David's Real Estate Blog | Dispatches from Diamond Head

Latest real estate news and articles from David E. Buck, Realtor-Broker

Aug. 4, 2017

Looking Back: My 1st Year with Harcourts Island Properties

This summer I celebrated making my first year with Harcourts Island Properties and what a year it's been... Here's a recap of the year in review.

Summer 2016

Serge and SallyDavid and Harcourts at Kahala Mall

David joins Sally and Serge at Harcourts Island Properties. Kahala Mall Ad Rebrand.

I decided to join Harcourts Island Properties to team up with Serge Krivatsy and Sally Royer after 7 years with my previous firm and 16 years in real estate. Having known Serge for years (on a personal and professional level) he introduced me to the Harcourts history and international exposure it could bring to my clients. It has been my best career move to date.

October 2016

Marks Estate Sale

Closed on the storied Marks Estate in Nuuanu

I had the pleasure of representing JP Morgan Chase Bank in their disposition of the Marks Estate in Nuuanu. It was a Historic Property that sat on 4.7 acres in Honolulu.

November 2016

Harcourts Pacific 2016 3rd Quarter Awards

Ranked 16th for Harcourts Pacific Region 3rd Quarter

Quite to my surprise, I ended up ranking in the top 20 for Harcourts Pacific Region for the quarter. This includes California, Hawaii and Nevada. Mahalo to all my loyal clients for making this possible!

December 2016

David's 2016 Sales

Thanks to my clients, I had a great year with 25 closed sales

I finished off my best year after 16 years in the business. The 2nd half of the year was finished strong with nearly $17 million in closed volume.

January 2017

Harcourts Insider CoverDavid in Harcourts Insider Magazine

Featured in Harcourts International Inside Magazine Publication

I had the honor of being featured in Harcourts Inside, which is Harcourts International publication that goes out to all their offices and agents in the network that spans over 830 offices in 10 countries.

February 2017

Harcourts RotoruaHarcourts TaupoHarcourts Wellington

Visited Harcourts offices in Rotorua, Lake Taupo and Wellington, NZ

I made a trip to New Zealand to see where it all began for Harcourts. We traveled from Auckland in the North down to Wellington in the south of the North Island and stopped at several offices along the way. The brand exposure is huge overseas and I look forward to new growth in Hawaii on top of continued growth within the United States.

Harcourts Annual Conference 2017Harcourts Advantage Office Visit

Harcourts Annual Conference and Awards and Harcourts Office visit in Carlsbad, CA

Later that month, Serge and I traveled to California to attend the annual conference where we met up with Sally. We had some great training, meetings and networking with other Harcourts agents and owners.

Mary 2017

Harcourts Kapahulu Office

We moved offices from Kaimuki to Hee Hing Plaza on Kapahulu Ave.

After a short stint in Kaimuki, we found a better home with more street exposure on Kapahulu Ave. just on the outskirts of Diamond Head and Waikiki.

June 2017

David Buck Top 100 Realtor Hawaii

Awarded Hawaii Business Magazine's Top 100 Realtors in Hawaii for 2016

I was honored to be one of the Top 100 Realtors in the state of Hawaii recognized by Hawaii Business Magazine.

July 2017

Harcourts Pacific 2nd Quarter 2017

Finished 7th Overall for Harcourts Pacific Region in 2nd Quarter

I ended up ranking 7th overall for the Harcourts Pacific Region of California, Hawaii and Nevada.

It's been an incredible journey so far and I look forward to success in helping more people achieve their real estate dreams in years ahead with this great company.

July 23, 2017

Two Hawaii Surf Ski Legends List Their Homes for Sale

Hawaii's two most decorated surf ski paddlers of all time have their homes for sale here on Oahu. Both Marshall Rosa and Nalu Kukea are the only two Hawaiian surf ski paddlers to have a handful of 2nd place finishes in the prestigious Molokai to Oahu Surf Ski Championships - a race that has been dominated by international paddlers for nearly 40 years*

Marshall Rosa and Kala Kukea

Marshall Rosa and Nalu's father Kala Kukea in a surf ski race on the Ala Wai

Marshall Rosa's Portlock House

Marshall Rosa is arguably the best paddler ever to come out of Hawaii. A natural waterman that grew up one of six kids on the ocean at Portlock in Hawaii Kai. He is a good friend and childhood friend of my father Mark. They attended Star of the Sea School together as kids and later on went on to win a number of Molokai to Oahu canoe races together during the 70's. 

