More Choices for Oahu Homebuyers as Summer Inventory Levels Rise

After 13 consecutive months of rising prices, the median sales price of a single-family home dropped for the first time. The 1.6% year-over-year decline is only the fourth time in more than three years single-family home prices have taken a break from its otherwise upward climb.

Remember: The valuation of any property type, whether condo, single-family home, vacant land, apartment, or commercial property can vary depending on location, neighborhood, size, condition, age, features, amenities, upgrades and much more. For specifics regarding your particular property, contact me for a personal, customized home valuation.


After 13 consecutive months of rising prices, the median sales price of a single-family home dropped for the first time. The 1.6% year-over-year decline is only the fourth time in more than three years single-family home prices have taken a break from its otherwise upward climb.
Statistics from June, released this week by the Honolulu Board of Realtors, also show a slight slowdown in the sales of single-family homes. Yet, condominium sales volume, as well as median sales price are both up last month, when compared to June 2017.
“Sellers are still enjoying today’s market,” says Kalama Kim, broker in charge at Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties. “For those properties that sold last month and prior, sellers are accepting offers within three weeks from listing their property.”
All three inventory benchmarks — new listings, months of inventory remaining, and total active listings — show an increase last month when compared to June 2017. In fact, the number of active listings hit a two-year high in June for both single-family and condos.
The most dramatic surge in inventory are in single-family homes priced between $650,000 and $1.9 million.
“The increase in active inventory and new listings over the past few months is needed relief for buyers,” Kim adds. “Buyers may finally have multiple choices without having to compete with multiple buyers for the properties they are interested in buying. If the trend continues, the balance between supply and demand could benefit buyers and they may gain some of the negotiating leverage.”
Kim goes on to explain that despite the decline in pending sales, housing demand remains strong, as illustrated by heavy buyer traffic at open houses.
“Even though interest rates continue to creep up, current rates are still considered low, historically. For example, at the peak of the last market surge, interest rates for a 30-year mortgage were in the 6% range, compared to the 4.5% to 5% range we see today.”
That said, Kim points out how increases in interest rates can significantly affect how much a buyer can afford to spend — their purchase price and their monthly payment.
“Some buyers may be desperately trying to find the right home before interest rates rise higher and price them out of the market for the type of home they prefer,” Kim says.
With a few more months of summer to go, there are positive aspects for both buyers and sellers.
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, June 2018
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, June 2018 | Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

While the year-over-year tally is very close, the number of single-family homes that sold in June, as compared with homes sold in the month of June 2017, is slightly down. Sales volume last month was 365 homes sold, compared to 370 a year ago.
Condo sales volume improved from the HBR stats from a year ago — closing on 547 condominiums in June, up from 2.1% the same month last year when 536 units closed.
At the half-year point, condo sales increased 6.5% (based on the number of closing for the first six months), while single-family sales volume decreased 1.6%.
The affordability of Oahu condominiums may explain the unwavering appeal of this market segment.
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, June 2018
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, June 2018 | Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

The median price of a single-family home fell 1.6% in June, compared to the June 2017, which was the highest one-month MSP on record at $795,000. The MSP last month, $782,388, is the fourth highest, to date. ($786,250 in August 2017 and $790,000 in April 2018)
Yet, year-to-date tallies show the six-month MSP ahead of 2017 figures by 3.9% — from $750,000 at the six-month point in 2017 to $779,000 at the end of the second quarter 2018.
Condo prices were up again in June as well, marking the 12th consecutive month of price increases. The MSP of a condo ticked up 5%, from $400,000 a year ago to $420,000 in the last month. Year-to-date, the price of a condo unit is up 6.5%.
HOT MARKETS!
In June, the median number of days a home was on the market before an accepted contract was signed and escrow opened was up slightly from 12 days for a single-family home in June 2017 to 16 days; and from 13 days on the market for a condo in June 2017 to 18. But the most competitive markets are still sizzling, as we call out the island’s hottest markets — those that sold in 15 days or less, during the first five months of 2018.
Single-family homes selling in:
Ewa Plain, 13 days on the market
Kapahulu – Diamond Head, 13 days on the market
Makakilo, 13 days on the market
Mililani, 12 days on the market
Moanalua – Salt Lake, 8 days on the market
Pearl City – Aiea, 14 days on the market
Wahiawa, 12 days on the market
Condos selling in:
Aina Haina – Kuliouou, 8 days on the market
Ewa Plain, 12 days on the market
Kaneohe, 11 days on the market
Makakilo, 14 days on the market
Mililani, 11 days on the market
Moanalua – Salt Lake, 11 days on the market
North Shore, 14 days on the market
Pearl City – Aiea, 11 days on the market
Wahiawa, 10 days on the market
Waipahu, 11 days on the market

Oahu real estate prices continue to climb in May

Single-family homes are going into escrow after a median of 14 days on the market, according to the latest stats compiled by the Honolulu Board of Realtors in May.

