file. You can email me at and I will send you the report as an email attachment. Me ke aloha pumehana, Brynn ... more
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