1975 Molokai-Oahu Winners

1975 Winning Molokai-Oahu Outrigger Team with Mark Buck and Marshall Rosa (5th and 6th from left)

My Dad did the 1980 Molokai surf ski race on a Hayden. Marshall was his escort boat driver that year. The race was hot, flat and miserable and my Dad decided to pull out of the race. Having been burnt out, he went on to leave the ski at Marshall's house after the race. That's when Marshall decided to give it a go. After initially flipping over a few times, he was ready to throw in the towel. His wife Barbara later decided to give it a go and had no problem - actually paddling out and catching a wave. The rest they say is history....

Marshall went on to dominate all the surf ski races on Oahu over the next decade. He finished 2nd in Molokai to both Grant Kenny and Oscar Chalupski too many times to name. He was also a strong force for many, many years after - even winning local races well into his 50's during the 90's. He can still be seen out in Hawaii Kai passing one man canoes (with paddlers less than half his age) on a SUP (Stand up Paddleboard).

6973 Kalanianaole Hwy

Rosa Home Outdoor Sitting AreaRosa Home Outdoor Area

Rosa Family Home on the beach at Portlock (MLS # 201714158)

Not only is Marshall an incredible waterman, he was also an incredible carpenter. He built this home on his family's property in 1975. He also built two of the homes for my father I grew up in over the years.

Rosa great room

Rosa Bench SeatRosa Upstairs Sitting Area

Great room, bench seat and upstairs sitting area

The home is listed with Marshall's wife Barbara and at the time of this article, they recently accepted an offer. I'm happy for their family. In this business, however the deal isn't done until it closes. If there's any interest on this or other homes in Portlock, feel free to let me know.

Nalu Kukea's Aina Haina Home

While Marshall and Nalu were a generation apart in age (Nalu's father Kala was more a contemporary of Marshall and my Dad and also an incredible waterman), their dominance in the local surf ski arena ran in back to back decades with Marshall in the 1980's to Nalu in the 1990's.

Nalu and I first met and became friends 30 years ago when I got to do a canoe race with him in the Ala Wai canal back in 1987. The following year, the two of us were part of the inaugural Hawaii Canoe and Kayak Team that went to compete at the flatwater national championships in Raleigh, North Carolina.

HCKT Nationals 1988

HCKT Nationals in 1988: Nalu bottom right corner, Kala upper right corner, David/Mark Buck far right middle

Nalu was the top Junior paddler in the US  and competed in the Junior World Championships in 1989. It was that year that he and I met Clint Robinson - a friend from Australia that went on to win an Olympic Gold Medal and also won the Molokai Surf Ski Race a handful of times. Nalu tried out for the 1992 Olympic Team and I the 1996 Team. After not making the '92 team, he moved back to Hawaii and competed in his first Molokai race where he got 2nd place. It was also my first Molokai race and one we'll never forget... It was a headwind and was the first win of nine total for another friend - Dean Gardiner from Australia.

Kukea Living Room

Kukea KitchenKukea Nook

Kukea Aina Haina Home (MLS # 201711716) great room, kitchen and breakfast nook

Nalu's father Kala built their Aina Haina home back in 1975. It has really cool architecture with high ceilings in the main living area and took some engineering genius to build on the steep upslope of a cul de sac. With forever views of Aina Haina Valley, they went through an extensive remodel in 2012 that can be seen in the kitchen and bathrooms.

Kukea Downstairs

Kukea Covered Living AreaKukea Yard

Indoor, outdoor living on 3 levels of improvements

What you can't tell in MLS is there's roughly 75 stairs to get up to the main living area. That's one of many reasons that kept Nalu in such great shape! There were also climbing ropes, a pull up bar and olympic gymnast rings in the home and great room that were used to build upper body strength. The carport also has very high ceilings which can come in handy for boat storage. Kala & Nalu had a pulley system to raise and lower their boats off their vehicle roof racks. Although not oceanfront like Marshall's, this is just a fraction of the price and only 10 minutes drive to launch a boat from Hawaii Kai.

Real Estate For Paddlers

To learn more about available propreties on Oahu for surf ski, outrigger or SUP paddlers feel free to contact me or visit my real estate page for paddlers

*The first 3 races were won by local paddlers prior to Grant Kenny arriving from Australia in 1979. Since then, the race has been dominated by Australians, South Africans and a Tahitian. There's also been a handful of women from Hawaii that have held the title, however not every year do the best international women from overseas show up.

July 18, 2017

Median Single Family Home Price Hits Record Price of $795,000

This past month, we broke another record for the median single family home price on Oahu which finished off at $795,000. This was up 4.6% and crushed the previous high from June of 2016 that was $760,000.