Single-family homes are going into escrow after a median of 14 days on the market, according to the latest stats compiled by the Honolulu Board of Realtors in May. Demand continues to be strong, pushing median sales prices up 4.4% — to $778,000 last month, up year-over-year from $745,000. Indicating it remains a seller’s market here on Oahu.
The number of active listings in single-family homes and condominiums was up in May, offering buyers more homes to choose from. However, it is noteworthy that the rate of sales and months of inventory remaining still indicate inventory levels are extremely low, despite the overall number of listings being slightly higher. Additionally, new listings inventory jumped 13.4% in the single-family home segment in May — from 461 new listings in May 2017 to 523 new listings last month.
While an uptick in inventory is encouraging news for buyers, there should be clear motivation to act soon, as the clock is ticking on rising mortgage interest rates. When rates go up, buying power — the maximum loan amount available — goes down. As little as a 1% rate increase may be enough to take some buyers completely out of the market. While the increase has been anticipated for many months, it appears to be finally happening.
As a result, entry-level buyers should not hesitate to consult with a loan officer to pre-qualify and establish an affordable monthly payment under current rates.
“The first order of business for first-time home buyers is to spend time with their agent pondering all their wants and needs,” says Kalama Kim, principal broker at Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties. “Too often, buyers will eliminate options which may be the best for them.”
For example, there are varying loan products available, some offering lower down-payment requirements to those who qualify.
“There are still a few zero-down-payment loans available, including VA, USDA and other options for qualified individuals and property types,” Kim says.
“A starter-home buyer should be sure they have the right team in place to help them buy the right home at a fair price. In addition to finding a service-oriented Realtor®, your team will include an adept mortgage loan officer and inspectors who are usually recommended by the Realtor®. Having a team in place from the beginning of the process will help to create a smooth and successful transaction.”

Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, May 2018
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, May 2018 | Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

We track sales volume to follow year-over-year increases or decreases. The statistic basically tracks the rate at which homes are selling. Analysts use a combination of stats, including sales volume, which helps to show where we are in the real estate cycle, i.e. Is the market heading up or down? Is it a buyer’s market or a seller’s market? At Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties, we think it’s important to keep these crucial statistics in mind when making decisions.
May sales volume slowed slightly — down 8.3% in single-family and condos, though homes closed in May likely opened escrow in April and may not accurately reflect any uptick related to summer sales, which tend to be stronger. However, after the first five months of 2018, both segments are nearly even with previous year-to-date figures — the volume of single-family homes sales are down 1.7% while condos are up 1.1%.
In the most recent 12 months, sales volume has been down three times in the single-family segment, and five times for condos — the highest drop was 12.2% in condo sales in December 2017.
Pending sales are also down in both categories.
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, May 2018
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, May 2018 | Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

The median sales price of a single-family home gained 4.4% in May — from $745,000 in May 2017 to $778,000 last month. This is the 13th consecutive month of price increases for single-family homes.
Condo prices were also on the rise — up 5.8% from $406,500 in May 2017 to $430,000 last month. This represents the 11th consecutive month of price increases in the condominium segment.
HOT MARKETS!
For May, the median number of days on the market before a home sold was 14 days for single-family homes, and 19 for condominiums. This month’s hot markets are those neighborhoods that sold in less time than that in May. If you’re looking for a quick sale, take a look at this impressive list.
Single-family homes selling in:
Kaneohe 12 days on the market
Makiki – Moiliili 10 days on the market
Mililani 9 days on the market
Moanalua – Salt Lake 12 days on the market
Pearl City – Aiea 13 days on the market
Waialae – Kahala 12 days on the market
Condos selling in:
Ewa Plain 12 days on the market
Hawaii Kai 12 days on the market
Kaneohe 9 days on the market
Makaha – Nanakuli 16 days on the market
Makakilo 8 days on the market
Makiki – Moiliili 15 days on the market
Mililani 2 days on the market
North Shore 9 days on the market
Pearl City – Aiea 8 days on the market
Wahiawa 12 days on the market
Waialae – Kahala 7 days on the market
Waipahu 16 days on the market

April marks another record high for Oahu single-family home prices

Despite a rise in mortgage interest rates and an uptick in new listings, the median sales price of a single-family home was up 10.9% last month, compared to April 2017.