June, 2017 Real Estate Market Stats on Oahu

This is the first market update I've done in awhile as we've been busy the past few months with our office relocation from Kaimuki to Kapahulu. Here's a quick video I'd like to share to give you an idea of the space:

 

New Harcourts Island Properties Office Space

It's a great location on Kapahulu Ave. on the outskirts of Waikiki and off the base of Diamond Head. Feel free to come by and visit now that we're up and running. Now, back to the market stats:

Single Family Home Stats

Waialua Home for $795,000

This Waialua home (MLS # 201711838) on the North Shore is listed for June's median of $795,000

Not only was the median sales price at an all time high. We also witnessed the lowest median days on market I think I've seen in my career (over the past 17 years). It's now at just 12 days. The previous record was 14 Days in June of last year. We also had 370 sales on island, which was a whopping 14.2% increase from last year. If these stats aren't leaving you to believe this is a Seller's Market, I'm not sure how else stronger the argument could get.

Condo Sales Stats

Honolulu Tower Condo for $400,000

This Honolulu Tower condo (MLS # 201713140) is listed for June's median price of $400,000

The median condo price on the other hand was down 1.4% from last year and was off from April's high of $415,500. The inventory was also moving though with just 13 days on market, which was also the lowest we've seen in years. Sales volume wasn't nearly as strong either with sales down 2.2% from last year.

Local Market Updates

As always, real estate is local and here's what neighborhoods were hot for buyers and sellers in the month of June:

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Sellers

  • Home sales on the Windward Coast were up 300%
  • Home prices on the North Shore were up 31%
  • Condo sales in Diamond Head-Kapahulu were up 700%*
  • Condo prices in Diamond Head-Kapahulu were up 161%*

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Buyers

  • Home sales in Kalihi-Palama were down 36%
  • Home prices in Aina Haina-Kuliouou were down 22%
  • Condo sales in Kalihi-Palama were down 42%
  • Condo prices n Downtown-Nuuanu were down 23%

What’s Happening in Your Neighborhood?

Please consider these are broad overviews for regions on Oahu. To find out what is happening in your specific neighborhood (or street for that matter), feel free to contact me for more information.

* There was only 1 condo sale last year, which is why the jump was so significant

July 17, 2017

New Mid Century Modern Inventory in Makiki Heights and Manoa

Over the past few weeks, there's been some pretty cool mid century modern homes to hit the market in Makiki and Manoa. Some were pretty original and others have been upgraded over the years restoring their original luster and awe...

Makiki Heights

2399 Aina Lani Place

2399 Aina Lani Living Area2399 Aina Lani Kitchen

2399 Aina Lani Place (MLS # 201713213) is my favorite

Built in 1957, it was remodeled 10 years ago in 2007. Although the classic lines were kept, the remodel was done in a very classy and contemporary fashion. The original architect for the home was Haydn Phillips - who has also done some cool homes in Diamond Head and Kahala over the years.

With incredible views of Diamond Head, Waikiki and the ocean, there's many reasons why this one ranks at the top of my list for current mid century inventory for sale...

1960 Makiki Height Drive Exterior

1960 Makiki Hts. Drive Living Room1960 Makiki Hts. Drive Kitchen

1960 Makiki Heights Drive (MLS # 201715482) is definitely more of a blank slate

Built in 1957 as well, this one is definitely more original condition as the last remodel took place back in 1960 according to MLS.

For those more on a budget, this one is priced at roughly only 35% of the asking price of the Aina Lani home above. You'll never get the view of that one here, however there's definitely room for improvement to work with. Lots of the original features are intact such as the open beam ceilings, lots of built-ins and a galley kitchen which was common at the time.

Manoa

3607 Woodlawn Terrace

3607 Woodlawn Terrace View3607 Woodlawn Terrace Sitting Area

3607 Woodlawn Terrace (MLS # 201715136) in a tropical setting

Built in 1965, this gem is in a tropical setting and priced less than both the Makiki Heights homes. With a generous lot on a roughly a quarter acre, the original owner was a University of Hawaii botanist and you can tell by incredible foliage. Did I mention it was in Manoa? I'm sure the rain helps keep everything green as well!

2926 Lowrey Ave.

2926 Lowrey Living Room2926 Lowrey Dining and Kitchen

2926 Lowrey Ave. (MLS # 201715291) has the lowest asking price in this article

Built in 1967, this is the both the newest of the 4 homes covered in my article and also the lowest price at $1,298,000. The've also done a great job staging the place with some retro mid century modern furniture that looks similar to some pieces we own. One can enjoy another clean slate as it appears to be very well kept over the years.