Remember: The valuation of any property type, whether condo, single-family home, vacant land, apartment, or commercial property can vary depending on location, neighborhood, size, condition, age, features, amenities, upgrades and much more. For specifics regarding your particular property, contact me for a personal, customized home valuation.


Despite a rise in mortgage interest rates and an uptick in new listings, the median sales price of a single-family home was up 10.9% last month, compared to April 2017.
“Mortgage interest rates started rising back in November, yet sales volume is still at the same levels they were prior to the increase in rates,” says Kalama Kim, Principal Broker at Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties. “The median sales price has been rising so we have not seen a significant effect on prices as of yet either.”
The number of new listings was up 13.2% for single-family homes and 11.3 for condos. The 506 new single-family listings last month marked a two-year high. The overall number of active condo listings, at 2045, is also a two-year high. The inventory upswing comes just in time for the high demand of the summer, which may slightly ease competition among buyers. However, months of inventory remaining hit two-year lows in December 2017 (2.3 months) for condos and January (1.9 months) for SF homes, but is still severely depleted: 2.8 months and 2.3 months, respectively for condos and SF homes.
In some markets, record high prices might motivate owners to cash out, but there is no indication that is currently the case on Oahu.
“In past cycles, we have seen rising prices motivate sellers to cash-out and list their homes,” says Kim. “In this market, we have yet to see that happen even though prices hit record highs in the last few years. The lack of inventory may be keeping owners in place because they have nowhere to move once they sell.”
For those who do want to cash out possibly at the market’s peak, Kim has this advice for buyers lucky enough to receive more than one offer on their home.
“When reviewing offers in a competitive market like the one we are in today, the three most important terms of an offer are price, cash down, and the willingness to pay over the appraisal value,” Kim says. “This allows the seller to get what the market will bear even if an appraisal report says otherwise.”
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, April 2018
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, April 2018 |
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

The number of closed sales increased in both categories, as compared with April 2017. Single-family home sales volume was up 3.2%, from 280 a year ago to 289 last month. Condo sales volume spiked 12.6%, up from 486 units closed in April 2017 to 547 last month — making this the second highest in two years — the highest being in August 2017 with 575 closings.
Based on the number of signed contracts not yet closed, pending sales are on the rise and have been trending upward for several months.
“Pending sales stats are a good indicator of demand over the short-term,” says Kim. “Thus, an increase in this number signifies healthy demand in the market.” In April, pending condominium sales were up again, but SF homes still in escrow were down.
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos, April 2018
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos, April 2018 |
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

In April, the median price of a single-family home hit $790,000 — a 10.9% leap from the MSP in April 2017 of $712,500. Condo prices increased slightly again in April from a year ago — from $415,500 in April 2017 to $416,000. You may remember in March, the median sales price of a condominium reached a new record high of $435,000, jumping ahead of the previous record of $430,000 set in January.
Using the year-end figures from 2017 for comparison, single-family homes appreciated at an annual rate of 2.7% last year, and condos appreciated annually by 3.8%. Year-to-date figures for 2018 average a bit higher. The MSP of a single-family home is up 4.6% since the new year. Condos are up 7.5%. With the summer still ahead, Oahu’s MSP is on track for a record year.

HOT MARKETS!

Island wide, stats show condo sellers are typically accepting offers for 99% of their original asking price, while single-family home owners are hovering at 98.8%. Hot markets are neighborhoods where buyers likely bid up prices resulting in the percentage of sales-price-to-original-price received by the seller is 100% or more. It’s worth noting there were 158 single-family homes and 122 condos in the Ewa area, which sold for 100.2% of the list price — making Ewa the hottest neighborhood on Oahu according to the current stats.

Single-family homes selling in:

Ewa Plain 100.2%
Makakilo 100.1%
Wahiawa 100.0%

Condos selling in:

Ewa Plain 100.2%
Hawaii Kai 100.0%
Kalihi-Palama 100.0%
Makakilo 101.1%
Waipahu 101.5%
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data. April 2018

Home sales pace eases, buyers find some relief and opportunity

Low inventory and rising prices continued into March, as reflected by the latest figures released by the Honolulu Board of Realtors this week.

Remember: The valuation of any property type, whether condo, single-family home, vacant land, apartment, or commercial property can vary depending on location, neighborhood, size, condition, age, features, amenities, upgrades and much more. For specifics regarding your particular property, contact me for a personal, customized home valuation.


Low inventory and rising prices continued into March, as reflected by the latest figures released by the Honolulu Board of Realtors this week. But the pace of sales has slowed ever so slightly, offering buyers some breathing room to find the home of their dream.
Buyers may also be further encouraged to find there was an inventory boost — an 11 percent increase in active listings in the condominium segment in March, adding some much needed inventory to choose from.
Of course, as we near summertime, any respite may not last long. Confident sellers, looking to cash in on their equity, will move to price their properties for the summertime fever. Kalama Kim, Principal Broker at Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties, cautions sellers about how overpriced homes may turn buyers away.
“Sellers have been very optimistic with pricing their homes this year, as they have watched prices continue to rise, and buyers battle for homes. So, it is understandable they may want to price their home at the top of the value range,” says Kim.
“But even though homes are selling quickly in today’s market, sellers should resist the urge to price too high. Buyers will stay away from illogically-priced homes and often won’t even submit a low offer with the fear of being utterly rejected.”
There’s no substitute for a talk with an experienced Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties real estate agent about what price point is realistic for your home and your neighborhood. Realtors® are experts on how you can get top dollar for your home, including what improvements might best increase the marketability — and the sales price — of your home.
“If a seller has the means to invest money into preparing their home for sale prior to listing it on the market, they can maximize the selling price of their home,” says Kim. “The priority list of improvements should be based on increasing the pool of buyers who will be attracted to the home. It should start with items that may make a difference on whether or not a lender will finance the property. Next, put yourself in the shoes of a buyer and identify the items someone might consider deal breakers, which may include worn carpets, damaged flooring, or stained walls.”
Don’t forget the home’s exterior. Even though we are advised to never judge a book by its cover, buyers often make up their minds about a house within 30 seconds of pulling up to the home.
“Curb appeal is one of the first impressions the buyer has of a property. Even the simplest detail like failing to remove trash cans from the front yard or pulling the weeds can skew the buyer’s perception of the property.”
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, March 2018
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, March 2018 |
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

Sales volume, which tracks the pace of sales, slowed ever so slightly on Oahu — down 1.3% from 309 single-family homes closed in March 2017 to 305 closings last month. Condo sales volume was down 2%, from 495 in March 2017 to 485 last month.
Pending sales are also down — 12.3% and 11.1% respectively in the SFH and condo segment. While these dips may not faze sellers with summer fast approaching, buyers may see a slight respite, enough to motivate them to step up their efforts.
First Quarter 2018 sales volume statistics ran neck-and-neck with the first quarter 2017. In the first three months of 2017, 777 single-family homes closed, compared to 774 for the same period this year — down 0.4%. The number of condo closings during the first quarter 2017 was 1,235, compared to 1,244 this year — up 0.7%.
Perhaps most telling, the number of days on the market dropped significantly in both categories — to 14 days for SF homes, and to 16 days for a condo.
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, March 2018
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, March 2018 |
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

The median sales price of a condominium in March reached a new record high of $435,000, jumping ahead of the previous record of $430,000 set in January — and 8.8% ahead of the MSP in March 2017. Darryl Macha, president of the Honolulu Board of Realtors, points out that the March data may be skewed by resales of 20 luxury and multi-million-dollar units.
The median sales price of a single-family home on Oahu was up from $752,000 a year ago, to $760,000 last month. The record monthly high for a SF home was set in June 2017 — $795,000, the closest Oahu’s MSP has ever come to hitting $800,000.
It is interesting to note, the MSP have doubled since 2003 — roughly 15 years ago — when the MSP for a SF home was $380,000, and in 2004, the MSP for a condo was $208,000.
Median price is determined when half the homes sold for more and half sold for less.

HOT MARKETS!