Contact a Mid Century Modern Expert

To learn more about mid century modern homes on Oahu, feel free to either visit my mid century modern page for the latest listings or contact me for more information.

June 26, 2017

Niu Valley Inventory and Home Sales on the Rise

Over the past 6 months, there have only been 2 sales in Niu Valley. This summer, the word sure has gotten out about the shortage of inventory. As of today there are only 2 active listings, however there are 7 homes currently in escrow!

Active Listings

313 Halaki St. in Niu Valley

1. 313 Halaki St. (MLS # 201713113) is listed for $1,050,000

5846 Kalanianaole Hwy

2. 5846 Kalanianaole Hwy. (MLS # 201627962) is listed for $1,838,000

Homes in Escrow vs. Recent Sales

The last two homes that sold in Niu Valley were:

  • 5660 Haleola St. sold for $935,000 on March 30, 2017
  • 222 Halemaumau St. sold for $968,000 on May 4, 2017

Meanwhile, the 7 homes in escrow have asking prices that range between $1,050,000 and $1,830,000 with an average of $1,260,714 and a median asking price of $1,200,000. This is a significant increase over the two fixers that have sold recently!

Is now the time to Sell?

If you're you'd like to take advantage of this Seller's Market in Niu Valley, feel free to contact me for more information.

May 29, 2017

Historic Nuuanu Home Reduced $150,000

Last year, I had the opportunity to sell one of the most iconic Historic Homes in Nuuanu - The Marks Estate. The new Buyer has plans in store and in the meantime secured a lease from a major movie production company. Although that one is gone, here's another opportunity for a historic home in Nuuanu.

2712 Old Pali Road

2712 Pali Hwy (MLS # 201621795) is listed for $1,845,000

A few days ago the price was reduced $150,000 from $1,995,000 to $1,845,000. The improvements are roughly have that of the Marks Estate and the land is a fraction. However, it is still "large" compared to your typical Honolulu home boast over a half acre. It was also built in 1908, so it preceded the Marks estate by roughly 20 years. Considering the age, it does have a lot of its historic charm and good bones intact.

Nuuanu Entry and StairwayNuuanu Living Room and Fireplace

Grand Stairway and Living Room with Fireplace

Nuuanu DiningNuuanu Top of Stairway

Dining Room and Top of Stairway

The home is a replica of a home in Chicago and it was poured concrete to look like bricks. It also looks like the bluestone used and seen in a lot of historic buildings around Honolulu.

Nuuanu Concrete ExteriorNuuanu Exterior

Poured concrete exterior meant to look like brick

These types of homes don't come up often and now is a great opportunity to live in such a solidly built home.... If historic homes are your thing, feel free to contact me for more information on this or other historic homes on Oahu.

April 11, 2017

Mahalo for Your Business in 2016

As we've been working on our taxes from last year, I just wanted to take the time to reflect on 2016....

Thank you for our success in Real Estate. We could not have done it without you!

 January 20 Kalama ValleyJanuary 22 Ocean PointeFebruary 9 MakahaMarch 21 Uraku TowerApril 15 Makaha Valley TowersMay 18 Hokulani in KailuaMay 18 MokapuMay 20 KoolaniMay 31 Ala Mona HotelJune 2 Kuapa Isle SellerJune 2 Kuapa Isle BuyerJune 14 Symphony PenthouseJuly 1 Kaioo TerraceJuly 1 IlikaiJuly 22 Niihau ApartmentsAugust 12 Waiholo BuyerAugust 12 Waiholo BuyerAugust 29 MoloaaSept 28 NanamoanaOctober 18 Old Pali RoadOctober 31 KapoleiNovember 16 KuliououDecember 2 HoakaleiDecember 7 Collection Ala MoanaDecember 21 St. Louis Heights

 

Each one of the photos above represent the wonderful Buyers and Sellers we were able to work with and successfully purchase or sell in 2016. THANK YOU for contributing to our success in Real Estate!

We are very appreciative for our great clients and network of friends and colleagues who have done business with us and referred our services to others.  As a result, our business continues to grow!

April 8, 2017

Upgraded Ossipoff Home for Sale on Waialae Nui Ridge

Waialae Nui Ridge is a neighborhood in east Honolulu where you can find quite a few of Vladimir Ossipoff's works. Although his homes are getting hard to come by, you can almost bank on one hitting the market on Waialae Nui Ridge every year or two.