Island wide, single-family home sellers are typically accepting offers for 97.4% of their original asking price, while condo owners are closer to 98.9%. We like to call out the hottest markets where, in these neighborhoods and due to bidding wars among buyers, the percentage of sales price to original price received by the seller is 100% or more, according to the current year-to-date stats.
Single-family homes selling in:
Downtown—Nuuanu 101.2%
Ewa Plain 100.3%
Kalihi—Palama 101.6%
Kaneohe 101.2%
Kapahulu- Diamond Head 100.0%
Makakilo 100.3%
Pearl City—Aiea 100.1%
Condos selling in:
Makakilo 100.0%
Mililani 101.3%
Pearl City — Aiea 100.5%
Wahiawa 100.2%
Waipahu 101.8%
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data. March 2018

Oahu Real Estate Market Update | March 2018

While the island continues to faces a huge inventory drought, there’s no shortage of homebuyers eager to jump into the market this spring.

Oahu Real Estate Market Update | March 2018 Remember: The valuation of any property type, whether condo, single-family home, vacant land, apartment, or commercial property can vary depending on location, neighborhood, size, condition, age, features, amenities, upgrades and much more. For specifics regarding your particular property, contact me for a personal, customized home valuation.


Demand remains high, inventory tight, as Oahu prices push higher in February

The median price of Oahu real estate increased for the 10th consecutive month in February — confirming homebuyers are not being deterred much by the recent mortgage interest rates uptick. While the island continues to faces a huge inventory drought, there’s no shortage of homebuyers eager to jump into the market this spring.
“Buyer demand has yet to slow down since mortgage interest rates have increased, which illustrates how affordability has not been affected as much as expected,” says Kalama Kim, principal broker at Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties.
“Seller and buyer behavior is always what drives our market,” he says. “At the point interest rates and prices hit the peak in this cycle, buyers will inform the market by refusing to pay the higher prices. We haven’t seen that happen just yet.”
Oahu’s available housing inventory remains near its two-year low, spurring on a competitive buying environment, which in turn further decreases inventory and pressures home prices to rise — basic principals of supply and demand.
According to the year-to-date figures provided by Honolulu Board of Realtors, single-family homeowners on Oahu saw a 3.7 % appreciation from this time last year, while condo owners saw an impressive 10.7 % increase.
Because inventory on the island has been sparse for years, buyers are accustomed to bidding higher than asking prices and more willing to adjust their wish lists.
“Buyers should rank their wants and needs based on priority because they may have to weigh the benefits of each, given the lack of homes available for sale,” adds Kim. “As long as demand remains at current levels and inventory remains low, prices will continue to experience upward pressure.” According to Kim, recent instability in the stock market has not translated, to uncertainty in real estate. Indeed, a temperamental Wall Street can highlight real estate as a safe-haven investment.
Kim says, “We haven’t seen the volatility of the stock market affect the real estate market yet. In the past, investors have turned to the stability of real estate.”

Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, February 2018
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, February 2018 |
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

Single-family home sales volume was down 1.8% (217 homes closed) in February, compared to February 2017 (221 homes closed). Year-to-date figures are up a modest 0.2%.
Condo sales, however, were up 6.4% — from 362 a year ago to 385 last month. While the slower pace of single-family home sales in general is typical in February, the increase in condo volume stats may indicate a trend with some buyers shifting their preference for that more affordable condo or townhome — time will tell. HBR reports (below) that condos are also appreciating at a faster rate than single-family homes, which would support that theory.
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, February 2018
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, February 2018 |
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

The median price of a single-family home reached $772,500, a 2.3% increase from February 2017, when the MSP was $755,000. Only once has the monthly MSP been higher — in August 2017 when it reached a record $786,250.
Condo prices are up as well. The MSP of a condo on Oahu last month was up 6.2% from February 2017, $409,000 from the MSP a year earlier of $385,000 — not a record, but in the top five highest monthly MSPs recorded.
Less inventory usually points to higher prices. And while the months of inventory remaining is still in record low territory, both single-family and condo stats posted an increase in new listings and active listings, possibly offering buyers a reprieve in coming months.
The Honolulu Board of Realtors tracks the inventory in each price range. It is interesting to note that the single-family price range with the most inventory is the $1.9 million and above category. Similarly, the condo price range with the most inventory is also the highest range, $700,000 and above.

HOT MARKETS!