Waialae Nui Ossipoff Home framing Diamond Head

Diamond Head views perfectly framed: Ossipoff Home (MLS # 201706881) on Waialae Nui Ridge

Built in 1964, the homeowner remodeled 50 years later in 2014. I typically love the original homes much better than those that are remodeled due to bad taste and killing the original style. However this owner seems to have done a great job blending "Mid-Century Modern" with today's "Modern". Both the kitchen and bathroom remodels kept with the original sleek lines and use of hardwoods and solid surfaces.

1778 Halekoa Kitchen 11778 Halekoa Kitchen 2

Kitchen remodel

Wailae Nui Bath Remodel 1Waialae Nui Bath Remodel 2

Bathroom Remodels

There were also some incredible views of Diamond Head from the expansive outdoor deck. Ossipoff was known for his use of the indoor/outdoor space.

Diamond Head View from Deck

1778 Halekoa Deck 11778 Halekoa Deck 2

Enjoy the expansive decks for entertaining and indoor/outdoor living...

Given the location, architecture and condition of this home, I'm assuming it will sell pretty quick! To learn more about Ossipoff and other Mid-Century Modern Homes on Oahu, feel free to bookmark my Mid-Century Modern page for the latest up to date listings.

March 25, 2017

Alfred Preis Home for Sale in Manoa's Woodlawn Neighborhood

It's been about a year and a half since an Alfred Preis home hit the market on Oahu. The last one was on Melemele Place in Manoa, which is a street you can find a nice concentration of his works. This newer listing is on Woodlawn Drive.

Alfred Preis Home at 3612 Woodlawn Drive

Front entry to Preis home (MLS # 201705766) on Woodlawn Dr. in Manoa

Although the home went through a remodel in 2001, there are lots of features that were unique to his architecture that can easily noticed. Since I live in a Preis home and have seen a number of his works re-listed over the years, here are some of the traits I noticed:

Preis stained wood paneling and open bean ceiling

Stained wood paneling, open beam ceilings and great use of natural light and airflow

Preis built-in shelving and drawers

Built in shelving and drawers

Turquoise Kitchen CounterTurquoise Counter Bathroom Sink

Use of Turquoise countertops on hard surfaces above cabinets - seen here in Kitchen and Bathroom

My guess is this one will go pretty quick, knowing the demand for these Alfred Preis homes (and Manoa homes in general). To keep up to date on Mid-Century Modern Homes on Oahu, feel free to bookmark my Mid-Century Modern Page, where I curate the latest Mid-Century Modern homes for sale.

Contact a Mid-Century Modern Expert

I'm also available to chat for a no-obligation consultation about a purchase or sale of one of these special properties and can be reached at 808-371-3509. 

March 20, 2017

February Hits 2nd Highest Median Home Price on Record

The median sales price for a single family home on Oahu in February was the 2nd highest on record.

February 2017 Housing Statistics on Oahu

Singel Family Home Stats

Ocean Pointe Home for $753,900

This Ocean Pointe home (MLS # 201702637) is listed just under February's median price

February was another great month for Sellers on Oahu as the median sales price hit $755,000, which was a 7.9% increase over February of 2016. The highest on record was June of last year that hit $760,000. Homes were also selling fast with just 21 days on market and active listing inventory down 9.5% from last year.

Condo Stats

Leasehold Waikiki Condo for $385,000

Leasehold Waikiki Condo (MLS # 201627511) currently listed for February's $385,000 median price

Meanwhile, the median condo price was up 1.7% from last year, however still was still over $20,000 under June's record of $405,500. The number of transactions however took a nice bump of 11.7% to finish off the month with 362 closed sales. Median days on market was also favorable to Sellers with just 22 days. In addition, active listings were down 8.4%.

As always, all real estate is local. Here are the neighborhoods on Oahu that were hot for sellers and buyers in February:

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Sellers

  • Home sales in Waialae-Kahala were up 140%
  • Home prices in Aina Haina-Kuliouou were up 62%
  • Condo sales in Diamond Head-Kapahulu* and the Windward Coast were up 100%
  • Condo prices in Kalihi-Palama were up 82%

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Buyers

  • Home sales on the North Shore and the Windward Coast were down 60%
  • Home prices in Moanalua-Salt Lake were down 22%
  • Condo sales in Kalihi-Palama were down 40
  • Condo prices n Diamond Head-Kapahulu were down 52%*

What’s Happening in Your Neighborhood?

Please consider these are broad overviews for regions on Oahu. To find out what is happening in your specific neighborhood (or street for that matter), feel free to contact me for more information.

* Only 30% of the sales in the Diamond Head-Kapahulu region were in the Gold Coast area of Diamond Head this year vs. 75% last year