Homes are selling quickly, often in bidding wars. This month’s hottest markets are those neighborhoods where the percentage of sales price to original price received by the seller is consistently 100% or more, according to the latest year-to-date stats.
Single-family homes selling in:
Ewa Plain 101.2%
Kalihi —Palama 101.6%
Kaneohe 100.0%
Kapahulu- Diamond Head 101.4%
Mililani 101.4%
Waialae – Kahala 102.6%
Condos selling in:
Kaneohe 100.9%
Mililani 100.0%
Pearl City- Aiea 101.9%
Wahiawa 101.9%
Waipahu 102.2%
Windward Coast 100.0%
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data. February 2018

Oahu Condo Prices Hit Record High in January

Prices are up. The number of single-family home sales is up. Days-on-the-market is shorter and months-of-inventory-remaining is scant.

Oahu Real Estate Market Update | February 2018
Remember: The valuation of any property type, whether condo, single-family home, vacant land, apartment, or commercial property can vary depending on location, neighborhood, size, condition, age, features, amenities, upgrades and much more. For specifics regarding your particular property, contact me for a personal, customized home valuation.


Only a month into 2018, Oahu’s hot housing market continues to show no sign of cooling down.
Prices are up. The number of single-family home sales is up. Days-on-the-market is shorter and months-of-inventory-remaining is scant.
“January sales numbers reflect continued strong demand by buyers,” says Kalama Kim, principal broker at Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties. “The months of remaining inventory dropped to 1.9 months. That means at the current rate of sales, if no other homes came on the market for sale, homes would be sold out in 58 days. That’s a hot market.”
With the new year often comes a flurry of new listings. Yet, despite a modest increase in inventory last month, robust sales momentum is depleting the inventory at such a rate that new listings aren’t keeping pace. Indeed, the 1.9 months of remaining inventory marks the lowest single-family inventory level in more than two years — particularly scarce are homes in the $550,000 to $800,000 price range.
“The first months of a new year are traditionally a slower time for housing sales on Oahu, so it’s encouraging to see a slight increase in January sales for single-family homes,” says the president of Honolulu Board of Realtors. HBR also reports another record high median sales price for condominiums of $430,000.
Demand remains high, despite concerns about a step-up in mortgage interest rates. If anything, buyers are moved to lock in a loan in case rates do continue to move higher.
“Even though we have seen a slow increase in mortgage interest, those interest rates have not influenced our real estate market as of yet,” says Kim.
Sellers are motivated by circumstances.
“The vast majority of sellers are selling due to life changes like a new job, moving to the mainland or just right-sizing to a more appropriate home for their family. We rarely see sellers simply selling to cash out on their home.”
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, January 2018
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, January 2018 | Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

When comparing sales volume — January 2017 to January 2018 — the number of closed sales was up slightly from last year. There were 252 single-family homes sold in January — a 2% increase from the 247 sales a year ago.
Condominium sales volume was down 1.1% — from 378 a year ago to 374 last month.
During the month of January, 426 new single-family homes and 730 new condos came on the market. So for buyers, there was plenty of new product to look at. But buyers need to act fast if they expect to score, as the typical single-family home was on the market for 21 days, and condos, only 19 days. The more appealing listings will be snatched up even faster.
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, January 2018
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, January 2018 | Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

The January 2018 median price of a condominium — $430,000 — sets a new high, surpassing the previous record of $419,000 set in August of 2017. This January price bounce up tallied up a stunning 13.2% increase from January 2017, when the MSP was $380,000.
Single-family home prices were up as well. In January the MSP of a single-family home was a reported $772,000, up 5.8% from a year ago, when homes were selling at an MSP of $730,000 — just shy of the all-time high of $795,000 set in June 2017.
This month’s statistics highlight the fact that folks who purchased a year ago are already realizing equity.
HOT MARKETS!
In general, the hottest markets in 2017 were condominiums. When comparing 2016 to 2017 year-over-year price gains from neighborhood to neighborhood, the highest gain in a single-family neighborhood was 3.9% posted in both the Leeward Region and the Ewa Plain. While 3.9% is a respectable increase, condominiums appreciated at a much more dramatic rate. Here is a list of the condo markets on Oahu posting year-over-year gains of greater than 10%.
Condos selling in:
Central Region (Launani Valley, Mililani, Mililani Mauka, Wahiawa, Whitmore Village, Wilkina, Waipio, Waikalani Wood.): 19.6%
Kailua Region: 10.7%
Hawaii Kai Region: 40.3%
Leeward Region (Maili, Waianae, Makaha): 10.3%
North Shore Region (Kuilima, Waialua): 210.7%
Waipahu Region (Waipahu, Waikele, Royal Kunia, Village Park, Waipio Gentry): 18.3%
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data. January 2018

Oahu Real Estate Market Update | October 2017

Prices are on the rise, but not too fast — at a healthy rate. These are not boom-level indicators, but reflect modest, sustainable increases, based upon solid economic rationales.

Remember: The valuation of any property type, whether condo, single-family home, vacant land, apartment, or commercial property can vary depending on location, neighborhood, size, condition, age, features, amenities, upgrades and much more. For specifics regarding your particular property, contact me for a personal, customized home valuation.


As Lending Guidelines Ease, More Buyers Encouraged to Start Shopping

A drop in new listings for September along with a five-percent decrease in days on the market before a seller opens escrow have compounded the short supply of inventory on Oahu. The results, of course, are predictable: Prices continue to rise.
“Buyer demand, paired with minimal inventory for sale, continues to drive the market forward,” says Kalama Kim, principal broker at Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties. “Current demand has been fueled by employment statistics, consumer confidence and low mortgage interest rates. A new factor, which has now come into play, is a change in underwriting. Lenders have reported that recent changes to their guidelines have made it a bit easier for buyers to get a loan.”
Prices are on the rise, but not too fast — at a healthy rate. Year-to-date figures from the Honolulu Board of Realtors indicate that single-family home prices are 3.4% ahead of 2016 data at the end of 10 months. The median price of a condominium compiled for the first 10 months of 2017 is up 5.4% as well, compared to this time last year. These are not boom-level indicators, but reflect modest, sustainable increases, based upon solid economic rationales.

Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, September 2017
Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, September 2017 | Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

As expected, summer sales were up. Single-family home figures were up 13.7% from a year ago — with 374 sales last month, compared with 329 in September 2016. Pending SF sales, transactions in escrow but not yet closed, are also way up — a 22.9% increase — from 481 in September 2016 to 591 last month.
Condominium sales increased overall 2.7% — from 512 closed transactions in September 2016 to 526 last month. Pending condo sales are substantially up — from 696 a year ago, to 777 last month — an increase of 11.6%.
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, September 2017
Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos on Oahu, September 2017 | Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

The median sales price for condominiums increased 10.9% in September, to $425,000, tying the all-time high record set in July 2017. Despite record-high sales prices twice in a single year, condos and townhomes remain a popular alternative, as evidenced by the increase in pending sales. Median Days on Market dropped to 19 days.
The single-family home median sales price was up 1.3% from September 2016 to $760,000 last month with Days on Market down 12.5% from the same period last year. Sales opened escrow after an average of 14 days after being listed last month.
“The buyer pool continues to be strong,” says Kim. “There is no specific indicator to tell us when that will change. Buyers and sellers should be in communication with their Realtor to keep a pulse on the market to see if there are any sudden changes.”
For buyers, it is important to stay realistic. Lending guidelines have eased up, but a buyer still needs to have an established income to support the monthly mortgage payments. Most homeowners, don’t achieve their dream home as their first purchase — they work up to it.
“Buyers should work with their Realtor and loan officer to ensure they are comfortable with the monthly payment and the amount of home they can purchase for that amount,” Kim points out. “Sometimes, buyers may not get their dream home right away, and need to decide whether they should pare down to something more within their price range or continue renting.”
HOT MARKETS!
Homes are selling quickly, often in bidding wars, and this month’s hottest markets are those neighborhoods where the percentage of sales price to original price received by the seller is consistently 100% or more, according to the latest year-to-date stats.
“For sellers, during a hot market, they should take advantage of the leverage the current market offers and hire a Realtor to ensure they don’t leave any money on the table,” adds Kim.
Single-family homes selling in:
Ewa Plain: 100%
Kailua –Waimanalo: 100.1%
Kalihi – Palama: 105.1% (Hot!)
Windward Coast: 100.7%
Condo neighborhood where sellers received 100% or more of their asking price:
Hawaii Kai: 100%
Kailua – Waimanalo: 100%
Kalihi – Palama: 101%
Kaneohe: 101.3% (Hot!)
Mililani: 101%
Pearl City – Aiea: 100%
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data. September 2017